I try to feed my 1-year-old a healthy, well-balanced diet. I make the majority of his baby food from fresh fruits and veggies, only resorting to jarred food when we travel. I feel good knowing I am providing him with the nutrition he needs to grow up healthy and strong. He eats whole grains. We severely limit snacks with added sugar. It’s a real effort sometimes, but I am happy to do it for him because I know it’s best for his development.
Enter: my hypocrisy as a parent. Last week, I was feeding him sweet potato chunks drizzled with olive oil and a pinch of cinnamon. He LOVES these and he’s sitting in front of me, in his high chair, eating away. I, on the other hand, am sitting in front of him eating a 3-piece chicken select meal (including the medium fries and REGULAR coke) from McDonald’s.
Yup. It’s a terrible habit and one that I know I have to break, because I do not want my child to eat fast food on a regular basis. I’m not going to sit here and say that I don’t ever want to feed him fast food. Sometimes, it’s just unavoidable when you’re in a major hurry or you’re on a road trip and starving because you were ill-prepared.
I watched as he stared at me inquisitively while I ate my french fries, knowing full well that one day he is going to cry when I refuse him one. I don’t want to be that parent that preaches one thing and practices another. I always resented that in my own upbringing and vowed that I would not be a hypocrite in my life’s practices.
Giving up fast food is one of my 2012 New Year’s resolutions. I do think it’ll be a challenge, for me, because it’s just all too convenient to drive the 2 miles (or less) to the nearby McDonald’s and get my soda fix along with whatever meal I end up ordering. It’s too easy!
I need to plan meals. Period.
Lately, I’ve been planning my son’s meals and making an extra portion for me. He eats pretty much everything at this point, so it just kind of makes sense since he eats so healthy.
How many times have you stood in front of your fridge and stared at all the items on the shelves only to close it and walk away? I do it every single day. I have food. I have good, healthy food. I just don’t know what to do with it sometimes and I get sick of making the same thing from week to week. A friend of mine introduced me to this super helpful website, Supercook.com, that helps you put together a meal based on the ingredients in your refrigerator. Bonus!
I am going to conquer this meal planning hurdle and, damnit, put a stop to my fast food addiction. I refuse to allow my son to grow up with a crutch like that. Sometimes, our children inspire us to do better. Be better. This is a shining example of that. I have said for years that I wanted to limit my fast food consumption, but it took having a baby to make it a reality.
Here’s to resolutions. Here’s to a healthier year with more fresh fruits and veggies … and well-balanced (well-planned) meals.