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#61 of 91 Old 05-06-2010, 03:56 PM
 
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I am really really worried about how we're handling food (and how it's grown, made, and sold) in this country. It's so hard to turn something around once it's this deeply entrenched and I feel like I'm down here bailing out my sinking ship with a Dixie cup. Or maybe siphoning it off with an Oreo Sipahh.
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#62 of 91 Old 05-06-2010, 07:04 PM
 
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won't eat even conventional brown eggs!
Um... she does realise brown eggs aren't healthier than white, right? They're not "wholemeal" eggs... just from different coloured chickens..? I mean, my sister used to refuse to make meringues with brown eggs because meringue is white so she figured the eggs should be too... but she was, like, eight. That is one of the oddest food hangups I've come across.

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#63 of 91 Old 05-07-2010, 01:08 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I am really really worried about how we're handling food (and how it's grown, made, and sold) in this country. It's so hard to turn something around once it's this deeply entrenched and I feel like I'm down here bailing out my sinking ship with a Dixie cup. Or maybe siphoning it off with an Oreo Sipahh.


I don't watch much tv so I had to Google that. Oh. My. God. Yet another reason why I can't let my children watch commercial tv.How can the people who develop these products sleep at night?
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#64 of 91 Old 05-07-2010, 01:26 AM
 
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Why is it we can't do anything these days without food being involved? I myself can't remember the last time I got together with my friends without food being involved somehow.
I love that part about being with friends- we all makes one or two things and share. BUT we all know each other's dietary quirks, and everything is home made (one close friend is paleo, some are gluten free, others are vegetarian, etc). On the other hand, it does bother me when I go to a social function (that isn't held with others who are sensitive to health) and everything is CRAP! No, I don't want my kids hyped on artificial colors or HFCS, or GMO grains... grr, that part does bother me.
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#65 of 91 Old 05-07-2010, 12:12 PM
 
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I love that part about being with friends- we all makes one or two things and share. BUT we all know each other's dietary quirks, and everything is home made (one close friend is paleo, some are gluten free, others are vegetarian, etc).
Yea, usually it is just something that friends do together, but after thinking of all the activities that people have where food ends up being involved, it dawned on me with a kind of horror that, wait, it's not just kids! When we go over to a friend's house after dinner, we always bring snacks, usually sweet (sure, homemade, but still!) and then there's the traditional roasting on peeps over the fire...everything we do involves food, even if we aren't hungry!

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#66 of 91 Old 05-07-2010, 10:17 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yea, usually it is just something that friends do together, but after thinking of all the activities that people have where food ends up being involved, it dawned on me with a kind of horror that, wait, it's not just kids! When we go over to a friend's house after dinner, we always bring snacks, usually sweet (sure, homemade, but still!) and then there's the traditional roasting on peeps over the fire...everything we do involves food, even if we aren't hungry!
There's an interesting article in this month's Atlantic on obesity and one of the things it mentions as part of our obesity culture is the fact that it's now socially acceptable to eat at any time, which wasn't the case 50+ years ago. I've asked my mom what snacks she ate as a child in the 50's and the question surprised her. She said they ate 3 meals a day and that was it, she didn't remember ever eating a snack at home other than popcorn on a weekend night. Now we eat at school, at church, at work, while shopping--you can stuff your pie hole 24 hours a day and no one will think anything of it until you're a candidate for bariatric surgery. Like grocery carts with a drink holder--you can't grocery shop w/o a soda or coffee!?! I had to explain the cupholder to my 5 y/o the other day--at Bass Pro Shop. And yes, we ate a box of popcorn while we were there!
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#67 of 91 Old 05-07-2010, 10:51 PM
 
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I would think you'd be in the majority at MDC! Or you mean the whole "forbidden fruit" angle? Now I"m worried that I"ve ruined him--he's already tasted all this cr*p. He understands the nutrition of it (as much as a 4 y/o can understand), but it's hard when everyone else eats it--it's hard for me as a parent!

