There are so many ways to make small changes that can really boost your family’s nutrition. I’m with you if you cringed at that thought. Years ago, when all the coupons started coming out with healthy alternatives, my family acted like I was pulling their teeth to get them to eat whole wheat bread, and whole wheat pasta. They’re over it now, and all is well. And I would encourage you that it’s worth going through it!
I read a thread on our message board that sparked some good ideas for improving the family’s nutrition. So I made a list of some easy changes that can really improve the health and nutrition for your family, without making your wallet or your family’s taste buds scream:
1. Puree extra veggies into sauces, soups, chili, casseroles, etc. They won’t dislike it, if they don’t know it’s there!
2. Make more dried bean meals, or add beans to meat meals. They’re loaded with fiber, complex carbs, and protein. My husband doesn’t like beans in chili. But if I mash them, it thickens the chili, and he doesn’t realize the beans are there. Get creative!
3. Switch to whole grain bread. Don’t give in to your family’s complaints, if they’re addicted to white bread. Trust me. If that’s all they get, they’ll learn to love it. I went through it for over a year, but no more complaints. And it was worth it. BTW – There’s tons of coupons for these things, so you don’t have to blow your budget to have healthier alternatives.
4. Cut down on HFCS, high fructose corn syrup – Read the labels. There are MANY more options now without it, on the same shelf in your supermarket. And they taste just as good.
5. Serve the salad before the meal. This works for my husband, who will pick at a salad, unless if it’s all there is.
6. Cut out sodas at home. Or, if you like to have them for special occasions, and they’re on sale, buy them, and hide them, and dole them out when the time is right.
7. Choose the “low sugar”, “low fat”, “low sodium”, “high fiber” options. Nearly every food line now has those options for things like cereal, soup, bread, yogurt, etc.
8. Use “good on any” coupons on organic – Nearly every major food manufacturer has organic in their lines now. Use “good on any” coupons to buy the organic in the manufacturer’s line of foods. For example, a “good on any Brand X” coupon can be used on their organic Brand X products. Organic will never have HFCS, among other things.
Here’s a link to the message board thread with more good ideas: