As parents, families and friends, I think one of the most powerful things we can do, regarding nutrition and life in general, is lead by example. As some of you may know, I’m from the UK and love my tea! However, it’s been years since I’ve had sugar in my tea ( the last time I was about 16). So when we make tea at home, mine is the only one without sugar.
I see nutrition and our family lifestyle as something that is in constant motion. It really isn’t a destination but more of a journey, which can have it’s ‘ups’ and ‘downs’, especially when a new recipe goes wrong ! I have two teenage kids who are currently training for winter biathlon, for the uninitiated it involves skate skiing and air rifle shooting. They train for 4 hours on a Saturday. So, I make sure they’ve had a good breakfast before heading out the door for training on those very cold winter days. They know that food plays a big role in how well they do.
However, with regards to changing habits, I’ve found that the best approach is to let them come to me with their questions, instead of me telling them what to do. This has lead to us having some really interesting discussions around food and lifestyle, what is the keto diet? is it suitable for them? Why do I fast? Should they try it? Definitely not!
Coming back to the tea, I was making some the other day, when my son informed me that he no longer takes sugar in his tea (out of the two kids he has the sweeter tooth) I was really surprised to hear this, as I’ve never told him to stop. However, I was delighted and that was one of my ‘ups’! He made the decision on his own and for the right reasons. He’s talked about how he has cut back on the little fast food he would sometimes get for lunch, as he knows it will impact his training in biathlon.
Changing our habits can be hard but if there is someone there to help and guide you, things suddenly seem much more achievable. So give it whirl, see if there is something, no matter how little that you could change, whether it would be eating a piece of fruit instead of drinking a juice, or having 1 sugar instead of 2 in your coffee. Maybe putting aside 10 min to make a snack instead of buying something packaged. You will be saving money and you will feel better for it.