The first month is so important because it may be the first introduction your family will have to healthy eating. It needs to be a delicious introduction!
- The very first thing that has to go is milk. It is the most mucus-forming substance in the world. This will save you on Kleenex and save your children from countless colds and flues. They will not mind the subtraction of milk if it is replaced with refreshing fruit juices. If they are old enough, teach them how to use the juice machine so that they are able to make their own juices on demand. Even frozen concentrated juices are far better for you than milk. Look for our nut milks in the nut section of this book. You can also purchase soy or rice milk from your health food store which can be used for drinking or baking. Banana milk shakes are excellent for replacing milk.
At one time, people would be horrified at the thought of removing milk from a child’s diet, but, recently, there has been a substantial amount of information on the destructive effect that milk has on health.
- We can live without deep-fried foods. French fries are a family favorite. We have a recipe to make delicious almost fat-free french fries and potato chips. Your kids will love them and they will barely be able to tell the difference. If you want to sauté and lightly brown food, we suggest you use just enough butter to prevent food from sticking.
- Bread is a big part of most of our diets. Change to whole grain, fresh, high-quality bread. When looking at the ingredients, check for the addition of preservatives, additives, gluten and oils. These are undesirable and unnecessary for good taste.
- Get rid of brown and white sugar. It is absolute, man-made garbage. There are natural sweeteners that taste better and are far healthier. Change to unpasteurized honey, Sucanat, frozen juice concentrates, fructose and molasses.
- Replace margarine with butter. Use half the butter you would normally apply on potatoes, vegetables, popcorn, bread, etc.
- Go natural! One example is peanut butter. Your health food store will have freshly-ground peanuts without the addition of fat, sugar and salt. For the first month, you can add a sprinkle of sea salt and honey to your natural peanut butter to ease the change in flavor.
If you are a pasta lover, switch to whole grain pastas. Other than a slight difference in texture, the flavor is the same. Get into the habit of reading the ingredients before purchasing prepared foods. For instance, some spaghetti sauces are loaded with oil, sugar and preservatives, whereas, others will have natural ingredients.
- Introduce more fresh fruit into your diet. To encourage this, keep a fruit bowl filled with fresh, washed, ready-to-eat fruit in the middle of the kitchen table. You will find that your children will naturally snack on these quick nutritious foods, especially if the cookie jar is empty. Twice a week, determine to have a fruit breakfast.
- Make a fresh glass of vegetable juice for the family each day. A great starter for kids that is regularly accepted is carrot and apple. As they become accustomed to this natural flavor, you may begin to add some greens. Kids love to push the carrots through the juicer. Carrots in one hole, juice out the other. If you involve your children in these changes, they will be more receptive, feeling a part of the exciting discovery process.
- Split your coffee, tea and pop consumption in half. This one is going to hurt because caffeine is a drug that has tampered with your natural chemistry. Discover the soothing flavors of herbal teas. Decaffeinated coffee is useful only for transition and should not be a permanent coffee replacer.
- Desserts and treats. This is a tough one. Kids love treats and so do we. The food industry is expert in making colorful creative, sweet, delicacies that appeal to children. So we have a challenge. Let’s be creative, making our own treats that are equally fun but nutritious and healthy. We have some great suggestions in our recipe section.
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