Last Sunday the lesson for the kids was all about what we should put into our bodies. The teacher would hold up a picture of something (for example, carrots or a cigarette) and the kids had to decide whether it was good or bad for our bodies. Carrots and cigarettes were easy enough. But when she held up the pictures of chicken nuggets and macaroni & cheese, there was definitely some confusion among the kids and even the adults.
This Sunday lesson got me thinking how greatly opinions vary on what healthy food is. Some of the more common things I've heard people disagree over: artificial sweeteners, sugar vs HFCS, dairy, meat and preservatives.
Some families might consider baked potato chips, cottage cheese or packaged granola bars as health foods. I admit that a couple years ago, I ate them thinking I was doing something healthy. I will still buy them for my children OCCASIONALLY if they want them. I try to teach them why certain things are better choices and show them by example and then hope that they will choose wisely for themselves as they get older.
My kids have a wonderful preschool teacher. She teaches a lesson on healthy eating. She gives the children a paper plate and some pictures of different foods cut from magazines. The kids get to paste the pictures on the front of the plate if they're "Healthy Foods" and on the back if they are "Sometimes Foods". They really enjoy this activity and talk about healthy food and sometimes food for weeks after. I only wish they'd remember it when they get to Jr. High!