It has been a week since my last blog about eating healthy during COVID. And during that time, I’ve found it easier each day to resist what few junk-food temptations remain. The relative scarcity of cookies, cupcakes, and other packaged snacks in my pantry has definitely raised the bar on my nutrition.
Ditto for my kids.
But I’m bracing for a rebellion, now that we’ve been under the same roof, 24/7, for three weeks. Teenagers may be wise in the ways of proper nutrition, but often struggle to walk the talk. In particular my 17-year-old son who I’ve overheard lecturing his friends online, while at the same time reaching into a bag of cookies by his computer. He has good intentions, but…
Do as I say, not as I do.
Include the Kids in Meal Planning
So in the interests of preserving the peace, we are including our kids more in meal planning. Which if you’re practicing good COVID etiquette and shopping less often, means taking the time to craft a good grocery list that will last a week – maybe two. Sure, you’ll have to pick up fresh produce more often, but that’s a relatively quick outing.
I find that when kids are invested in the decisions, such as choosing particular recipes and food items, they are more likely to eat and enjoy them. The challenge is to steer them away from stuff like pizza pockets and towards, for example, a home-made thin-crust pizza with cauliflower crust and healthy toppings like spinach, roasted peppers, sautéed onions and mushrooms.
Or, as a time-saver, grabbing one of our own freshly-made pizzas that are ready to pop in the oven and serve. Sometimes we’ll add our own toppings for an even better slice!
So far, we’ve been stuck at home for roughly the minimum time needed to form a new habit or drop an old one. From what I have read, the 21-day rule probably works for something easy like drinking two glasses of water when you get up. But disrupting a junk food or sugar habit likely takes longer.
With COVID being a huge issue for the next several weeks – or months – we’ll have plenty of opportunity to make significant changes. And reap the rewards.
So, let’s get started!
And as always, practice safe distancing and good hygiene – and be safe.