ETA so what would you do re: the preschool? Tell them they can't serve him the garbage everyone else eats? It's over this month, so no point in pulling him out. Always bring a snack to tee ball? Maybe I will do that--I can't believe anyone would buy, let alone eat that Froot Foot. And they wanted to give some to my 2 y/o!!!
I did do this! I told them he will bring his own, and he has. Unless it's fresh fruit or veggies he eats his own. we struggled about it for about a week and now he's happier! Plus no more sugar crashes when he gets home. We hav now gone gluten free for him and that made it easier to explain to the teacher and school. He's my kid and I have to be the one to stick up for him.
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#68 of 91 Old 05-07-2010, 11:00 PM
 
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There's an interesting article in this month's Atlantic on obesity and one of the things it mentions as part of our obesity culture is the fact that it's now socially acceptable to eat at any time, which wasn't the case 50+ years ago. I've asked my mom what snacks she ate as a child in the 50's and the question surprised her. She said they ate 3 meals a day and that was it, she didn't remember ever eating a snack at home other than popcorn on a weekend night. Now we eat at school, at church, at work, while shopping--you can stuff your pie hole 24 hours a day and no one will think anything of it until you're a candidate for bariatric surgery. Like grocery carts with a drink holder--you can't grocery shop w/o a soda or coffee!?! I had to explain the cupholder to my 5 y/o the other day--at Bass Pro Shop. And yes, we ate a box of popcorn while we were there!
I'm not sure I totally believe that there was never any snacking in the olden days, though. On old sit coms and in old books, the kids have a snack every day after school. My mother told me that when she was a kid (in the 50s), all of the mothers on the block would get together for coffee and coffee cake every afternoon after their chores were done and the older kids had gone back to school from lunch. They'd move down the street, at one house the first day and the house to the right the next day and so on. And whoever had hosted the day before was in charge of bringing the coffee cake. Personally, having a slice of coffee cake every day sounds like more snacking than I do now!

I definitely agree that there is much more snacking than there used to be. But I think that social occasions have always included snacking. If you read old magazines there are always suggestions for what to serve at your weekly bridge game and so on. In old books, there's always a cake or cookies in the pantry for unexpected guests. Providing food has ALWAYS been a part of hosting any sort of event.

I think the difference is maybe that we do more social events than in days past, especially if you include every youth soccer game as a "social event." That's definitely something that wasn't the case 50 years ago! Maybe the difference is that these kid events weren't seen as social events akin to adults entertaining one another, but one of the signs about the waning existence of childhood in our culture is that we're imposing adult societal norms on children's events.

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#69 of 91 Old 05-07-2010, 11:34 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm not sure I totally believe that there was never any snacking in the olden days, though. On old sit coms and in old books, the kids have a snack every day after school. My mother told me that when she was a kid (in the 50s), all of the mothers on the block would get together for coffee and coffee cake every afternoon after their chores were done and the older kids had gone back to school from lunch. They'd move down the street, at one house the first day and the house to the right the next day and so on. And whoever had hosted the day before was in charge of bringing the coffee cake. Personally, having a slice of coffee cake every day sounds like more snacking than I do now!

I definitely agree that there is much more snacking than there used to be. But I think that social occasions have always included snacking. If you read old magazines there are always suggestions for what to serve at your weekly bridge game and so on. In old books, there's always a cake or cookies in the pantry for unexpected guests. Providing food has ALWAYS been a part of hosting any sort of event.

I think the difference is maybe that we do more social events than in days past, especially if you include every youth soccer game as a "social event." That's definitely something that wasn't the case 50 years ago! Maybe the difference is that these kid events weren't seen as social events akin to adults entertaining one another, but one of the signs about the waning existence of childhood in our culture is that we're imposing adult societal norms on children's events.
True, but snacking/eating is soooo ingrained into our every waking moment now. The whole coffee klatch thing didn't emerge until the suburbs did--and I never noticed June Cleaver partaking; then again, she was a size 2--but even that was a structured activity, not something mindless or spontaneous. And the kids walked home from school, ate and walked back--if only! Now it's drive off campus, load up on trans fats, drive back, and lucky if that's all your teens are doing.

Today we don't need an excuse to eat, social or otherwise. I don't think it was as socially acceptable, even expected, to eat while shopping, while at work, while driving--heck, there weren't drive-throughs or a reason to go to them nightly ie both parents working/over-scheduled children.

I also don't think people are more likely to congregate socially now, far from it--do any of us belong to something like a weekly-meeting bridge group? How many of us do anything regularly socially that isn't kid-related? I know I don't, nor do most of my friends. Who's got the time? Most 50's moms didn't work outside the home and certainly didn't spend their time driving their children hither and yon in search of enriching activities.

