5 Tips for a Healthful and Happy Halloween

There are so many fun-filled activities that go along with Halloween. This year we want to help parents incorporate enjoyable experiences for the kids and the entire family. Here are 5 Tips for a Healthful and Happy Halloween.

1. Emphasize the non-food related aspects of the holiday

Emphasize activities over the consumption of sugar-filled treats that are commonly consumed around Halloween.

Examples of non-food related activities that can be done for Halloween include:

  • Visiting a local pumpkin patch to pick pumpkins
  • Feeding animals then taking a hayride
  • Hosting a costume contest
  • Decorating for the holiday
  • Reading It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown
  • Watching a spooky movie, such as Spookley the Square Pumpkin

2. Balance

Serve a balanced meal or snack before trick or treating, while sorting through candy and every time you break out leftover candy. This will encourage having these sugar-filled treats in moderation. 

Some easy Halloween Snacks to try include:

3. Make it a moving holiday

Help balance out the eating by getting active. Increase activity by having a costume parade, walking door to door to collect candy, have a monster dance party and/or play games like costume tag or bobbing for apples. 

4. Avoid Allergies

There are several candies that have nuts or other common allergens in the ingredients. Handout out or having other treats available can be a great option for kids with allergies. Stickers, Play-Doh, applesauce, raisins, temporary tattoos, and spider rings are great alternatives to hand out instead of candy.

5. Pick Favorites

After trick or treating, have your child make a pile of his or her favorite candies to enjoy. Get your child involved and pack up the rest to be donated to a local shelter or send in a care package to those serving overseas. 

LN

Slice of Life- Folate and Pregnancy

citrus-slices-on-tray

We often associate citrus fruits with vitamin C. Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin that aids in the growth and repair of body tissue. Vitamin C helps heal wounds and repair and maintain healthy bones, teeth, skin, and cartilage.

Let’s talk about folate!

Folate is also known as folic acid and is vital during pregnancy. Folate helps to reduce the risk of spine and brain deformities (known as neural tube defects).

Citrus fruits also provide a rich source of folate. Pregnant women need 600 mcg of folate each day, and breastfeeding women need 500 mcg per day. An average orange contains about 30 mcg of folate and an 8-ounce serving of 100% orange juice provides 15% of the recommended Daily Value for folate, due to fortification.

Some other foods rich in folate include beans, avocados, and spinach and fortified foods such as grains.

If you are considering getting pregnant, our dietitians at Banister can talk to you about a folate-rich diet during preconception for the optimal spine and brain development.

KD

Institute of Medicine. Dietary Reference Intakes for Thiamin, Riboflavin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Folate, Vitamin B12, Pantothenic Acid, Biotin, and Choline. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. 1998:150- 188.

Blueberries help in the fight against cancer.

Summertime is the best time to explore in-season fruits.

Blueberries are in abundance and offer a wide variety of options when it comes to meals and snacks.

At 80 calories per one cup serving, blueberries provide a great source of antioxidants, fiber, vitamin C, vitamin K, and magnesium.

A handful of blueberries can be added to yogurt, mixed in pancake or waffle batters, and even pureed to compliment a salad vinaigrette. The possibilities are truly endless.

Blueberries are rich in flavonoids (mainly anthocyanidins), which have anti-cancer properties. The anthocyanins and polyphenols in blueberries are major functional ingredients for preventing disease.

A 2017 study in Pathology & Oncology Research, demonstrated that blueberries also exhibit inherent abilities to prevent carcinogenesis, inhibit the proliferation of neoplastic cells, and reduce the risks of recurrence in patients in remission. 

Many cancer research studies support that blueberries may be one of the best functional fruits in the health role of preventing chronic disease. Anthocyanins encourage our immune system to function properly, prevent DNA damage and regulate our hormones.

KD

Davidson, K.T., Zhu, Z., Balabanov, D. et al. Pathol. Oncol. Res. (2018) 24: 733. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12253-017-0376-2

August is the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’ first ever “Kids Eat Right” month

With childhood obesity on the rise, making sure kids eat right and get plenty of exercise is vital.
Parents and caregivers can play a big role in children’s nutrition and health, teaching kids about healthy foods, being a good role model and making sure physical activity is incorporated into each day.

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is encouraging families to take the following steps:

Shop Smart. To encourage a healthy lifestyle, get your children involved in selecting the food that will appear at the breakfast, lunch or dinner table.

Cook Healthy. Involve your child in the cutting, mixing and preparation of meals. They will learn about food and may even be enticed to try new foods they helped prepare.

Eat Right.
Sit down together as a family to enjoy a wonderful meal and the opportunity to share the day’s experiences with one another. Research indicates that those families who eat together have a stronger bond, and children have higher self-confidence and perform better in school.

Healthy Habits.
You can help kids form great, healthy habits by setting a good example. Fill half your plate with fruits and vegetables, choose lower-sodium options, and make at least half the grains your family eats whole grains. For beverages, choose water over sugary drinks, and opt for fat-free or low-fat milk.

Get Moving. Aside from being a great way to spend time together, regular physical activity is vital to strengthen muscle and bones, promote a healthy body weight, support learning, develop social skills and build self-esteem. Kids are encouraged to be active for 60 minutes per day.

Getting kids to eat right can sometimes be a challenge, particularly if they are picky eaters. Please don’t hesitate to make an appointment with Banister Nutrition for help with your family’s health.  We can help you with healthy meal and snack ideas, make sense of the feeding relationship and insure your children grow into healthy adults. mk

Importance of Family Meals with Adolescents

Did you know that family meals have a great impact on your children becoming overweight? When families have dinner together at home, they tend to eat more fruits and vegetables. When younger kids eat healthy dinners with their families, they are less likely to become overweight. By practicing dining at home with fresh cooked meals at the dinner table, the child will most likely start making better healthy choices as they become older. If a parent is constantly buying fast food for their child, they will only demand fast food over time.
Two cross-sectional, direct observational studies examining interpersonal dynamics at family meals with overweight children found that families with an obese child had difficulties with interpersonal dynamics during the family meal time, such as managing family members emotions, interpersonal involvement, parental discipline, and role division during family meals as compared to family with non-overweight children.
Here are some key points to induce great family dinners:
  • Make it enjoyable. Leave the serious discussions for another time. Family meals are for nourishment, comfort, and support.
  • Use the crock pot. Put everything together before leaving for work in the morning. You’ll come home to the delicious smell of a cooked meal.
  • Avoid portion distortion. Keep serving sizes under control, whether you’re at home or eating out.
  • Get the family involved. Let kids help prepare meals and set the table.
  • Keep it simple. Family meals don’t have to be elaborate. Work salads and vegetables into meals. Focus on familiar favorites!

 

Posted by: SSG

Sources: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23567247
http://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/features/family-dinners-are-important