Everything, and I do mean everything, is a controversy, debate, conversation to be had, thought provoking discussion, difficult, sensitive, whatever you want to call it – it is anxiety producing to broach any topic with anyone these days. The latest (or one of the latest) things up for discussion? Snacks.
I am not saying that I don’t have an opinion, because I do, and I’ll touch on that later. But, does everything have to be an either or, right or wrong, responsible parent or irresponsible parent, good citizen or bad citizen kind of thing?
You do you, I’ll do me. It will all work out. Our kids will be fine, and we will be fine.
Some of you reading this are very health conscious. Some of you are not. Some of you have children who need extra calories. Some of you have children who could stand to decrease their caloric intake. Some of you have super cooperative and even tempered children, some of you do not. And these are not things to shrug off … they impact the decisions that you make, the battles you choose, and how you feel about snacks – and apparently there is a lot to think about when it comes to snacking.
And who am I, or anyone else, to judge you for what you think makes sense for your family.
Do kids need snacks throughout the day? At the park? After a sport? Once or even twice a day at school? What should the snack be? Should they be FORCED to eat the snack? So many decisions, so many points for controversy.
Here are my thoughts:
- If you want your child to be hungry at breakfast, lunch, and dinner, they cannot have free access to food throughout the day – whatever that food may be.
- If you don’t want your children to eat junk food – don’t buy it. Personally, I think when out and about or at special events, treats are OK. Your definition of a ‘treat’ may vary greatly from mine.
- If you stress out about whether or not to give your child snacks, try to refocus your energy on offering snacks that contribute to their overall nutrition for the day. Check out these great suggestions from my friend and colleague, Trina O’Boyle, over at O’Boy Organic.
- Changing the world is not for everyone. If you want to fight school snacks or sport snacks, go you! If improving the culture of snacking in organized activities is not your calling, you can still control what your child eats, and what you offer as snack when it’s your turn. Send in the fruit and water bottles – most kids will accept it.
What are your thoughts? We would love to hear from you!