And portion size, holy moly. I saw some old movie on TCM and the couple was in the theater eating popcorn--sharing this little itty bitty bag and taking out one kernel at a time to eat. The "children" popcorn you can buy now is 3x larger!

Re: the children's events becoming more like adult events, that is such an interesting observation, but I really see it more as food as a reward, or food as love and attention. A bunch of moms sitting around sharing a snack and coffee is a social event, but a bunch of kids standing around slurping down juice boxes and eating Froot Foot before scattering seems to me more about rewarding them for the game, or implying that the parents love them enough to give them a "treat"--I put it in quotation marks since the treats are so ubiquitous any specialness is destroyed.

I dunno, the point of my ramble is that all this eating has become the new normal and IMO it's a contributing factor as to we're so much fatter than we were 50 yrs ago.
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#70 of 91 Old 05-07-2010, 11:35 PM
 
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About after-game snacks - could you bring watermelon? I have yet to meet a child so jaded it doesn't think watermelon's a treat. It's not just another boring fruit, you know? I'm not a fruit fan myself, but I love it...

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I did do this! I told them he will bring his own, and he has. Unless it's fresh fruit or veggies he eats his own. we struggled about it for about a week and now he's happier! Plus no more sugar crashes when he gets home. We hav now gone gluten free for him and that made it easier to explain to the teacher and school. He's my kid and I have to be the one to stick up for him.
I sent an email yesterday requesting the snack menu so I could provide a healthier alternative on days I disagreed with. Haven't heard back so my battle will continue next week.
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#72 of 91 Old 05-07-2010, 11:41 PM - Thread Starter
 
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About after-game snacks - could you bring watermelon? I have yet to meet a child so jaded it doesn't think watermelon's a treat. It's not just another boring fruit, you know? I'm not a fruit fan myself, but I love it...
That's a GREAT idea! But I've decided I'm going to broach the idea for NO snacks--I mean, give me a break, it's a 50 minute game after lunch and they all have water bottles, surely they can go home and have a snack, right? I'm going to start the vanguard against mindless 24/7 snacking. Or I'll be the mean freak mom, lol.
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#73 of 91 Old 05-08-2010, 01:11 AM
 
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Sorry, poor choice of cut/paste and my words. I didn't mean to offend, sorry if I did. I meant in my own situation. I didn't expect a morning preschool or sports activity to include junk food, so what's my alternative, not attend? That was my sketchy thought process, not a comment on h/s. Maybe I've had too much HFCS.
Could you help the school work on setting up a healthier snack list?

Talk to directors of sports activities about the importance of nutrition for the kids?

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#74 of 91 Old 05-08-2010, 08:23 AM
 
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I think the frequency of snacks is connected to how frantic a lot of people's lives are. There isn't time for three sit down meals each day, so they just grab something and go.

And, honestly...I don't think there's any inherent problem with snacking a lot, and not eating "square" meals. The problem is that so many snacks contain no nutrients and are just full of calories. It's also harder to keep track of how much one is eating, but it can be done.
And all of this is part of the problem. Really, I don't think it's a matter of not having time to sit down to eat three meals a day, it's not making it a priority. When I was an exchange student in Germany, both my host parents worked full-time, my host mom worked more than full time running her own insurance angency and doing all the housework on top of that. Every morning she got up at 5 to start ironing, eat breakfast with my host dad and host brother before they left for the day, and then sit at the table with my host sister and me when we got up because she didn't want us to eat alone! As an American who always ate breakfast alone, I thought this was crazy, but it's a priority for them that you eat meals together, as a family. Other than the three meals a day, snacking was rare: an occasional yogurt here and there and on Sundays we had Coffee and Cake around 3 or 4.
Somehow, I can't help but think a culture that values grabbing a pastry and coffee from Starbucks on the drive to work and then snacking all morning because the pastry didn't give you the nutrients you needed, then a microwaved frozen meal followed by more snacking followed by fast food over eating an actual good meal with family is sick.

And about controlling the amount of calories, well really that's the problem. It's damn near impossible and most people don't bother. Aside from the fact that people chronically underestimate their caloric intake, I tried this in college eating "6 small meals a day" and religiously measured everything I stuck in my mouth to keep with my calorie range to lose weight. It sucked. I never felt satisfied and eating was a burden. I didn't go over because it was so rigid, but it's no wonder most people can't do this.

