When I became a mother, it totally changed the way I looked at food. I started to do a ton of research into healthy eating and healthy living because, like most mothers, I didn’t want my daughter to be exposed to toxic foods and environments. Unfortunately, our kids will always be exposed to certain toxins in our environment that we cannot control but we can control the things that go into their food.
In my personal opinion, it is totally acceptable to sneak healthy foods into some of the foods that your kids already love. I have found four healthy foods that I mix into our meals every single day. The great thing about them is that you can barely taste they’re there and they have a ton of health benefits.
- Chia Seeds. I love chia seeds because they have no taste at all but the benefits are enormous. They have a high concentration of omega -3’s, protein, iron, calcium, magnesium, and protein. When chia seeds get into contact with any type of liquid, they form a gel-like barrier around the seed. This helps slow digestion which keeps you feel full longer. It also makes for some easy chia pudding ;).
- Ground flax seed. These are actually very similar in health benefits to chia seeds. The reason I like them and also add them to so many dishes is that they are just a little easier to hide in foods, especially if you have kids who are very picky about texture. These are very finely ground so they do not give the same crunch as chia seeds, but have relatively the same benefits as well as being easier on the wallet.
- Raw Hemp seeds. These are one of my favorites that I have discovered, especially because my daughter loves to eat a handful right out of the bag! They are nutty and slightly crunchy and taste similar to sunflower seeds. They pack a ton of protein which is especially good if you are a family who does not eat a lot of animal protein, like us. In fact, they are one of the best sources of vegetable protein. They also contain essential amino acids as well as Vitamin A, B, D, and E.
- Unsweetened coconut flakes. Coconut is definitely one of my favorite foods. The health benefits are numerous and each part of the coconut can be used for so many different things. I really like using coconut flakes for more sweet meals like oatmeal and cereals. It adds a tiny bit of coconut flavor without being too noticeable. The coconut flakes don’t add as much concentrated nutrition as the others but it is definitely one of my favorites for the flavor it adds and is a great source of heathy fat.
There are so many other great things you can use but these are four of my go-to items. I love to to mix them in my daugher’s oatmeal in the morning as well as in her green smoothies. You can sprinkle them in your kids’ cereals, pastas, smoothies, and even in sandwiches. A little bit goes a long way so get creative!