Yes, it’s true… I work in a gym, I am constantly asked for recommendations on food choices and options. Pretty much every time I see each of my clients, I ask them what they’ve been eating– that day, that week, in general. Many of these people also have children, whom they bring with them to the gym daycare. Although I generally hear reports of how “good” they’ve been, it never ceases to amaze me when I find their child was left with snacks of Pop Tarts and Pringles for their 1 hour stay at the gym. WHAT?
“But that’s all they’ll eat.” “They don’t have a weight problem; they can eat whatever they like and not gain any weight.” Okay, so… this is troubling to me on two different levels.
#1. They are keeping this food in the house in general. Remove temptation and results follow. Unless you have some crazy willpower, practicalmomma is willing to bet that like most Americans, you have been trained from childhood that to throw food away is wasteful. So what do you do with those “last few bites” of whatever? Yeah, you eat it, rather than throw it out. 40 calories here, 50 there, 25 there… they add up.
#2. What kind of example are they/you setting? At the risk of sounding like a broken record, habits are learned and formed very early. Notice the rising obesity and diabetes epidemic amongst the under-20 set? Not a coincidence. The patterns children develop in their youth eventually catch up to them. Teaching children about nutrition early is key for them to succeed as healthy adults.
Set the example! Physical activity and healthy eating are important for everyone, not just growing infants and toddlers, women on diets, and bodybuilders in the gym– EVERYONE! Healthy body = healthy mind. If your body is not functioning at its optimal level, what are you missing out on? What might your kids be missing out on?