Here at USA Ninja Challenge, our passion is our ninjas and giving kids a place to be active as we are inundated with sedentary elements in our lives especially electronic devices. Our goal is to teach our kids how to stay active, but that’s only half of the equation. Eating is the other half, and undeniably probably the most important!
We sometimes forget that food is the fuel for our bodies, and we tend to eat for enjoyment meaning that we like things that taste good but may not have good nutritional value.
This is especially true for kids who tend to have a less refined palate and tend to eat things that are sweet or bland in flavor (think chicken nuggets and sweets etc.). Also, kids tend to like to eat more processed foods which are nutritionally vacant.
More and more kids are getting less activity, on top of a lack of nutrition in their diets, because of this we are seeing and alarming rise in childhood obesity.
Childhood obesity is a huge problem in the US. According to the CDC, Obesity prevalence was12.7% among 2- to 5-year-olds, 20.7% among 6- to 11-year-olds, and 22.2% among12- to 19-year-olds.
So how do we help our kids?
Kids can be picky eaters, but as parents we can help! Mostly by keeping a variety of foods in our house and less packaged / boxed foods.
Here are some other helpful hints and tips to keep kids to keep your ninjas healthy and happy!
· The more veggies – and the greater the variety –the better.
· Potatoes and French fries don’t count as vegetables because of their negative impact on blood sugar.
· Eat plenty of fruits of all colors.
· Choose whole fruits or sliced fruits (rather than fruit juices; limit fruit juice to one small glass per day).
· Go for whole grains or foods made with minimally processed whole grains. The less processed the grains, the better.
· Whole grains—whole wheat, brown rice, quinoa, and foods made with them, such as whole-grain pasta and 100% whole-wheat bread have a gentler effect on blood sugar and insulin than white rice, bread ,pizza crust, pasta, and other refined grains.
· Choose beans and peas, nuts, seeds, and other plant-based healthy protein options, as well as fish, eggs, and poultry.
· Limit red meat (beef, pork, lamb) and avoid processed meats (bacon, deli meats, hot dogs, sausages).
· Use healthy oils from plants like extra virgin olive, canola, corn, sunflower, and peanut oil in cooking, on salads and vegetables, and at the table.
Getting our kids the right food translates into happier kids and overall a more enjoyable childhood! They will be better students and athletes!
Help us keep our Ninjas healthy by helping them eat healthier snacks and meals! Also, if you need a new activity for your child, come check out our ninja classes! A great way to stay active!!