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#75 of 91 Old 05-08-2010, 08:58 AM
 
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We go to church... juice (Capri Sun) and doughnuts - then candy or chocolates as a reward for good behavior. We go to playgroup at the family resource center.... juice (Capri Sun) and doughnuts. We go to gymnastics - juice boxes at the end. These are all places where I have not control over what is served unless I take a turn serving. But I've basically been asked not to because I provide water and trail mix, dried fruit, homemade fruit roll ups or the like. A lot of these places are adopting policies where only packaged food can be served. That makes it even harder!

We go to basketball - all the concession choices are junk (at least here I feel I can say no).

We stop at grandma's house... junk. We go to Mimi's house (other grandma) MORE junk. HUGE hurt feelings if I don't go along. I've had outright ARGUMENTS with family over the JUNK! It makes no difference. Then my kids view me as the huge bad guy because I said no to the treat grandma wanted to give them.

We go to a birthday party... junk junk junk.

I go to a meeting where childcare is provided.... JUNK!

This leads to 7 days a week of JUNK JUNK JUNK JUNK JUNK JUNK JUNK! I'd say one snack a day is JUNK!

People get REALLY offended when you say no to what they serve.

What's worse it makes me MORE hyper vigilant at home! We can't enjoy a reasonable treat from time to time in our own house because every time we set foot out the door it is JUNK!
I know EXACTLY what you mean. It makes me feel so sad that I feel like *I* can't occasionally offer ds a really fun total junk food item just for a fun treat now and then...but i don't /can't because I feel like grandparetns/kid events/bday parties/ etc. sort of ruin it for us. He gets more "sometimes" foods than I'd like...and even then i don't think the ppl giving them even realize. like they think he hasn't had enough junk or something...it's sooo weird and i hate it and it makes me sad that ppl give their very young children soda and junk food

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#76 of 91 Old 05-08-2010, 11:54 AM
 
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What is Froot Foot? Are you talking about Fruit by the Foot? Either way, it's gross but I was wondering what you were talking about.
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#77 of 91 Old 05-08-2010, 08:32 PM
 
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"What's worse it makes me MORE hyper vigilant at home! We can't enjoy a reasonable treat from time to time in our own house because every time we set foot out the door it is JUNK! "

That drives me nuts too! I feel like I can't buy my own daughter a small valentine candy, or a chocolate easter bunny because she gets SO MUCH JUNK from both sides of our family and every event we attend.

I am thinking about pulling my daughter out of Sunday school because of all the junk they serve there. Donuts in the fellowship hall with something from a powder mix to drink, and then cookies or candy during sunday school.
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#78 of 91 Old 05-08-2010, 11:58 PM
 
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I'd consider the snacks your ds's preschool serves to be a breach of contract. They promised "healthy snacks" when you agreed to pay his tuition there, they need to do that or give you a refund.

As for sports snacks, what I'm used to seeing for adults who are doing sports all day (okay, 8-12, lunch then more casually 1-4) is orange wedges, pickles, pretzels, and water. And the lunch is usually protein heavy, both the offered lunch and the lunches people pack for themselves.

Honestly, if the kids aren't running around enough to crave salts and water, they aren't running around enough. Craving sugars after physical activity means you aren't moving enough.
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#79 of 91 Old 05-09-2010, 12:03 AM
 
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And all of this is part of the problem. Really, I don't think it's a matter of not having time to sit down to eat three meals a day, it's not making it a priority. When I was an exchange student in Germany, both my host parents worked full-time, my host mom worked more than full time running her own insurance angency and doing all the housework on top of that. Every morning she got up at 5 to start ironing, eat breakfast with my host dad and host brother before they left for the day, and then sit at the table with my host sister and me when we got up because she didn't want us to eat alone! As an American who always ate breakfast alone, I thought this was crazy, but it's a priority for them that you eat meals together, as a family. Other than the three meals a day, snacking was rare: an occasional yogurt here and there and on Sundays we had Coffee and Cake around 3 or 4.
Somehow, I can't help but think a culture that values grabbing a pastry and coffee from Starbucks on the drive to work and then snacking all morning because the pastry didn't give you the nutrients you needed, then a microwaved frozen meal followed by more snacking followed by fast food over eating an actual good meal with family is sick.
Well, when I was eating all the time, I didn't have time to eat. If I'd gotten up at 5 am to make breakfast, etc., then I'd have been down on even more sleep. Right now, ds2 has to be at preschool at 12:30, and one day a week, we go straight from there to dd1's ballet. That means we have breakfast, have an early lunch (have to be finished by about noon to be out the door on time), then get home no earlier than 4:45, to start making dinner. Yes - I could reschedule dd1's ballet, or ds2's dance class...but the available times would all push dinner back. I really don't think a meal at 8:00, another meal at 11:30 and then dinner at 6:30 or 7:00 makes a lot of sense, yk? My kids need a snack in there somewhere.

