Kid Food

Hi all, I am new here and one of my biggest problems is kid food. It is always in my house, cooked, on the table or stove, and either will go in the garbage or in my stomach. (sometimes I do save it but they never eat it, and then it's there waiting for me at 10pm). By kid food I mean all the things adults do not/should not buy for themselves on a regular basis - mac n cheese, chicken fingers/nuggets, fish sticks, french friend/tator tots, meat ravioli, cheese tortellini with pesto sauce, hot dogs, carrots with butter, corn with butter and salt, granola bars, string cheese, Breyers Ice Cream, Gummies, peanut butter, american cheese, mountains of fruit - berries, grapes, bananas, ziti with sauce and ton of cheese, brownies for school, cupcakes for school, Nutella. And that is just off the top of my head. Slowly we are trying to get them off obviously bad things but my kids are both under 5 and they are not going to eat grilled chicken and lettuce wraps. Just wondering if anyone else has this as a huge temptation in their house.
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Replies

  • JoanaMHill
    JoanaMHill Posts: 265 Member
    I'm twenty-three years old and half of that describes my own eating habits.

    Honestly as long as you aren't gorging on an entire bag of fruit snacks or chicken fingers or whatever, what's the harm?
  • ZRx4
    ZRx4 Posts: 158 Member
    Hi all, I am new here and one of my biggest problems is kid food. It is always in my house, cooked, on the table or stove, and either will go in the garbage or in my stomach. (sometimes I do save it but they never eat it, and then it's there waiting for me at 10pm). By kid food I mean all the things adults do not/should not buy for themselves on a regular basis - mac n cheese, chicken fingers/nuggets, fish sticks, french friend/tator tots, meat ravioli, cheese tortellini with pesto sauce, hot dogs, carrots with butter, corn with butter and salt, granola bars, string cheese, Breyers Ice Cream, Gummies, peanut butter, american cheese, mountains of fruit - berries, grapes, bananas, ziti with sauce and ton of cheese, brownies for school, cupcakes for school, Nutella. And that is just off the top of my head. Slowly we are trying to get them off obviously bad things but my kids are both under 5 and they are not going to eat grilled chicken and lettuce wraps. Just wondering if anyone else has this as a huge temptation in their house.

    100daysofrealfood.com

    Great info for eating "real" food. We just don't buy stuff like that here, well some of it... We love fruit, peanut butter, homemade granola bars, Justin's chocolate almond butter is amazing!, to name some. My advice is, if you don't want the temptation, get rid of it and get healthier options,they're just as yummy and better for everybody around :)
  • Athijade
    Athijade Posts: 2,832 Member
    Hi all, I am new here and one of my biggest problems is kid food. It is always in my house, cooked, on the table or stove, and either will go in the garbage or in my stomach. (sometimes I do save it but they never eat it, and then it's there waiting for me at 10pm). By kid food I mean all the things adults do not/should not buy for themselves on a regular basis - mac n cheese, chicken fingers/nuggets, fish sticks, french friend/tator tots, meat ravioli, cheese tortellini with pesto sauce, hot dogs, carrots with butter, corn with butter and salt, granola bars, string cheese, Breyers Ice Cream, Gummies, peanut butter, american cheese, mountains of fruit - berries, grapes, bananas, ziti with sauce and ton of cheese, brownies for school, cupcakes for school, Nutella. And that is just off the top of my head. Slowly we are trying to get them off obviously bad things but my kids are both under 5 and they are not going to eat grilled chicken and lettuce wraps. Just wondering if anyone else has this as a huge temptation in their house.

    I eat so many of those things. I laugh at the idea that because I am an adult that I shouldn't be eating those. What the heck is wrong with them? The idea of "bad" food is hilarious and WRONG. Unless you have a medical reason or allergy.

    And there is also no such thing as "kid food". They eat what you serve them.
  • Lesleycali
    Lesleycali Posts: 236 Member
    I have a 3 and a 5 yr old and over the past few months I've weaned them off of the processed food and snack food. I figured if I wanted to eat healthier I should instill this way of eating in my kids too. Overall they don't even seem to care. The one treat we keep around is popsicles, but we are going to start making our own. (and that's the kind of thing I won't binge on, if it was ice cream that would be another story lol) And I don't deny them stuff either, if we are at a party or out and about they can have treats. I just keep it our of my pantry.

