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If They Make It, They Will Eat It

For holiday meals I enjoy making new recipes, but my children are not always open to trying new things. When these new dishes are being passed around the table my children often express hesitation or flat out refusal. Please tell me my kids aren't the only ones to do this. In an attempt to increase their acceptance and expose them to new ingredients, I decided to enlist them in searching out new recipes to make them together.

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Categories: nutrition, lifestyle,


9 Tips for a Terrific Turkey

Thanksgiving is a time to follow family traditions, from baking Grandma's classic pie recipe to watching the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. But it can also be a time of great anxiety, especially if this is your first time hosting such a food centered holiday. Don’t despair, rev up your cooking engines and start planning for the Thanksgiving holiday.

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Categories: nutrition, lifestyle,


5 Steps to Stress Free Family Meals

Preparing balanced meals for your family may be one of the main sources of stress in your life.  These 5 steps will help you reduce your stress level, save you time and money, and result in a more relaxed meal time with your family.

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Categories: nutrition, lifestyle,


6 Benefits of Cooking with Your Son + Recipe

Why doesn't my son like helping in the kitchen? Maybe I just assume he didn't. Maybe I just figured cooking wasn't something he would be interested in, because (gasp) he is a boy. His five year old sister is the one that always wants to be with me in the kitchen mixing, chopping, and washing.

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Back to School - Back to Snacking

It’s back-to-school time – which means after-school (and in-the-car) snacks. Busy parents also need snacks which are easy to make and grab for both the child and the parent.

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Categories: nutrition, health-notes,


Should I Let my Kids Drink Fruit Juice?

100% fruit juice is made entirely from fruit. It contains vitamins and minerals. It provides energy in the form of fructose which is a type of sugar. It tastes good.

Juice can be quickly consumed, but unfortunately it doesn't keep tummies full as well as whole fruit since the fiber is missing.

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Categories: nutrition,


What You Need to Know about Kids and Energy Drinks

Energy drinks are still relatively new in our grocery stores, but the drinks are becoming popular with all ages. It's easy to confuse energy drinks with sports drinks, which can be a problem for our kids. They each serve two different purposes and energy drinks are not recommended for children.

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Categories: nutrition,


Should My Family Stop Eating Gluten?

My five year old daughter was chewing gum and I asked her where she had gotten the gum. She responded, "Don't worry, it is gluten-free."

Gluten-free awareness has gotten so great that in addition to my daughter's awareness, my church is also being gluten sensitive and offering gluten-free bread for communion. With gluten being in the spotlight does that mean that everyone should stop eating gluten?

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Categories: nutrition,


Gardening with Kids

Spring is here finally, and seed packets have been looming tauntingly in the stores for weeks. If you are an avid gardener, I am betting you already have seedlings growing in your house, and have planted your cool crops outside. I challenge you this year to include your children with your gardening adventures!

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Categories: nutrition, development,


Folic Acid, a Key to Preventing Birth Defects

January is birth defect prevention month. Getting enough folic acid, a B vitamin prior to getting pregnant and while pregnant will decrease the chances of a baby being born with a birth defect by 50-70%.

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Categories: nutrition, pregnancy,


Are Canned Fruits and Vegetables Bad for My Kids?

Most people are surprised to learn that canned and frozen fruits and vegetables are not bad but good! The nutrient content of canned and frozen fruits and vegetables is comparable to that of their fresh counterparts. I've heard people say, "If it isn't fresh, it doesn't count."Thankfully, that just isn't true. In some cases canned and frozen is even superior in nutrient content than fresh produce. For example studies have shown that fresh tomatoes have less lycopene than canned tomatoes. Lycopene is an antioxidant that is believed to protect against heart disease and certain cancers.

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Categories: nutrition,


Healthy Habits at Halloween

Halloween can be a difficult time when trying to balance the overload of sweet treats and the healthy lifestyle goals that we set for our family. Is it even possible to balance the two? I believe that it is, and with a few suggestions, you and your family can have your candy and eat it too. Parents need to remember that we need to be good role models for our children, especially when it comes to what and how much Halloween candy we consume.

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Categories: nutrition, lifestyle,


10 Fun Ways to Get Your Children to Eat More Fruits & Veggies

When both of my children were toddlers they were great about eating a large variety of fruits and vegetables. They hadn't yet developed the green foods fear. Is that taught in school? Now that they are both in school they have taken the "no green food" pact and have become much more fruit and vegetable picky. It seems that one day strawberries are acceptable and the next day it is a forbidden fruit. Even though I get frustrated with them for being picky I know that it will do no good to force them or make them feel bad about not eating certain foods. My job as a parent is to introduce and reintroduce a variety of fruit and vegetables to them. Here are 10 ways I've supported and motivated my kids to try and enjoy fruits and vegetables.

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Categories: nutrition, health-notes,


Fact or Myth: Sugar Causes Hyperactivity

Question: Does sugar cause hyperactivity in children?

Answer: No, sugar does not cause hyperactivity in children. There is no scientific evidence to support this theory. The hyperactivity that parents observe in their children is likely situational. Think of the times that you typically offer high sugar foods. Many times these foods are consumed around celebrations, games or play time with friends or in other words, stimulating times where children are likely to be excited and more boisterous.

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Categories: nutrition, health-notes,


Cook with Your Kids

It's worth the mess. It's worth the extra patience that it can take to wait for your young child to scoop or stir at their own pace. It's worth it to cook with your kids. I just adore those moments when I step back and watch my kids stare into the oven door watching their pizza bake. I can just hear my daughter saying, "The crust is getting bigger, Mommy." She sees the science. She knows yeast makes gas bubbles that help the crust get bigger. She’s 3. No, everything doesn't have to be homemade, and I understand that sometimes it just isn't practical to involve the kids in every meal, but they can still contribute and take some responsibility.

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Categories: nutrition, parenting,