Sticking to a healthy diet isn’t the easiest process for someone who’s used to consuming junk food all the time. This is why it’s best to teach children to enjoy healthy foods when they’re little. If you’re struggling to figure out how to pry the chicken nuggets and pizza slices from their little hands, know that it’ll take intentionality and creativity. Consider the following steps to create an achievable diet plan for your entire family.
1. Consider the Tastebuds
If your family loves Mexican and Latin-inspired food, bring those flavors into your preparation as you cook healthier meals. Fresh cilantro, queso fresco, and fresh jalapenos are a few of the staples you’ll want to keep in your refrigerator at all times. Use them to infuse flavor into soups, or use them as delightful garnishes for tacos and salads. When your family gets to enjoy the same flavors of their beloved cuisines, it won’t be as challenging to gradually make the transition to healthier meals.
2. Find Alternative Recipes
In many cases, you can still enjoy many of your favorite dishes when you prepare them in a healthy manner. If you and your family thoroughly enjoy spaghetti dinners with meaty sauces and parmesan cheese, you don’t have to swap everything out. Just simply toss the spaghetti and trade it for spaghetti squash. When you’ve paired it with all of the other items you use for a great spaghetti dinner, you all won’t even miss the carbs of spaghetti. Plus, you’ll know that your family is consuming another vegetable and lowering their caloric intake significantly.
3. Customize According to the Person
Even though it might involve a few extra steps, be willing to customize meals to the person’s needs. For example, if you have a child who will consume spinach when it’s found in a green smoothie, don’t remove sauteed spinach from the menu for that day. Just make a quick green smoothie for them. They’ll get their vegetable serving, and you’re still helping them remain on a healthy diet plan. If you want to stick to a keto diet plan, enlist the help of an expert in order to create a custom keto meal plan. When the family is enjoying pizza, enjoy a keto-friendly version of pizza. You’ll still feel satiated as you stick to your personal diet plan.
4. Develop a Transitional Process
Give yourself grace, and extend that grace to your family as well. When you all are making lifestyle changes, the goal is to make sure they stick. If you try a cold-turkey approach, you’re setting everyone up for a harder experience. Instead, find ways to transition, and set goals for those transitions. If your toddler doesn’t like a lot of vegetables, start by placing one or two pieces of a vegetable on their plate. Instead of placing a mound of broccoli on their plate, just place one or two pieces. Consider adding a dip like hummus or ranch dressing. This is less intimidating, and it can help them adjust to the healthier foods that will show up on their plates. If you’d like for your family to try more plant-based meals, consider making pizza at home. However, when you make it, top it with a vegan cheese alternative. Whether you make the vegan cheese or purchase it from the grocery store, make sure it’s a version that your family can enjoy. Swap whole milk for oat milk to see how they do. As you make these small changes over a period of a few months to a year, you’ll help your family naturally settle into a new way of eating.
5. Be Willing to Pivot
If a specific recipe isn’t working, let it go. If your child still really misses their favorite takeout pizza, consider keeping it as an occasional dinner option. If you’re feeling lethargic without the consumption of your beloved latte in the morning, consider pivoting to a healthier recipe first. It’s not uncommon for people to experience withdrawal symptoms when they’ve grown attached to a certain ingredient (sugar, caffeine). Don’t beat yourself or use this as a sign to give up completely. Instead, find ways to pivot and experiment until you find a better alternative.
While every process requires some transition time, be patient. If you think a child will willingly embrace a celery stick after you’ve taken their beloved chips away, you’re sadly mistaken. Thankfully, with these tips, you can cultivate a dietary plan that both you and your family will thoroughly enjoy as you all prioritize health and wellness.
This post was created with our nice and easy submission form. Create your post!