I budget per person as well for meals. My oldest gets the cash (he's almost 18 and works in a kitchen where he gets a great deal on his meals. He is a good height/weight ratio and often cooks at home too.) I prepare family meals for the two girls (14 and 11) and husband and self with the other money. I only buy/make 1-2 "treats" per week, so I stock up on healthy food.
I've been bringing my 11 yr old to the nutritionist at the drs office for several months now. It's expensive, but she needs the help the most. She is still resistant to portion control. Things have improved however and last check up, she had stayed the same and not gained any weight. So that was improvement. She has her next check up Tues, so I am hoping it will re-inspire her. I'd love to share healthy lifestyle literature/articles with her to up her education level because she does do things once she is convinced. But it doesn't go down so easy coming from Mom.
We only drink water and skim milk. Everyone has a good water bottle to use all the time.
I'm cooking healthy meals (vegetarian since both girls are so they get plenty of fruits and veggies and whole grains, etc.) Lately it's been too busy since I've been overwhelmed being cookie mom and we've eaten out more. I am ready to be done with that task and thinking I need to streamline my life so I have more time to take care of myself and the kids properly. I just have to say no to more things and make it a priority.
Fitness Minutes: (10,936)
1,550 3/4/12 2:07 A
I'm doing an experiment and I'll let you know how it works out when we've been at it for a while longer. Due to many reasons beyond my control, each person eats different foods than the other family members (I'd love it if we all sat down to the same food each meal--but that ain't happening), so we started a system for the kids like this:
Each child (12 & 14-years old) must make a weekly menu plan of Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, two snack/day plus any treats, take out, Starbucks, etc. with each meal (B, L, D) consisting of at least one protein and one fresh fruit or vegetable. They are welcome to add whatever they want to the meals to add nutrition, variety, etc...
Each child gets a food budget of $80/week. This may seem high but we live in an expensive area and expect them to purchase organic, nitrate-free, preservative-free foods and it's no more than we spend per child anyway. Whatever they don't use for the week can be banked for future food purchases/birthday parties (not socked away for other uses).
I took each child (separately) to the grocery store we use most (TJ's!) and had them record prices per quantity of their favorite foods. For instance, a loaf of bread is $3.99 and has 12 slices. Then they added their foods and prices to a data base I'd already made of TJ's prices, so we now have prices for pretty much everything we buy there. This allows them to match their budgets to their menus prior to going to the store.
They make a shopping list for me, I pay for the items separately with their money and return the list with the receipt attached. I stick a color-coded label on the food before it goes into the pantry or refrigerator so there is no question as to what belongs to whom.
I'm hoping they'll learn all about nutrition, food preparation and budgeting through this experience. My main goal is to make them mindful of what they're eating.
I fed my children super healthy meals as they grew up but when they became teenagers they decided on what they wanted to eat no matter how I tried to influence them. And to this day they still eat their way. One good thing is that they are starting to ask me for some of my recipes. They are young men now and I see some awareness but there's still a lot of room for improvement. But I just zip my mouth and take care of myself. Whenever they come over I do make them eat salad with their meal no matter what so they no they have to do that. I believe in time, maybe when they have kids, that's scary, they'll improve their choices of food but until then at least they're healthy and living productive lives.
Fitness Minutes: (2,244)
114 2/13/12 10:16 P
leaning good eating habits starts at a young age. The damage is done and it's up to her now to make those good choices on her own. I would just keep giving her advice
Fitness Minutes: (56,933)
3,204 2/11/12 2:54 P
I wish I knew the answer to that one!My 17-1\2 yo daughter eats candy,cookies,cakes,soda,fried food,pizza,fast food,sugary cereal,ice cream and chips.She of course buys it herself but,I try to talk to her about better choices but,no luck!
Fitness Minutes: (13,856)
175 2/6/12 9:25 A
We can lead a horse to water but we can't make them drink. Same for teens and the majority of folks. We need to, not only WANT to make the changes, but be ready. All we can do is love them and keep showing them the way by walking the walk.
Fitness Minutes: (45,248)
6,715 1/26/12 9:35 A
All you can really do is set a good example and offer healthy food at home. Make sure she's got good food to take for lunches - lean meats, hard boiled eggs, fruits, veggies, etc. If she decides she really wants to lose weight, she'll either ask for your help, or more likely, start doing something on her own. I have four kids - the youngest one will be 17 next week. I've found that - just like husbands - they don't like to be pushed into anything that isn't their own idea. If the opportunity arises and she asks, you can offer to share what you've learned here. i.e. Start by making one small change, drink more water - less pop, etc., etc. Maybe you could have her check out SparkTeens. My daughter's health class did a two-week unit on nutrition and her teacher (who happened to be a friend of mine and knew I was using the site) required all of them to track their meals on SparkTeens for two weeks. It was an eye-opener for some of them.
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