Tuesday, March 7, 2017

How to get healthy eating habits right from the start

I am an awful eater. Awful. I am the first one to snub my nose at a spear of asparagus. I am a chronic snacker and all day grazer. And I am continuously trying to break up with my forever love - soda. Not to mention my limited requirements of what foods I will actually ingest.

As a child I was one of the pickiest eaters ever (Sorry mom and dad! I totally apologize for that year I decided I was only going to eat plain waffles for all three meals...and snacks.). And to this day I am still pretty choosy on what I eat.

Don't get me wrong, most days I know I need to eat like an adult though and grab something healthy. I understand that while donuts are the gift of food gods that they aren't the best choice for everyday consumption (although I've done my hardest to make that statement a reality), and eating well means more than just meat and salads (and as picky as I am what I really mean is just meat because salads don't make my cut.).

Sometime after I graduated from college I made a conscientious effort to eat better. I am still an awful eater, but I have at least branched out beyond waffles and plain chicken. As I became a mom, eating healthier became even more important to me - not only for myself, but for my children as well. I knew I wanted to set a good example and establish healthier eating habits for my children right from the start.

As a first time mom, when it became time for Cute to graduate into the delicious world of pureed foods I was so overwhelmed with all of the options. I knew he needed to give rice cereal a whirl with a mixture of fruits and veggies, but those first few times I went down the baby food aisle I couldn't help but feel lost as to which brand to feed him. I would read the labels and think, "But I just want plain sweet potatoes..." or "Don't apples already have sugar in them?" and "What the heck is puree concentrate?".

Fortunately almost all of my girlfriends had babies before me, and I remember speaking with a close friend about my concerns one day, and she mentioned Earth's Best. She listened to my questions, and didn't laugh at my fears that if I fed my poor son the wrong baby food he would be destined for a life of addiction to donuts like his mom. She said, "Try this brand. It's literally [insert food name] and water - nothing added. Simple. Easy. Go from there."

And thus a love affair was born. After giving a few initial products a test run, I was quickly smitten with the Earth's Best line of organic products for babies and it became my go to for my little one's nutrition.  From providing first foods for each of the three Cute's to super delicious snacks that each of the three eat today, Earth's Best is one of the few consistent brands that hits my grocery cart each week.

Because snacks are life when you become a mom, rarely have I made the mistake to leave home with out some of our Earth's Best favorites.

Cute still loves most of the snacks to this day.

The Crunchin' Crackers are one of his go-tos and will always make the request list.

L. C. loves the yogurt pouches and the cookies the best. I've professed my love for the pouch before, and these are so nice to be able to refrigerate or freeze for the days we are constantly on the go!

And Baby Cute isn't one to shy away from the Letter of the Day cookies and is obsessed with the granola bars - so much so that we had a recent meltdown at Target when she recognized the box as we were shopping and she wasn't going to be satisfied until she ate one right then.

The Dollar Spot is way more fun when you aren't hangry...

But I totally get it.  I'm not ashamed to say the granola bars might have provided me the occasional snack a time or two as well. And the cookies...lets just say YUM!

An added bonus is that several of the products are peanut and allergy free, which means they are school friendly! As mom with children who have had food allergies and knowing how hard it is to find healthy, allergy free, and good tasting snacks that all kids will love for class parties or sports snacks is tough I am forever thankful that my friend gave me such good advice all those years ago!

Are the best eaters in the world? No - not even one bit. Do love things like french fries and cupcakes? Absolutely! (Listen, I'm still their mom, and I am still unfortunately the donut queen of the South.)

But that I am happy that I've at least been able to lay the groundwork for what I hope is a healthier future. I love that I have been able to provide delicious tasting, yet healthy foods and snacks to my children right from the get go, and that that task has been made easier with the help of Earth's Best.

Do you have any special tips or tricks to get healthy eaters right from the start? 
Share with us!

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