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To eat the same meals as the family or not...

Saturday, October 13, 2012

I'm a mom... I have a big family and am the "cooker" (as my 7 yo says) for them. We live in MN, and we love our comfort food here--tator tot hotdish, tuna casserole, creamy soups. So, while I can make some of those items more weight-loss conscious, my stringbean kids don't need to cut the fat and calories. These kids are going going going all day long, burning energy and GROWING. They NEED healthy fats and calories.

So, for me, the questions becomes--do I eat what I've made for our main family meal with my family or do I eat something "diety"???

Well, I've decided that if one is making healthy choices (and that includes portion control!) that one can eat "normal" food and accomplish weight loss/maintenance. Plus, if one is sitting there feeling sorry for one's self while the rest of the family is clearly enjoying their normal meal, it can be a recipe for disaster. So, here is my answer to this dilemma:

I make meals that my family enjoys. I have learned some techniques to lower the fat content on some of those meals while keeping the taste. So, that can help in general. Then I also try to have lower cal options on the table for everybody (but secretly for me). For instance... I'll make tator tot hotdish with half the cream soup normally used, subbing lowfat milk as needed to make it "creamy"; skip the cheese I may have put in it, instead putting it on top of part of it or not at all; and I add LOTS of mixed veggies. Then I will make sure there are at least 2 fresh vegetable/fruit choices served alongside it. We may also have bread and butter, but I will make the conscious decision to have an extra serving of veggies instead of the bread OR I will split a slice with one of the littles. In addition to that, I make sure to CONTROL THOSE PORTIONS! I will put just a small (1/2 cup) serving of the hotdish on my plate. I can have a little more later, if I am so inclined, but I avoid the "fill the plate!" mentality. Another couple "tricks" I use are to use small "luncheon" plate instead of full-size plates for everyone (the littles are overwhelmed by the big plates, anyhow. The teens are used to getting seconds as needed) and keeping my water glass filled--lots of sips between bites.

Now, many times I do admit I eat separate meals during lunch. The littles that homeschool are 7 and 9 years old plus there is the 2 yo munchkin. Oftentimes lunch is quick and easy--which means maybe something littles will scarf down, but maybe it isn't the best choice for me. So, maybe I'll have a protein smoothie or Smart Ones dinner while the littles have pizza or PB&J sandwiches.

So what about dessert? Well, we don't have dessert every night. And when we do, I make sure that either I've planned for it when logging my meals for the day, or there is a lower calorie/fat option available for me. So while the kiddos may have root beer floats with Schwans vanilla ice cream (YUM! Real cream!) either I'll have a smaller version or I'll have my special treat of Black Cherry frozen yogurt (I love it, but the kids aren't excited about it, so they prefer their dessert). I weight it on my little electronic food scale so I'm staying at a single serving and not letting my eyes misjudge.

I have found that meal-time is a special time for my family. I strive to make healthy choices for my entire family and to be able to enjoy our meals together.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Hi there! I followed you over from Crissa1669's Spark page. I am also a hs momma of a big family. We have six children 14, 11, 9, 7, 5 and 2. I found this blog very inspiring. I am always trying to find a way to make my lifestyle change adaptable for the whole family. You have shared some really great tips. I would love to add you as a friend. Have a wonderful day!
    2047 days ago
  • CRISSA1669
    I agree with how you are handling your meals. I am also the cooker and the homeschool mama but I've got "biggies" 21, 18, 15 & 15, no more "littles" in the house :(...so they are on their own for breakfast and lunch...but we always eat dinner as a family. I cook healthy foods all of the time and I love to eat what I cook but if I'm close to max calories or plan an evening workout I have the option to forego the meal, although I still sit with the family..and I'll fix myself what ever fits into my calorie/fat/carb/protein log. I think eating real food is the best way, in the long run to lose the weight as well as keep it off. I never feel deprived and if I choose to have dessert it is one that we have homemade(besides those yummy soft serve ice cream cones from Dairy Queen the I love to have every so often lol...) otherwise..I want to enjoy the food I cook without the second guessing...I also always eat on salad plates, in fact my whole family does...we only use the big plates when we are entertaining..works out great for us!! :)
    2049 days ago
  • DR1939
    Very wise choices.
    2049 days ago
    You're a smart cookie!!
    2049 days ago
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