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Feed Your Kids Healthily Year-Round

By Paul Rothbart

It's important for kids to eat healthy foods, but it can be challenging. There are so many processes and sugar-heavy food competing for their attention. The holiday season can be a particularly tricky time to keep kids away from unhealthy snacks. There seems to be candy, cakes, and all kinds of sweets lurking around every corner. You want them to enjoy the holiday season but you can't let nutrition go for the six weeks or so the season lasts. Have no fear. There are colorful, festive, and tasty treats your kids will love that will still provide nutrition.

Choose Foods With Color

Children love bright colors and one of the most festive elements of the holidays is the brightly-colored lights and decorations. Make their food festive. Tasty vegetable treats such as cherry tomatoes, red peppers, sugar snap peas, and baby carrots are loaded with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. You can place them on a platter and arrange them in a colorful design that is sure to catch the eye. 

Use Pasta Substitutes

Most kids love spaghetti, noodles, and other kinds of pasta. They tend to be high in calories and carbohydrates. But you can use substitutes that are tasty, fun, and very healthy. Pastas made from whole wheat, red lentils, and chickpeas come in the same fun shapes but are far more healthy than traditional pasta. Another great option is spaghetti squash. A healthy vegetable, this type of squash can also provide fun for kids as they help to pull the noodles out of the skin. You can also buy a spiralizer and watch as your children make their own pasta from zucchini and other squashes. 

Use Fruit for Dessert

Kids, as well as many adults, love to have some dessert after dinner. A sweet treat to top off the meal. So many dessert favorites are loaded with unhealthy excess sugar. Get around this by serving fruit. Fruit is naturally sweet and packed with plenty of nutrition. It is also lower in calories and fructose is a better sugar source. Cherries and grapes are colorful fruits that are easy to eat. You could bake some apples and sprinkle cinnamon on top for a traditional holiday flavor. Strawberries dipped in dark chocolate provide some candy and the chocolate contains antioxidants. Get creative.

It can be hard to get kids to eat healthily, especially during the holiday season. But there are plenty of ways to serve them festive, delicious foods and snacks that will boost their health.

To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Hayward, Calif.

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