Unjunk Their Junk Food, Auntie!
Our sweets and treats are a significant part of our holidays, coping mechanisms (think comfort food), and of course, family visits with our nieces and nephews. However, overindulging them with junk food can lead to lethargy or the opposite, hyper-active children. The issue with most of the junk food we are used to buying are made with artificial, unhealthy and sometimes downright dangerous ingredients. In addition to high-fructose corn syrup, and trans fats, many contain food dyes, artificial flavors (such as MSG), emulsifiers, and other ingredients that have been linked to food allergies (some fatal), behavioral problems, learning disorders, skin troubles, and other health complaints.
Savvy Auntie Sheila explains that when her young nieces and nephews come to stay at her cottage, she hates the idea of feeding them junk – especially since she’ll be stuck with the leftovers when the kids leave. Always on her mind, though, is that she doesn’t want the kids to think she's an 'uncool' aunt and that they'll stop wanting to come and visit because they’re being fed tasteless food that’s ‘good for them.’ Sheila brings up a good point. As aunts and uncles, we want to spoil our nieces and nephews, but at what cost?
We might think that M&Ms are a good option to serve our loved ones since they are portable, and fun to eat. Truth be told, one package of M&Ms contain ten different types of food coloring including red 40 lake, blue 2 and yellow 5. Instead we recommend swapping them for SunSpire SunDrops which taste a lot like the real thing, but use beta-carotene and beet juice for color — neither of which will negatively affect children's behavior.
We just released our first book, Unjunk Your Junk Food. The benefits in the book are all about minimizing your nieces’ and nephews’ exposure to artificial ingredients, preservatives, food coloring, pesticides and other manufactured ingredients that may contribute to the development of chronic health conditions. Our book paves the way for a healthier lifestyle while still allowing for occasional indulgences. Well, in our book, we consider that 'cool'.
You can pick up a copy of Unjunk Your Junk Food at your local book store, or online at Barnes & Noble and Amazon.com.
Published: December 27, 2011