    Breakfast is oatmeal with a bit of maple syrup and fruit, or plain yogurt and honey and nuts, homemade granola that is sweetened with just a tiny bit of honey. Eggs and sweet potatoes. Snacks are carrots and humus, dried fruit, seaweed, cheese (the block kind, not string cheese) and fruit, tomato and feta, nuts, apples and nut butters, rice cakes... tortilla chips on occasion.

    Lunch is typical sandwiches, leftovers, more fruit or applesauce, cheese quesadillas, avocado, veggie sticks, etc

    Dinner they eat what I make. This has really opened up my 5 yr old, he'll look at something new and say yuck gross! but then he'll taste it and usually love it. I don't offer any dessert, even fruit, so if they are hungry they will eat dinner. You can always try to make versions of the more processed high calorie meals yourself at home. There are recipes for kid friendly chicken nuggets, usually just chicken breast dipped in egg and flour and sautéed. Pasta can be ok, just throw in broccoli and peas and greatly reduce the amount of cheese. Take what you know they like and make versions that include more healthy stuff and exclude the high sugar, high calorie, high additives...

    Just work bit by bit, maybe start with the in between snacks, offering more healthy options, then switch over breakfast and lunch, and finally dinner (or whatever order works for you.)

    The nice thing about the preschool/ toddler age is that they can adapt pretty quickly, and not even fully remember what it is their missing (well after a few months anyway!) I think it would be much harder to try to change the food for 8 and over.

    ETA: this is all to say that if you find yourself tempted to eat their food, just don't have it in the house. Have options you feel better about for yourself and them. GL!
  • LKArgh
    LKArgh Posts: 5,173 Member
    If you consider the food not healthy enough for you to eat, or at least not frequently, then it is time to stop having this food for your kids. What is not healthy for an adult, is even worse for a child. However, everything you describe could easily be made with healthier recipes (you probably are already doing this, I obviously do not know how you cook) or could be served in reasonable portions as a treat (e.g. a teaspoon or two of nutella on a slice of bread is a nice treat, half a jar of nutella on a loaf of bread is not). For sure losing weight or eating healthy does not mean grilled chicken and lettuce!
    To give examples on some of the foods you mentioned, I make oven baked pasta with cheese frequently, and there are recipes which limit fat and are not even that high in calories (I do not mean with weird replacements, normal pasta and cheese), homemade chicken nuggets and fish fingers are easy to make, healthy and low calorie (especially if oven baked and not fried), fries are not the devil and if you eat too many, try oven baked fries for a much healthier alternative (my kids actually prefer them as they are more crispy), vegetables with butter are perfectly fine and healthy as long as you do not use a stick of butter per serving and I cannot even imagine why you would want to limit fruit or eliminate ice cream!
  • MissJay75
    MissJay75 Posts: 768 Member
    We have a ton of high calorie and calorie dense foods in our house that appeal to kids because my kids both struggle to gain weight. My daughter specifically was diagnosed "failure to thrive" due to her lack of weight gain. We weigh her once a week and I count her calories to make sure she gets enough.

    So what do I do? Count my calories. Log EVERY thing. Work out more so I can eat more :) I have found that if I am not feeling terribly deprived in my own diet, it's way easier to stay out of the kids' stuff. And if I decide to have a treat, I fit it into my calories for the day.
  • hearthwood
    hearthwood Posts: 794 Member
    Oh yes, it's always a problem. Just avoid it, I like peanut butter but make sure it's all natural, You'll have to have your own healthy foods in the house, to help you stay away from the kid stuff.
  • dbmata
    dbmata Posts: 12,952 Member
    Something I've never understood, but I'd like to know... why do people feed kids such terrible foods?

    If you wouldn't eat them, why would you force them on your kid? They're too young, naive, and dumb to have food choices, you serve them food, they eat. Done. If they don't eat something, then they don't eat. They'll get hungry and eat.

    What happened to kids in history when those foods weren't available or hadn't been invented yet? What did they eat?
  • rebeccaisafish
    rebeccaisafish Posts: 87 Member
    Your kids might not eat lettuce and grilled chicken wraps, but they will eat healthy food if you offer it and nothing else. It may not happen over night, but they will eat healthy food if that's all thats available. Kids won't let themselves starve.

    I suggest you don't make a big deal out of it though. Don't tell them you're taking away their favourite foods and giving them something they won't like, because then they will be ready to fight for what they are losing. Just do it.

    I have a two year old and she eats better than anyone I know (myself included). If you only have healthy food they will learn to love it.
  • elliej
    elliej Posts: 504 Member
    I was not brought up with 'kid food' I ate what the adults ate, maybe they will eat chicken and lettuce, have you tried?
  • Without being drastic you could gradually adapt those foods so that they are healthier versions, I agree with most comments about developping good eating habits at a young age. The nutrient you need to achieve a healthy weight loss are the same for your children, fried food and excess fat is not what their body needs.

    You life will be simplier if you all eat the same type of food, you on the other hand must control your portion size to fit it in your calorie goal.
  • Phrick
    Phrick Posts: 2,765 Member
    If you consider the food not healthy enough for you to eat, or at least not frequently, then it is time to stop having this food for your kids. What is not healthy for an adult, is even worse for a child.[/b]

    I love this!!
  • Athijade
    Athijade Posts: 2,832 Member
    Would someone like to tell me what is actually WRONG with this list though? How are these "bad" foods. You can eat any of them, lose weight, AND still be healthy.

    "...mac n cheese, chicken fingers/nuggets, fish sticks, french friend/tator tots, meat ravioli, cheese tortellini with pesto sauce, hot dogs, carrots with butter, corn with butter and salt, granola bars, string cheese, Breyers Ice Cream, Gummies, peanut butter, american cheese, mountains of fruit - berries, grapes, bananas, ziti with sauce and ton of cheese, brownies for school, cupcakes for school, Nutella."

    I had a steak sandwich, fries, watermelon, a small piece of birthday cake, and ice cream last night. That doesn't mean I am suddenly unhealthy. Plus, fruit, vegetables with butter (the real stuff), pasta, string cheese, peanut butter, and ice cream are all a part of my basic diet. None of these are BAD. Stop labeling food as bad!!! It's silly and unneeded.

    Except Nutella... that stuff is just gross.
  • fitmommy2012
    fitmommy2012 Posts: 451 Member
    Sounds so much like me!! I struggle with that as well!!! I have found that I need to prepare healthier meals for my son (and the kids I babysit for) and not purchase any kind of junk related foods, then I am less tempted to eat them!!!
  • slashkiss
    slashkiss Posts: 74 Member
    My 3 year old loves salad. She actually asks for it. The only thing I buy for her that is her "kid" food is frozen waffles and mac-n-cheese cups for those times I don't feel like cooking. She generally tries what I cook and if she absolutely hates it then she can have a snack later which would be cheese, almonds, fruit or some veggies. Kids will eat real food not just "kid" food. The trick is to demonstrate healthy eating habits and involve them in the cooking process. My daughter loves making dinner every night and is very proud to eat whatever we made.
  • StaciMarie1974
    StaciMarie1974 Posts: 4,138 Member
    My kids are 12 & older. I keep some of these foods on hand as easy things for them to make for themselves, especially now that they are home for the summer. But I also keep fresh fruit, veggies, etc. and encourage them to eat a variety of food. I even sometimes do an easy dinner of taquitos, chicken nuggets, etc. for ME + veggies and such. On the other hand, I bake them - which is less grease, fat than frying. And when I eat mac & cheese, I have a small portion. When the kids are active -they need a decent amount of calories per day as they have high metabolism. And they're not making up for years of laziness like I am!
  • No ine is saying that they are BAD food just not the best for a growing child.
  • katematt313
    katematt313 Posts: 624 Member
    I keep a few things for my daughter that I don't eat. The way to avoid temptation is to have healthy, filling food that you should eat in the house for you to nosh on, and also for you not to get hungry and vulnerable around delicious stuff. You can also work on giving your kids the healthier equivalent of the food they really like to eat.
  • tempehforever
    tempehforever Posts: 183 Member
    I think an important step--in terms of feeding both kids and yourself--is to stop using labels of "good" and "bad" food. Nothing you listed is "bad" enough to need to be banned from the household, nor do what you consider "good" foods (like chicken and lettuce) need to be reserved for adults only. Adults CAN eat gummi bears sometimes, and kids CAN (and do) eat lettuce.

    Reading rec: Ellyn Satter is a dietician and expert in helping families achieve healthy, balanced attitudes towards foods (both for kids AND adults). I recommend checking out her online resources, like this one: http://www.ellynsatterinstitute.org/htf/howtofeed.php
  • Athijade
    Athijade Posts: 2,832 Member
    No ine is saying that they are BAD food just not the best for a growing child.

    Not really. What is wrong with chicken with some breading on it? How is that not okay for a growing child? Or the same with fish prepared like that. Or fruit. Or any other item on the list.

    I am sorry but the worst thing, in my opinion, that you can do is label foods as "good" and "bad". Eat a varied diet that includes all different sorts of foods. Moderation is the name of the game. It is honestly very sad to me to see this sort of mind set.