I decided today’s post needed a theme (beyond the usual “how to get your kids to eat more than 3 different foods” theme which is a given). Today’s theme is short and sweet. It came to me because I adore the summer and am one of those people who is forever lamenting (some haters might call it whining) “the summer goes sooo fast, why can’t March go fast and July feel like an eternity?” Why? Because it’s short and sweet. And that got me thinking about your kids (who I am safely assuming are also short and sweet) and what summertime food we could find that they will actually love eating DESPITE the fact that it just may be good for them. Pineapple! Which fits the theme oh so beautifully…. It’s short and sweet, after all. Seriously, if you come upon a “tall” pineapple, run away.
Dr. Oz has a 24-hour Wonder Cleanse (that’s not my personal endorsement, that’s the actual name of his cleanse) which he says helps to “optimize the efficiency of the most important detoxifying organs in the body.” Refreshingly, unlike other cleanses that should rightly be called fasts, on this one you eat 3 meals of minimal whole foods and unlimited snacks between meals of a juice made with pineapple (and kale, always with the kale!). Why pineapple? According to Dr. Oz, it contains a digestive enzyme that encourages our own sluggish systems to get cracking on digesting food and clearing out the “gunk.” That enzyme, bromelain helps the body break down and digest proteins. Pineapple also contains insoluble fibre (nature’s broom!) and “has anti-inflammatory, and anti-clotting properties.” Plus, it’s full of vitamins C and A, both powerful antioxidants and immune boosters in the seemingly endless fight against the barrage of colds and flu that go hand in hand with being a kid.
You know what else seems to come with being a kid? An all-consuming NEED for sugar.
You do everything you can do train their little palates from an early age. Start with the veggies, not the fruits. Birthday cakes sweetened with applesauce. Wait til they’re safely asleep before falling face first into a pint of Rocky Road lest you set a bad example. And yet, one inevitable day they turn to you with a glazed, maniacal look on their face and you know it’s over. Just hand over the candy/cupcake/ring pop and nobody gets hurt. Guess what? You’re not a horrible parent. They’re actually wired that way. According to research from the Monell Chemical Sense Centre, “a preference for sweet, caloric substances during (periods of) rapid growth may have given children an evolutionary advantage when calories were scarce.” Researchers suspect that children’s growing bones actually produce a hormone that drives them to crave sugar. This drive slows down when growth does (around 16) but until then, super sweet pineapple may be just the healthy trade off kids will go for.
Back to that theme… this post is short and sweet because did I mention: summer is ticking away and I gotta get out there. Its 30 degrees and not a cloud in sight… sweet… but too short!