You will be interested to know that during the 1950s, American kids used to have approximately three glasses of milk for every single glass of soda. However, a closer look at more recent times shows that the figures have completely swapped (as per TIME magazine). This is the reason that as per the latest survey conducted by the American Heart Association, the growth rate of overweight problems among children aged 6 to11 years has increased from 4% (1971-1974) to about 17% (2003-2006). If the problem would have been only limited to issues of being overweight, the problem would not have been that serious. However, the fact that overweight and obesity are harbingers of other life threatening ailments (including cardiac arrest) in children makes it obvious that, as parents, you must take care of what your child is eating.
You may say that you do not let you children gobble down those fat filled burgers, oily fries, and carbonated soft drinks. But are you 100% sure of the nutritious benefits of the so-called health foods that you are tossing daily onto your kid plate? Find out now.
Myths Busted: 5 Surprising Unhealthy Foods for Your Kids
Here are the top five deceptive foodstuffs that are touted as healthy, but actually are not. Make sure you keep these away from your children.
Packed Fruit Juices
Do not get fooled by the appealing fresh fruits and the “100% natural” tag line that appear on the front of juice packs. No matter how natural it is, always remember that these fruit juices are often packed with artificial sweeteners and preservatives, which are 100% unhealthy for not just kids but also grown ups. However, fruits are very necessary for a healthy body. A better option would be to give your children whole fruits or homemade fruit juice.
Just like the packed fruit juices, fish sticks or tenders are nothing but frozen fish laden with chemical preservatives and saturated fats. According to dieticians, freshly baked or grilled fish is better than the fried ones.
Although peanut butter is a storehouse of proteins and calories, they are also full of partially or completely hydrogenated fats, sugars, dextrose, and several other unwelcoming additives. Hence, in spite of giving your children peanut butter, it is advisable that you include real nuts in your kids’ lunchboxes.
How many of your kids leave the house in a hurry with one or two breakfast bars? It is time for a reality check. Spare a moment and have a look at the ingredient list of any of the breakfast bars (also known as granola bar, cereal bar, etc.). You will find that the premium ingredient is refined flour, followed by sugar and vegetable oil. Not only is it a fattening meal, but it can only fill your kid’s belly for an hour at the maximum. If your kids are in a real hurry, just give them a cup of yogurt blended with low-sugar cereals.
Children who eat rice cakes as snacks often start searching the cupboard for more food after an hour or so. This is because rice cakes do not have any calorific value. A much healthier option would be to serve homemade crunchy whole-wheat pita chips with homemade peanut butter or applesauce.
Remember, the future of your kids largely depends on what they are eating today. So, a little check on their eating habits can do wonders.
Assorted Snacks: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Assorted_snacks.jpg