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How to Eat Healthy Meals in a Fast Paced Lifestyle

People have a lot of excuses why they’re not eating healthy foods. Among the most common of these reasons is the lack of time to think about selecting the right foods and cooking them for themselves and their household. These people generally just grab fast food or take-out rather than the healthier foods, and most of the time, these quick meal fixes are filled with undesirable fats, bad cholesterol, sugar, and empty calories. All the same, no matter how little time you spend in the kitchen or at the supermarket, there still are ways in which you’ll be able to eat in a healthy manner even with the lack of time. Learning the quick healthy eating technique can make a lot of difference in fixing your diet.

Eating nutritious foods begins with choosing nutritious ingredients, but if you lack time, you may feel that spending time in the supermarket will not fit into your schedule.  Maximize your time by planning ahead in a bi-weekly manner.  Instead of going to the store each time you need an ingredient, make a list and keep your pantry, refrigerator, and freezer stocked with good, healthy ingredients. You can create your shopping list while eating lunch, during a meeting, or while you are waiting in line at the bank. A list will also help you curb your compulsory buying, which is when we buy many the foods that may not be good for the health.

Along with planning your grocery list, likewise plan your meals. If you are left with little time to cook during the week, you may alternatively try making a couple of healthy meals ahead during the weekend and then putting them in your freezer. Before going to work in the morning, just place the frozen dinner in the refrigerator for thawing and then cook it in the oven to when you get home from work. This will also help you avoid the need to buy fast food.

In times when you find yourself craving for a quick meal and prefer to order out, go for the healthy options. Instead of selecting burger and fries, for example, consider chicken breast alternatives. There are fast food restaurants that serve salads and fruit, but beware of the dressing, which can have heaps of fats and empty calories. Keep nutritious drinks on hand at home instead of buying a soda as well. Better yet, dump the idea of having the burger, pizza, and Mexican joints entirely and choose a sandwich or sub instead, where you could choose a whole wheat bread and ask them to omit the mayonnaise.

Healthy eating on the run may not be easy. However, setting aside bit more time into preparing it will be worth that extra effort, because you’ll be living a healthier lifestyle in the long run. Practicing these habits will help you to quickly eat but in a healthier way that is very possible.

Major Lifestyle Change: How To Deal With Your Child’s Obesity

Obesity is a major problem now faced by many societies all over the world. But it is especially alarming in children.

In the United States alone, it has been reported that there are over nine million children, aged six and above, suffering from obesity and their numbers are still increasing.

Asian children, although generally still considered healthy, are now also at a great risk especially with the rising popularity of fast food joints and junk food kiosks.

In the Philippines, a simple trip to the supermarket could be a veritable battlefield for a child and his parent with the high volume of snacks and candies on display at the snack aisle, or aisles, as the case may be.

Childhood obesity is not only a problem for the health risks it poses (type-2 diabetes, heart problems in adulthood), but also for possible humiliation and depression if the child is subjected to public ridicule and bullying.

Most parents are already aware that children need to eat healthy and exercise more to lessen the risk of becoming obese. But being aware isnt enough. As a parent, it is your duty to make sure that your child lives a healthy, normal life.

Be the example
To set your child on the right path to health and fitness, first things first, assess your own wellness habits. More often than not, parents of obese children tend to be obese themselves.

Be sure that you yourself are willing to make certain sacrifices in your eating and exercising habits so as to set a good example for your children.

Even if you are not obese, it is still a good idea to set a wellness goal for yourself. Show her that you are an active, health-conscious parent and there is a strong chance that your child will follow suit.

Get them involved
Children are naturally curious little beings. Ever notice how your little one seems to cling to your every word and replicates your every action?

Make good use of his curiosity and her inquisitiveness by letting them join you in preparing meals.

If they are younger, and cant really help in the duties in the kitchen, let them help by naming fruits and vegetables in the pantry (but make sure you know what those veggies are and how to prepare them, should they decide to ask).

Older children can be put to good use in mixing together ingredients, or you can also stand watch over them as they pour ingredients and press buttons on the food processor.

If you have money to spare, you can also purchase ceramic knives that are especially suited for younger ‘chefs. These knives are rather sharp when it comes to cutting food but is incredibly dull on delicate fingers.

Same goes for physical activity. Choose one that can easily involve the whole family, such as bike-riding, running in the backyard or simply walking around the block.

