Back to School Mealtimes

Ashley Powell  |  9/3/2009 8:00:34 PM

Back to school means back to extracurricular activities and hectic schedules.

To keep your family eating healthy, try these tips:

  • Make mealtime family time. Eating meals as a family can actually improve your family‚Äôs food habits since studies show children eat more fruits, vegetables and dairy foods at meals shared with their parents. Studies also show that teens that have frequent family meals are less likely to be involved in illegal drug use.
  • Involve the whole family in meal planning and preparation. Kids are more likely to eat dishes that they have helped cook. It is also a great way to get in some extra family time.
  • Be a good role model. Healthy eating is a lifestyle. Kids will watch what you are doing and eating.
  • Try something new. Include one new food or recipe each week. Let your family experience"the world" through food.
  • Stash healthy snacks. Keep healthy snacks in your car or close to the door so you can grab them as you head out. Control portions (and arguments) by giving each child their own snack sized zipper top bag full of healthy snacks.
  • Get creative. Adapt to your schedule. When you get the chance to cook, cook twice as much as you need and then freeze the extra for later.
  • Be informed when dining out. Visit restaurant Web sites to read about nutritional information. Know what you are going to order ahead of time.
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