The culture is sick, but there's space between grabbing a pastry and coffee from Starbucks and sitting down to eat an actual meal with your family. I don't have sit down breakfasts (and have never been able to stomach big meals first thing in the morning, in any case), but I eat a couple of hardboiled eggs, and some fruit and/or yogurt...not a pastry.

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And about controlling the amount of calories, well really that's the problem. It's damn near impossible and most people don't bother. Aside from the fact that people chronically underestimate their caloric intake, I tried this in college eating "6 small meals a day" and religiously measured everything I stuck in my mouth to keep with my calorie range to lose weight. It sucked. I never felt satisfied and eating was a burden. I didn't go over because it was so rigid, but it's no wonder most people can't do this.
Where have you heard that most people can't do this? I know several people who do very well on weight management through six small meals or all day "grazing" eating patterns. They don't track calories or measure...they're just aware of what they put in their mouths. It's not like "6 dates at 10:30, a cracker at 11:10, half a cup of yogurt at noon" - more like "I had those dates, and a cracker...maybe I'll have some yogurt now". Where I think people run into trouble is when they completely forget about the dates and the cracker, and think the yogurt is all they've eaten in three hours.

I'm interested in the talk about the 50s. My mom grew up in the 50s, and while she's never suggested food was everywhere, she certainly snacked. I always had an afterschool snack every day, as did most of my friends, in the early 70s.

There is a lot more snacking going on these days, but I still think the bigger problem is the quality of the snacks. IMO, there's a big difference between some oranges with water to drink (standard snack at my nephew's soccer games), and Fruit by the Foot with Capri Sun or pop, yk?

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#80 of 91 Old 05-09-2010, 12:59 AM
 
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I remember having orange slices and water for snack at soccer games. I remember a friend crying to her dad that she wanted soda in her water bottle and dad was adamant that she have water in her WATER bottle. I still think about this all the time.
I wish fruit lasted long enough for me to take it outside with us. The kids gobble it up at an alarming rate.

However we went to a farm this morning and got about 20 lbs of oranges so at least we will have those for a while- they might even last a whole week if I'm lucky.
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#81 of 91 Old 05-09-2010, 06:25 PM
 
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Wow. Just read through this thread. Like the OP my DD has occasional junk food but it's rare. One variable that has not been brought up yet (unless I missed it, apologies if I did) is the effect of TV. My DD does not watch cartoons on TV. She does watch some Vids/DVDs but not commercial TV. When we had the blizzards in Feb I allowed her to watch cartoons on Saturday morning and was AMAZED and HORRIFIED by the number of junk food commercials. Junk food is pushed nonstop on TV to children and adults. Some of the jingles say it all -- being FULL, big is good, "mansized" meals. If you watch lots of TV then you will be flooded with thousands of ads for junk food.

My DD really does not know about lots of the junk food and or sugared cereals and, so far, she has not asked for it. She's still asking for fruit when we go out. I'll try and keep that going for as long as possible...
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#82 of 91 Old 05-09-2010, 06:57 PM
 
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There is a lot more snacking going on these days, but I still think the bigger problem is the quality of the snacks. IMO, there's a big difference between some oranges with water to drink (standard snack at my nephew's soccer games), and Fruit by the Foot with Capri Sun or pop, yk?
I agree with this. I truly believe it is not about the frequency or system by which you put food into your body, but the type of foods you consume. We're 100% grazers here. We don't have the traditional three meals in our family, even though DH and I both grew up that way. We eat when we're hungry and we usually eat raw vegetables, fruits, nuts and something with protein. I can't remember the last time we had a traditional meal in our family. We're all very thin and we always have been. Now, if our grazing included McDonald's fries and potato chips or some other food that qualifies as junk, I can guarantee that we'd have issues. I sort of shrug when people attack "snacking" but like the PP said, the bigger problem is the quality of the food. I think that the whole square three meals a day idea was based on an agricultural model - people needed a big breakfast in the morning so that they could work in the fields all day, and would come home famished. Plus, cooking from scratch required a good deal of time and people did not have access to "convenience" foods that we have now - even stuff like crackers. If you reach back in time when people foraged for their food, I imagine that they ate when they could find food and ate all day long if food was in abundance. Now, people can sit down and eat one danish and possibly consume half or more the calories they need in one day before 9 am. For me, the problem is over-consumption of useless calories, not snacking. I'm not attacking the three-square-meals-a-day philosophy, but I think its unfair to blame the frequency of eating rather than what is actually being eaten.

