Creating a Healthy Home
IFBB pro Sandi Forsythe shares five simple changes you can make to ensure your family is on the right track to leading a healthy, active life
With childhood obesity, and obesity in adults climbing it’s important to look at the environment we are creating as Mom’s in our home. Whether you’re a stay-at-home mom or working women it is still possible to create a healthy home and active environment for your family. With some simple “home makeovers” you can make your own home a healthier environment today! Let’s look at some simple changes that can be made to ensure your family is on the right track to leading a healthy, active life.
1. Purging the pantry. Let’s start in the kitchen: take a look at what’s in your pantry, fridge, and freezer. If the foods you see are processed, high sugar, premade foods chances are they are NOT helping to create the healthy environment we all desire for our children and us. Now is the time get the trash bag and begin purging your pantry; rid your fridge and freezer of pre-packaged foods and processed snacks that are often hindering your family’s healthy goals.
2. Find healthy alternatives. By taking some time in the store you can search and find several healthy alternative snack and meal ideas that are kid approved. Keep an eye out on the Muscle and Fitness Hers facebook page for healthy snack and meal options, or follow me on my Facebook page here for more ideas. Trading out your Oreo cookies for whole wheat pita chips and hummus or your late night ice cream treat for a bowl of Greek yogurt will not only help you with your weight loss goals but will also establish healthy habits for the whole family.
3. Get active as a family. Create an activity chart for you and your kids, this chart will log the time your children spend playing outside at the park, in the yard, or on bikes. Make the chart fun for your children to help instill healthy habits and participation.
4. Get busy in the kitchen. Include your children in meal preparation. Let your kids take part in making meals and identifying what “healthy” looks like. When children participate in the process of healthy cooking, and shopping they learn what healthy looks like and are able to take those habits with them through life.
5. Don’t eliminate, instead teach moderation. I know so many moms that NEVER let their children have a “treat.” I don’t believe in restricting my kids from treats all together but it’s about moderation. Treats are just that- A treat and should be special. I never use food or “treats” as a reward or punishment. Food is necessary for life so using it as a reward or punishment can establish an unhealthy relationship with food for kids. And just as for kids, we as adults must remember food is not a reward or punishment but rather fuel for our bodies. When we can learn this, we are able to set healthy habits for our children.
By assessing the current habits of the family and establishing some new ones we can change the environment in our homes. Our children need to see what “healthy looks like, and feels like”. The only way children learn this is by watching and participating in the habits within the environment of the home. Helping our children establish a healthy relationship with food will help them as they grow and are able to make their own decisions.