This holiday season teach your kids how to bake healthier desserts without compromising taste.
The CDC shows kids today consume an excessive amount of sugar, with teens ages 14-18 trumping all other age groups with an intake of about 34 teaspoons a day. The roughly 550 calories those teens consume each day provide no nutritional benefit for cognitive and physical development, and potentially may be harmful. Young children are not trailing too far behind, either. Kids ages 4 to 5 consume on average about 17 teaspoons a day.
Get your kids in the kitchen! They won’t refuse to help out when preparing desserts. Use the time cooking together as an opportunity to teach basic math to little ones or organizational skills to older kids. Cooking also teaches kids about self-sufficiency, a life long skill with the potential to increase their health as adults.
Here’s 7 tips for making healthier desserts. Continue reading
When all the Halloween hype is over and you’re left with pounds of candy, how do you get rid of excess candy and take away the temptation for kids to overindulge? We, at AICR, have found some thoughtful and creative ways to rid your pantry of the excess candy Halloween leaves behind:
- Donate leftover candy to programs like Operation Shoebox, which take candy donations and send them overseas to deployed troops. I’m sure a trick-or-treat bag would really brighten the days of some of our hardworking soldiers.
- Your local dentist may be participating in Operation Gratitude’s Halloween Candy Buy Back Program. Dentists hold events where cash, coupons, toothbrushes, services or creative exchanges are options for candy buy backs.
- Also think about your students. Toss a couple pieces of candy among other things in a box and send it to your stressed college student to let them know you are thinking about them. Being that I am only a year out of college myself, I understand the appreciation for this gesture. In college, there is nothing like receiving an unexpected package with goodies and reminders of home!
- Consider using leftover candy for art projects such as gingerbread houses, Christmas is quickly approaching, as well as other holiday arts and crafts.
- For those of you with family members who have birthdays around this time of year, throw a couple pieces of leftover Halloween candy in party favor bags instead of buying new. You could also use it to fill a piñata.
- Throw leftover M&M’s into homemade trail mix for a sweet component.
- Lastly, for you parents, after all the Halloween hysteria dies down and candy has been dealt with, grab those dark-chocolate pieces the kids won’t eat – you too deserve a small treat after all of your hard work.
Did you ever wish your parent let you eat your cake alongside your broccoli? A small study published in the journal Appetite this week reported that preschool children might actually eat fewer calories when dessert is served right alongside their meal instead of afterwards.
The study out of Purdue University measured how the timing of dessert made a difference in how much lunch 23 chidren ate. Half of the 2-5 year old children were served a chocolate chip cookie alongside their lunch on Thursdays and Fridays while the other half received their dessert after their lunch plates were cleared. Eight weeks later, they switched groups. Thursday’s lunch entrée was fish and Friday was pasta, two favorites of this primarily Asian and Caucasian group of children.
Accounting for age, room, menu rotation, type of meal, and presence of morning snack, researchers found that children consumed 9% more calories overall when the cookie was served after lunch trays were cleared.
Portion size was also addressed by rotating in 50% larger portions of entrée, vegetable and fruit at certain meals, but surprisingly portion size was not found to factor into total calorie intake. The authors surmised that the results might be because the kids served dessert at the same time as lunch filled up sooner and chose to eat less food overall.