Healthy Family Meals: Feed Your Family and Stay On Track
In order for any lifestyle change to be sustainable long-term, it must be simple to integrate into your life and more importantly, your family life. Although The Fast 800 is not suitable for children under any circumstances, you can make healthy family meals allowing your children to thrive off Mediterranean-style food with added complex carbohydrates, giving them long-lasting energy throughout the day.
With the rise of childhood obesity, instilling good eating habits and healthy relationships with food from an early age is now critical. Although we stand firm that The Very Fast 800 and fasting is not suitable for children, you can take the following steps to educate the family on healthy lifestyles.
- Eat together, at the dinner table, as a family each evening – Not only will it give you more time together as a family, it may encourage your children to make healthier choices.
- Get children involved in cooking – When children are given responsibility for their food, they are more likely to be less fussy and eat a wide variety of vegetables.
- Get active – involve your family in your daily exercise routine or adapt your routine to fit in with them. Go to the park for a run around, walk the dog as a family or for older children, sign up to an appropriate fitness class together.
- Eat a variety of colours – incorporating colourful vegetables into your healthy family meals is not only fun but it will add a variety of nutrients to your family’s diet.
- Don’t be fussy! Children are a reflection of the people they are surrounded by. If you are open to all varieties of healthy and nutritional food without making a fuss, they will be more open too!
- No skipping breakfast – children need breakfast for energy throughout the day and to help improve alertness, concentration and mental performance. Ensure your children eat a quality breakfast, with healthy fats, complex carbs and protein. Just watch out for any added sugar in “healthy” cereal options which can be easily swapped out for a nourishing bowl of porridge.
Healthy family meals to keep you on track
Eating healthy and eating well are not mutually exclusive. The Fast 800 embraces healthy fats and protein to help keep you fuller for longer and satisfied with every delicious recipe, ensuring that food is both nutritious and delicious. So many people fall off the wagon when it comes to cooking for their family with the temptation of a leftover sandwich or an odd bite of cake or a crisp or two from their packet. Even the smallest bite can raise blood sugars and bring on cravings.
There really isn’t any need for you to eat separately from your family; you can cook multiple portions of your meal and simply add complex carbohydrates to their plates, making this way of life simple and sustainable. There’s certainly no need to cook a variety of meals each night!
The Fast 800 Online Programme has meal plans all mapped out for you with a reflective shopping list that adjusts according to your preferences; from the nutritionist-developed meal plans, you are able to swap in alternative meals if there’s one you’d like to change, you can also increase serving sizes to cook for as many people as you need.
While adults can follow a relatively low-carb diet, children need carbohydrates for sustained energy and brain power. Although added sugars and simple carbohydrates are recommended as occasional treats by governing bodies, complex carbohydrates are important for growth and development.
Adding more for kids
When cooking for children, or adults who aren’t following The Fast 800, here are some complex carbohydrates you can add to their plates alongside healthy fats, protein and fibre:
- Whole wheat pasta
- Brown or darker coloured rice
- Whole grain pita/bread
- Potatoes and Sweet Potatoes/Kumara
- Legumes and beans
- Quinoa and whole grains
*portion recommendations vary depending on the age of the child, appetite, activity levels and so on. For best advice, we recommend you look at trusted, and regularly updated, nutrition sites or speak to your usual healthcare professional if you’re concerned that your child is eating too little or too much.
The take home message is that a healthy lifestyle shouldn’t limit your ability to eat as a family, or have you making several different meals. You can still follow The Fast 800 and feel confident that you’re putting healthy family meals on the table each night by providing a balanced plate of protein, healthy fats, fibre and complex carbohydrates.
Our articles are written as general information only. The Fast 800 is not suitable for those under the age of 18; if you are concerned that your child/children may be overweight or obese, please speak to your usual healthcare professional for further advice and support.