Snack Down!

Most parents found themselves nodding assent as they read Jennifer Steinhauer’s excellent article on snacking. She makes the point that snacking has assumed a huge role in the daily nutrition of kids and worries that a lot of the snack demands are met by processed or junk foods. Yes, snacking is all-pervasive. The pace of life is hectic and rushing from one activity to the other is almost always punctuated by snacks. but, as Thomas Rogers points out, one can try to pick healthier options say apple slices or carrots over vending machine horrors. The problem is one of time. For the parents juggling a job, errands and multiple kids activities time is dear. After a long day the idea of cleaning , peeling and chopping fresh fruits and vegetables is hardly appealing. Also, the allure of ready to go snacks which will please the kids is hard to resist. But you know what is even harder? Just saying NO! Some of us will remember living by the rules of eating your dinner even if it was not your favorite thing, no snacking later to make up for it but as any parent will vouch that is a hard option. Perhaps the solution is to try to provide healthy snacks and limit them to whatever is actually required to prevent the development of a grazing habit. Tackling a full on snack tantrum in sight of the vending machine and the eyes of the entire room is hard, squeezing out a few more minutes to chop up apples instead if paying through the nose for pre-cut stuff at the grocery store is also hard but filling up the kids with junk ia\s not an option at all. Oh well, no one said parenting was a piece of cake!

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