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May 13, 2015


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I have always had a complex (and not very healthy) relationship to food. My one rule when I was raising my daughter was the I was not going to restrict. We were going to talk about balance and nutrition, but I was not going to do a lot of policing. We have a cupboard with lots of treats. She has access to that cupboard, and I rarely said no if she asked for something. I did sometimes ask her to include something healthy in the same snack.

I am so glad I did this --she is good at balancing her meals and snacks, but much more importantly, she never feels like she has to eat all of something, or sneak anything, or binge on anything. Basically, she knows that the treats will always be there, so she feels no need to gobble them all up in one sitting. She eats when she's hungry and stops when she's full. She doesn't see food as any kind of reward, just as an pleasant way to maintain her energy.

I realize that part of this may be her personality, but I'm so happy to see her with a healthy relationship to food --I think it will serve her well over her life.


I can speak for outdoor time, even in frigid climates. If you have outdoor activities and know how to dress, kids can move their bodies outside, year-round, even if it's -40. Seriously.

Also, if "treats" are used as rewards, then they hold all the power. Neutralize their power by making a cookie or bowl of ice cream something a kid can have once a day (or whatever the rule is for you), and it doesn't matter at what time or after what else is eaten. We can trust kids' natural impulses with food, so instead of wrecking those impulses by making some foods The Power Foods, simply promote moderation in all things.

Heather W

Thank you for this lovely reminder.

Gary Rith

Ohhhhhhhh...the mother's day collage :) I have missed your frequent posts and updates...shoot, been following you for years---how about a nice update soon, yourself and work, you husband, the kids, the beagle (s)? :)

Green Girl in Wisconsin

That screen time is SO key to health, the physical AND the emotional health of a kid and a grown up. Your neighborhood sounds like an idyllic place to raise a family, all that activity and mutual support.

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