Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Toys make kids fat.

This s an article that a friend of mine told me about, which I find utterly ridiculous.

Seriously.. go read it. I'll wait.

California County Bans Toys With Fast-Food Meals


Back? Okay.. here are my thoughts about this..

The basic point: Kids want the toy more than the food, and by putting toys in healthier meals, it may entice the children to pick those meals. The problem with this thinking, is that it makes it seem that the kids are in control. Um.. hello? I don't see many kids in McDonald's ordering their own food. As a parent, we must make the right decision for our children. Yes, kids will throw a fit, maybe even NOT EAT if they don't get what they want, but that's where the test is for us, as parents. Do we give in? Or do we stand our ground? Sure - we all give in sometimes. There are things I have given in on that on a normal basis I will stand my ground, but those battles are far and few between. I feel the lesson is important, especially at Bella's age. Giving in once right now means losing a lot of the ground we've covered thus far. But back to the topic at hand - toys making kids fat.

I really think that this *could* be a good idea. In theory, it sounds great. Fine the fast food people for putting toys with unhealthy meals. They are then forced to make the kids meals healthy, or fore-go the toy. Knowing kids will want the toys (and a lot of parents, when eating on the run, don't have time/patience to argue with their children). So the kids buy the healthy meal, rather than the fatty, over greased meal.  This means kids are eating healthier foods, and get the cheesy toy that came with it. Win-Win, right?

Except, what if they have their "healthy" kids meal, eat three bites, decide its "yucky", then proceed home to where mom then allows them to snack on chips or cookies in front of the T.V. Then what was the whole point of the healthy kid's meal to begin with? Healthy snacking and eating should begin at home. Eating healthy has been something I am trying to work on. Not only for myself, but for Bella as well. MOSTLY for Bella. I want her to WANT the healthy stuff. So I make sure to offer her a huge variety of foods, and if she doesn't like it,  will still offer it to her the next time I make it. I am not into making "special" meals, unless I know she can't eat it (ie: a steak she can't chew). Then I'll make some chicken nuggets for her. I can count on one hand how many times she's had chocolate, cake, or chips. Yes, she eats lots of animal crackers, veggie straws, and apple cinnamon straws for snacks. We also consume a good amount of goldfish, cheerios, and Gerber Puffs. BUT - I do not let her snack all day. I try to make sure she gets a good rounded diet. Three meals a day. Does this mean we don't ever have junk? Not at all - Bella's favorite breakfast is apple or blueberry nutrigrain bar, or a blueberry or strawberry pop-tart. (usually un-frosted). These aren't as healthy as say.. eggs and fruit, but she won't eat eggs (I offer at least once a week, or more) and if I have fruit on hand, I usually do add that in.

If we are out, I typically eat at Chic-Fil-A. Why? Well, for one, I like eating there. They are friendly, help me out (bring me a high chair, bring my food to me, get me re-fills, etc), and I feel it's probably the healthiest choice. No, they aren't the cheapest. But you know what? I'd rather spend the money, get Bella a fruit cup, milk, and a couple chicken nuggets, than get her chicken nuggets, fries and a pop.

Just for fun - let's compare nuggets at a few fast food restaurants- the calories, fat, carbs and protein.... Just 4 pc nuggets alone

Chic-Fil-A:  130cal; 6g Fat; 6g carbs; 13g protein
McDonalds: 170cal; 10g fat; 10g carbs; 10g protein
Wendy's:      180cal; 11g fat; 10g carbs; 8g protein
Burger King: 180cal; 11g fat; 13carbs; 9g protein



So.. what have we learned? Chic-Fil-A is "healthiest" when it comes to nuggets. SURE - there is a lot more nutritional info to gather up and analyze,but really, I don't have time for that crap. AND - this isn't an advertisement for them either. My point is - healthy eating should start at home, and shouldn't have anything to do with a freaking cheap toy, either. Take the toys out for all I care, they end up in the trash a day later anyhow!


Back to snacking - I *hate* grazing. I know I do it, but I try not to. Kevin does it ALL the time, and Bella is picking up this habit, and it affects how she eats her meals. I have "designated" snack times - in between breakfast and lunch, and depending on how long she naps in the afternoon, maybe one or two snack times between lunch and dinner. Snack can be yogurt, fruit, animal crackers, veggie straws, cheerios, cottage cheese, string cheese.. whatever I have on hand, and it also depends on where we are or what we are doing. If we are on the go, it's obviously going to be the dry pantry stuff, rather than refrigerated/messy stuff. These are things I want to teach her - pick the healthy stuff. So when we are out to eat, and she does get fries - they are a "special treat" rather than the fruit being the treat.



So, maybe instead of taking toys away, the restaurants can just change their menu's. Or - still take the toys away..because I don't need that crap cluttering the house up anyhow!


nutritional info taken from calorielab.com I am not responsible for how accurate it may or may not be. BK info was from www.bk.com
**yes I rambled a LOT in this post. I've been up since just after 4am. Plus, if you ever read any of my blogs, you know it's a bad habit of mine anyhow.

3 comments:

  1. I like your thinking. I read about how CA wants to take away the toys...but it doesn't really solve the problem. I agree - the problem starts at home. Teaching healthy habits is the most important thing.

    HOWEVER - I think your new layout colors make your blog harder to read. :(

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  2. Hm.. i didn't think the blue on the black was hard to read. It will be changing soon, don't worry my dear. next will be something patriotic =)

    Thanks for commenting =)

    ReplyDelete