Be understanding but firm
Lastly, be prepared for a confrontation with your child once you decide that the whole family needs to be healthier.

For some children, even some adults, the junk food has been a form of addiction. Not as serious as a drug addiction, but it can be just as difficult to break.

If there should ever come a time when your child starts wailing and screaming about the hideous green thing on his plate, dont get mad. Stay calm. Yelling at him at the same time will not help matters. If anything, it will make things worse.

As with most tantrum fits, its best to ignore them. Let them wail and scream all they want; if you need to, carry the child to a safe, isolated area where he can let the tantrum run its course. Then calmly sit him down to explain why you both need to make a change in your diet.

But whatever you do, dont use food as a reward or a punishment. Try to firmly stick to the rules you have set for the whole family. Remember that you are not depriving your child of fun foods; instead you are helping him make better decisions, health-wise.

In other words, be a mentor, not a dictator.

Modeling a Healthy Lifestyle for Your Child

According to research, kids tend to model their parents’ behavior as they grow and throughout adulthood.  This means that if you practice healthy habits and a balanced lifestyle, you child is more likely to do so as well.  This means that if your child sees you exercising, eating right, reading, rather than watching television, and engaging in other healthy habits, he will probably model his behaviors accordingly.

Healthy Eating

Mealtimes and the food choices associated with them represent just one of the many opportunities parents have to model healthy eating habits for their children.  Parents should never skip breakfast.  Not only is this meal important for adults, studies show that kids who eat breakfast are more alert and perform better in school.  This may mean going to bed a bit earlier to make time for breakfast for you and your child.

According to the director of the Optimal Weight for Life program at Children’s Hospital Boston, David Ludwig, M.D., Ph.D., parents must start early to teach good nutrition habits and avoid future issues.  Ludwig says that children learn their habits, both good and bad, from those who love them.  Parents should not only teach kids about nutritious choices, but make these choices themselves so their children see the behavior modeled by a loved one.  If you’re just learning about nutrition yourself, talk to your pediatrician about nutritious choices and eating habits for children.

Fight the Good Fight

Parents, interested in teaching their children nutritious eating habits, are competing against powerful messages from the media, targeting children.  These messages rarely promote healthy eating habits.

Serve Kid-Friendly Foods – Make fresh fruit smoothies and serve them with cut, raw vegetables alongside a yogurt dip.  Kids love fruit salads with low-fat yogurt dressing and grilled vegetable kabobs.  Add some grilled lean meat in between the vegetables on the kabobs for protein and iron.
Teach Your Child About Quality – Invite your child to go grocery shopping with you and challenge him to help make healthy selections.  Show him how to read nutrition labels and spot hidden fat and sugars.
Grow Your Own – Whether it’s in the back yard, or inside an apartment on a sunny sill, children love the idea of growing their own vegetables and herbs.  Kids may venture to try eating a tomato grown in their own backyards before they would agree to try a store bought one.
Try a Kid-Oriented Cookbook – Cookbooks especially for children or that have a wide variety of kid friendly recipes abound in bookstores and online.  Try the newest cookbook by chef Emeril Lagasse called, There’s a Chef in My World.

Exercise Daily

Get out and exercise everyday with your child — whether it’s taking a stroll around the park, playing tag outside, or a game of hide-and-seek indoors, kids benefit from daily physical activity.  Playing together allows time for social and emotional growth as well as physical fitness.  Your child’s pediatrician can tell you whether you child is overweight and what types of exercise, and how much, are appropriate.  Parents who regularly engage in physical activity that are too strenuous in length and intensity should consider including their children in the warm-up or cool down portions of their routines.  For example, include your child in stretching exercises before taking off on a five mile run.  Or allow him to take a walk through the neighborhood with you afterward for a cool-down routine you can do together.

Set Goals and Limits

Set goals and limits for yourself and your child.  Write your goals on a whiteboard or large notepad for the whole family to see.  Goals might include things like getting one hour of exercise everyday or playing outside together for 30 minutes five times per week.  Put limits on the amount of time allowed for television viewing.  Limit yourself as well so your child sees and begins to model your self control.

A Healthy Lifestyle Contributes to Healthy Relationships

You and your child will bond and grow in your relationship as you engage in healthy habits together.  If you need reassurance about whether your exercise schedule or nutrition plan is right for your child, discuss your goals for yourself and your child with your pediatrician on your next visit.