"Lawyers, I suppose, were children once." Charles Lamb.
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#83 of 91 Old 05-09-2010, 09:04 PM
 
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I agree with this. I truly believe it is not about the frequency or system by which you put food into your body, but the type of foods you consume. We're 100% grazers here. We don't have the traditional three meals in our family, even though DH and I both grew up that way. We eat when we're hungry and we usually eat raw vegetables, fruits, nuts and something with protein. I can't remember the last time we had a traditional meal in our family. We're all very thin and we always have been. Now, if our grazing included McDonald's fries and potato chips or some other food that qualifies as junk, I can guarantee that we'd have issues. I sort of shrug when people attack "snacking" but like the PP said, the bigger problem is the quality of the food. I think that the whole square three meals a day idea was based on an agricultural model - people needed a big breakfast in the morning so that they could work in the fields all day, and would come home famished. Plus, cooking from scratch required a good deal of time and people did not have access to "convenience" foods that we have now - even stuff like crackers. If you reach back in time when people foraged for their food, I imagine that they ate when they could find food and ate all day long if food was in abundance. Now, people can sit down and eat one danish and possibly consume half or more the calories they need in one day before 9 am. For me, the problem is over-consumption of useless calories, not snacking. I'm not attacking the three-square-meals-a-day philosophy, but I think its unfair to blame the frequency of eating rather than what is actually being eaten.
Even though we are a 3 squares family, I agree with everything you are saying here.

Trying to live a simple life in a messy house in a complicated world with : DH, DD (b. 07/07), DS (b. 02/09), and DD (b. 10/10)
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#84 of 91 Old 05-09-2010, 11:35 PM
 
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This discussion seems so bizarre to me.

If you browse the various forums on this board and someone posts about how their 1/2/3/10yo is having meltdowns, the first suggestion is to make sure the kid has more snacks. "Is he hungry?" people ask. I've seen suggestions to have snacks waiting in the car when picking kids up from school so they can eat on the drive home.

And yet, when the "mainstream" world want to have snack available, that's suddenly a "bad" thing?

I run an inhome daycare. We eat every 1.5 to 2 hours. Otherwise the kids go crazy. Breakfast at 8am, snack at 9:30/10am, lunch at 11:30/12. Then snack after naps at 3:30 and some crackers while waiting for parents at 5.

I also remember from the first year I played soccer as a 4yo that we had oranges at half time. Every soccer game I played as a kid had that sugar pick me up half way through. There were schedules sent home saying which game which family had to bring oranges to.

I also ski raced, and our team had the "hot chocolate mom" who's job it was to take the team thermos thing and bring hot chocolate to all the meets so we didn't all have to buy it. That was offered once in the morning and once in the afternoon (and we were expected to eat breakfast at home, buy/pack a lunch and then go home for supper).

If the problem is the quality of the snacks, then make that the issue. I think it's ridiculous to dump all over the idea of snacking.
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#85 of 91 Old 05-10-2010, 01:46 AM
 
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I agree with the "It's not snacking, it's *what* the snack is"...AND somewhat with the "what's up with the *constant* snacking anyway?"

I can see the snack and lunch *both* provided at my son's preschool, even though he is only there from 9-12:15. It's integrated with HeadStart. There might be children in his class who literally do not have food to eat for breakfast before they come to school. So there's the snack when they come in. And there's lunch before they go. (also some kids ride the bus for an hour, and some come from daycare--their last meal could've been a couple hours before school at that rate and probably a quick piece of toast and fruit or something...if it wasn't processed, packaged, grabbable junk.)

I also get after-school programs serving a snack--it's been a good 3 hours since lunch by the time they get there, and 2-3 before they will go home, where someone will have to cook the dinner, if they don't go through the drive-through.

