By Doug Varrieur
Hidden sugar, even in supposedly healthy snacks, is a leading cause of the childhood obesity epidemic that is threatening our children’s health and their future.
Fortunately, there are lots of things parents can do to help their kids eat well and avoid becoming fat. It starts with Sugar-Proofing your child. Sugar-Proofing is as simple as following these 10 steps:
Spot the hidden SUGAR
Understand how to read labels
Get your children involved
Remove all the foods and drinks that metabolize into blood sugar
Prepare your family meals
Replace the foods that metabolize into sugar with foods that don’t
Organize a Sugar-Proof gang
Offer your help in teaching others what you’ve learned
Forget everything you’ve been taught
To accomplish this read labels — every label — until you know the information like the back of your hand. Once you start looking at how much sugar is there, you will be astounded. For instance, it is not unusual to find sugar grams at double digits per serving in “healthy” whole grain cereals, snacks and drinks. An 8-ounce glass of apple juice has 25 grams of sugar! Is it any surprise our kids are fat and getting fatter all the time?
Once you start reading food labels and avoiding sugar, picking the right products soon becomes second nature. Be sure to include your children in the learning process. Kids are smart and like you, they want to make their own decisions, not be told what to do.
Teaching your child that eating a bowl of bran flakes with raisins is the same as eating 15 teaspoons of sugar right from the sugar bowl creates what I call the Gross Factor. Kids always react with the same disgust when they visualize eating 15 teaspoons of table sugar from the sugar bowl.
The way to start Sugar-Proofing is to remove all the foods and beverages from your home — not only those that contain processed sugar but also those that metabolize into blood sugar. The simple way to recognize those is to look for carbohydrates. All foods containing carbohydrates change, gram for gram, into glucose (blood sugar) in the body. Too much glucose and you get fat, or worse, you get fat and develop type 2 diabetes.
So how do you get rid of all those sugary, carbohydrate-loaded foods already in your kitchen? Take back what you can, donate to food banks, throw open stuff away and clear the playing field. It’s time to start Sugar-Proofing!
Cooking will become a part of your life so learn to enjoy it. Kids today have learned to microwave quick meals full of sugar. Micro mac and cheese, hot pockets and pizza are leading the way to obesity and type 2 diabetes. Preparing your family meals gives YOU full control over what foods your children eat in your home. It also allows you to prepare snack trays with the leftovers giving your children easy access to quick healthy snacks. By replacing all those sugar-laden foods with healthy alternatives you’re well on your way to Sugar-Proofing.
It’s very important to have replacement foods at hand for all the kids’ favorites. Creating new taste buds and eating habits is easy when you have the right products. Learn what products to buy and where to get them, and then stock up! You can buy or make sugar-free replacements for everything including pasta, cakes, cookies, cereals, sweets and side dishes if you know where to look and how to read labels.
But what about outside the home? How do you keep your child on track when they’re out of sight? Simple! Organize a Sugar-Proof gang. Get the parents of your child’s friends together and join forces. With all the parents on board, peer pressure to eat the proper foods becomes a good thing.
Eating habits during events such as birthdays, church outings, sleepovers and many others can all be improved if you step up to help Sugar-Proof your kids. You’ll know the recipes that replace the high sugar foods. You’ll know how to read labels, buy the proper foods and serve low-sugar snacks. Instead of letting your child walk into a lion’s den, take control. Become part of the event by offering suggestions, recipes, covered dishes and snacks. You will not only insure your child has a good time with healthy foods to eat — you will also be teaching others the dangers of hidden sugar.
Finally, forget everything you’ve been taught. Our children’s health is in the worst shape in history. Never before have we as a nation seen the high levels of obesity and associated diseases that we do today. This upcoming generation of children, our children, are projected to live a shorter life span than their parents.
Don’t let this statistic affect your family, forget what you’ve learned and reeducate yourself and your family, Sugar-Proof your children today.
© 2010 Doug Varrieur
About the Author: Doug Varrieur is a successful entrepreneur and business consultant who battled weight gain his whole life until he discovered the simple fat-burning methods he reveals in his new book, FAT TO SKINNY Fast and Easy! At age 46, Doug lost more than 100 pounds, went from a size 48 to 32 waist and reversed his type 2 diabetes. More than seven years later, he has kept the fat off. Doug's wife Sherri also lost 75 pounds, all without special prepackaged foods, surgery, drugs or exercise. Doug wrote Fat To Skinny because he wanted to save lives by helping others to conquer obesity and related diseases. Learn more at www.FATtoSKINNY.com. Contact Doug at email@example.com.