Living with kids can be tough if you’re a mom or dad looking to diet or eat well in the home. Pasta, grilled cheeses, chips, cookies, gummy candies, and other snack foods are typical go-tos, and it’s hard to resist the temptations to eat their leftovers or munch on their kid-approved snacks in the home.
And the snacking can add up fast, where you might be eating a couple extra hundred calories a day. Yet, you can focus on eating clean and finding the willpower to maintain a wholesome diet regardless of what your kids are eating in the day. Here are some tips to help make the process easier and to develop better eating habits when at home.
Keep Your Clean Food in Sight
We are more inclined to eat what’s visible, so keep your healthy fruit bowl or low carb protein bars and chips right in clear view. Make it easy to grab the healthy foods for yourself and do so first, before reaching for whatever else is there in your kids’ collection.
If your snacks are out, you will be more tempted to enjoy them and not feel the urge to snack on the junk food. Plus, you can use healthy substitutes, so you can put your Quest Protein Chips right next to their potato chips and you can put the Quest Peanut Butter Cups next to their supply of treats and cookies.
Plan Your Meals and Make Theirs Separate
You can still give your kids mac n’ cheese but make a healthier pasta dish for yourself and the rest of your family at home. If you have your own clean version of what your kids are eating, you won’t feel the need to eat their boxed mac n’ cheese. Plus, you can also vary some of the recipes. Think of it as offering a kids menu at home. You wouldn’t order from one at a restaurant, so why would you do it at home?
If your child wants pasta with butter on it, you can still use that same pasta but make a salad or piece of chicken the focus of your meal and eat a small portion of the pasta as your starch. Play around with what you’re making and what’s available to find portion sizes and slight variations to slim down dishes that work best for your healthy lifestyle.
Throw Out Their Food When They’re Done
If they are finished with dinner, it can be tempting to finish what they don’t. After all, a plate of mac and cheese is a plate of mac and cheese regardless of who it was intended for. Don’t finish their leftovers. If you’re setting a good example, you finished your meal already. You don’t need to finish theirs. It’s okay to be a bit wasteful because child servings are much smaller than adults so it won’t have the same moral and economic impact.
Eat Enough in the Day and Don’t Skip Meals
Skipping meals can leave you hungry, and when you’re hungry you’re not able to make as wise choices with your food and eating habits. And that might make you crave more snacks and unhealthy foods, too. And what is in most easily accessible snack foods? Loads of sugars and carbs. A dangerous cocktail when talking nutrition terms.
So, make sure to eat adequately for meals and snacks so that you don’t reach for the bag of cookies or cheesy crackers out of hunger or a craving. This will help you think more clearly and resist the temptations.