Faced with a child who says NO to everything on offer reverting to sweet tasting food is very tempting. But why does it work? Our tastebuds & brains react to them as pleasing.
Reading packet ingredients is a Nan job. It’s is a tough discipline. Requires a critical eye. Knowing that there are 50 aliases for what our bodies think is sugar helps. The word sugar is not the whole story. Just as the word fat as an ingredient is not what necessarily makes us fat. Confused or what? As to understanding calorie content it takes GCSE maths to work it out.
Sugar free/low future
Nan temptation is to say ‘oh but he likes it so much’…when it comes to sweets, cakes and biscuits….of course he does. He is meant to like them. But he does not need them. Ultimately more than an occasional treat and it will make him less and less healthy.
I am sorry to say that picking up my wee ones from nursery or school has often been met with ‘ I got given a sweet today’ . A question about lunch and the answer often focuses on the sweet yoghurt or the sugared burger bun. There was even a ‘lollipop week’ in reception.
At the same time the school had a static presentation on the hall wall about diet with sugar included as a concern. Mixed messages or what?!!
When I was asked to help with some Maths homework I was horrified to see that measuring and weighing was to be learnt through making sugary biscuits covered in sugary icing.
‘No hope ‘ was my feeling but I shall keep on cooking the fun stuff with colour, shape and texture that will win the battle with sugar. And encourage running round the garden , scooting down the street like a demon to burn burn burn the otherwise excess the boys have been given.
The good news is that it is less of an issue if you set the rules early. Do not underestimate the challenge..it is long long long. Even after many conversations Kevin still calls every while powder he sees ‘ sugar’!
- Read the tins and packets and wait to be astonished.
- For the very keen list out how much sugar you eat in a day too
- The long game is to never introduce or reduce the addiction to sweetness.
- Think twice about adding sugar in any form to foods like natural yoghurt
- Limit sugar to forms it is easy to recognise, like sweets
- Make a very small number of sweets a weekly (not daily) treat
- Don’t require a child to finish any sweets, biscuits, snack bars, cakes or other sugary foods
- Encourage well meaning folk to think beyond the milk chocolate eggs when it comes to festive occasions
- Reduce the amount of sugar you add to cakes when you home bake.