BUT. Here is the but. My son's school doesn't do this...but some of you are saying your schools do. The thing is, if you are seriously serving a snack because you think the kids do not get to eat before they come, serve FOOD. Serve a mini-meal. Do *not* serve a donut/cookie/processed sweet snack, and juice.
My son's class has cereal and milk on Mondays. (low-sugar, non-colored) One other day a week is *usually* veggies with dip and some sort of cracker. (this to me needs a protien, but PB is out, and I think cheese is out due to fat b/c of the ranch dip, according to their rules) Other snacks include a muffin or baked bar (not pre-packaged) and fruit, a cheese stick with crackers, cheese sandwich, graham cracker and fruit...mostly some decent stuff. (other than the pre-mentioned lack of protein sometimes, but they have milk with their snacks quite a bit, so there's at least some there.)

One of my kids' fav. snacks is cheese and crackers and fruit. Easy, and I don't know too many kids who would *not* eat that....that is what I think *most* after-school snacks should look like. Some sort of protein, fruit/and or veggie, treats occasionally.


I agree too with the "what's up with the CONSTANT snacks?" I can see it for a soccer game, the oranges and water. Lots of fluids. But junk juice and junk snacks? NO! just seems to send the wrong message about health with the activity.
And it shouldn't be a family financial cost thing....it's *got* to be cheaper, or equal to provide a big bag of oranges, sliced, and water. Even if you buy ind. bottles!

I don't think *everything* needs a snack...we didn't do this when I was a kid either---the vacation bible school thing I went to had a snack, but it was 3-4 hours long. A 2 hour meeting involving kids occuring after lunch should not need a snack unless it is something like Girl scouts getting a cooking badge, or somebody brings a treat because it's their b-day or whatever.

I don't think kids need to *expect* to be fed whereever they go...I think it teaches somewhat that it's OK to not eat what's served because you'll get something better in an hour or so...
AND I think it contributes to obesity...because....like a PP said, you don't hand a hungry kid a fruit-roll-up. (or some candy fruit snacks, or whatever) It will not fill them up. It will give them extra sugar, and an extra bunch of calories. (and in the end, they will probably eat more calories overall than if they'd just gone home for lunch without it)

While we are on the subject of snacks and food....most of this processed junk too requires little effort to eat it, chewing, etc. I think that too might be part of the obesity epidemic....I read somewhere that foods that require more chewing--think even a steak, not just salads or raw fruits and veggies, the chewing actually adds to our sense of how full we are....and we're satisfied sooner.
So...by this theory, people will eat more of the foods that require less chewing, and they also tend to pack more calories....which of course make us fatter.
Score another point for fruit slices and veggie sticks over Twinkies....

lovin DH since 1/04, best mom for my 3 boys 10/04, 11/08, 11/10 one girlie (1/07), one 13 wk (10/13) and 5/15 just your average multigenerational living family!!
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#86 of 91 Old 05-10-2010, 02:28 AM
 
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Sorry, I didn´t have the time to read the whole discussion, just my thoughts here:
I actually made them change the food they serve at childcare. I went to the parents meeting (and - yeah was a little stared at - having a sling and kids in organic cotton and stuff) - but we discussed food, and I asked about chemicals in there and they were like: Everybody eats ready-made-meals and the stuff is in there as well - I answered: Actually no, we don´t. And my kids shouldn´t have to.
And they actually started to think about it. A couple of month later, (me being the head of the parents group by then ) the offered a different provider for the food. It´s not all organic yet, but it´s all regional, fresh food, freshly cooked, no preservatives, no food colours, no other nasty stuff. And the kids actually like it!
One of the caregivers actually congratulated us for bring the best snack box ever for our kids, I try to put fancy food in there, like fancy cut up stuff, apple "crowns" and star carrots and stuff, cut out sandwiches and no sweets. except dry food and stuff.

At the moment it works _

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I am not regularly online at the moment due to the above ...
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#87 of 91 Old 05-10-2010, 07:26 AM
 
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This is one of our reasons why we left the US. Complete lack of common sense on teeh part of adults when it comes to food. Here is not perfect but I don't worry about what dd1 eats in preschool (because I wouldlove to eat what she gets-a 3 course meal everyday!). I feel like you, the occasional treat at a special occasion like a birthday party etc., is fine. But pastries, cakes, cookies, 4 days a weeks is not okay. I bring healthy snacks that can at least compete with the others. For instance dd loves choc flavored yogurt, nuts, granola bars for her are like cookies, etc. It works better than fruit when your up against doughnuts. Or I make a deal like you can have half that cookie and half your yoghurt or something similar. We have also started to discuss what teh different foods do to your body. She is still young for it but I feel its better to lay the ground work now.

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#88 of 91 Old 05-10-2010, 07:31 AM
 
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Wow. Just read through this thread. Like the OP my DD has occasional junk food but it's rare. One variable that has not been brought up yet (unless I missed it, apologies if I did) is the effect of TV. My DD does not watch cartoons on TV. She does watch some Vids/DVDs but not commercial TV. When we had the blizzards in Feb I allowed her to watch cartoons on Saturday morning and was AMAZED and HORRIFIED by the number of junk food commercials. Junk food is pushed nonstop on TV to children and adults. Some of the jingles say it all -- being FULL, big is good, "mansized" meals. If you watch lots of TV then you will be flooded with thousands of ads for junk food.

My DD really does not know about lots of the junk food and or sugared cereals and, so far, she has not asked for it. She's still asking for fruit when we go out. I'll try and keep that going for as long as possible...
This is extrememly true. Both I and my French teacher as well as some others in my class have found this to be true. So important to be aware of commercials and their effects.

Mamma to dd1 3/8/07, one 9.5.08, and dd2 9/9/09
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#89 of 91 Old 05-10-2010, 01:22 PM
 
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when I was eating all the time, I didn't have time to eat. If I'd gotten up at 5 am to make breakfast, etc., then I'd have been down on even more sleep.
Please, don't think I was talking specifically about you, I don't know you and didn't mean you or anyone specifically.. There's no way I can peer into your house and know your family's habits or how well they do or do not work for you. What I can see are the habits of the people I know: my family, my friends, in the US and abroad. And what I see is that Americans all snack more than the Germans I know, the Ukrainians I know and the Finns I know, who tend to eat more square meals. To make matters worse, the vast majority of snacking involves junk food: overly processed crap.

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Where have you heard that most people can't do this? I know several people who do very well on weight management through six small meals or all day "grazing" eating patterns.
Anecdotal evidence is anecdotal. I also know a few people who do graze all day without being overweight, but they are the exceptions rather than the rule. Read this: Why Are Americans So Obese?
The pertinent points are that 90 percent of the increase in calorie consumption in men in the United States since 1977 has come from between-meal eating. For women, it's 112 percent and that calories from meals have actually gone down. Additionally, "The average number of snacks increased by 60% over this period, thus more snacks per day -- rather than more calories per snack -- account for the majority of the increase in the calories from snacks."
In otherwords, permasnacking!
Sure, studies have been done that show that people who eat 6 small meals a day have a faster metabolism and lose more weight than people who don't, but this is under controlled laboratory conditions. None of us actually live in laboratories and those of us who are grazers and not overweight can happily pat themselves on the back because the are exceptions to the rule.

Now regarding other countries: Snacking and Obesity in China
And a very interesting article regarding the US:
OUr National Eating Disorder

Mother to one (8/08) with another on the way (04/11)
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#90 of 91 Old 05-10-2010, 01:36 PM
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Wow, we just haven't run into this. Maybe because we live in Ann Arbor?
My 4 yr. old has a snack at preschool, and all the parents take turns bringing it. Today he had Annie's cheddar bunnies and strawberries. Yes, cheddar bunnies are glorified goldfish crackers, but I don't object to them. I know the snack one day last week was pretzels and pears. Usually it's popcorn/crackers/pretzels and some sort of fruit. If it's a birthday, it's cupcakes and some sort of fruit. Otherwise he eats at home, and I let him have moderate amounts of cake/juice/candy when it comes up at parties and holidays.
My 7 yr. old eats school lunch every day and while it isn't the healthiest, it's not terrible. Today they are having turkey hot dogs, baked beans, and apples. They offer a selection of milk but I don't allow him to get chocolate or strawberry. He gets water instead. He mostly does sports through the Y which doesn't do the snacks. When he's played on school teams that have snack, I usually just try to set a good example by bringing healthy snacks and water. However, even the least healthy snack has been cheez-its and 100% juice, which is okay once a week IMO.
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