My little guy is fascinated, okay a little obsessed, with the healthfulness of his food. In a way I am thankful for this because I want him to be cognizant of the quality of what he eats. But I am also worried that his focus is so razor-sharp that he'll end up being all nutso about it like me later in life. So I've started a little therapy fund just in case.
But in the meantime, he's been asking me on a daily, sometimes hourly basis, whether this is healthy or that is healthy. Restaurants we pass, foods we eat (or don't eat), stuff he sees other people eat...everything and everyone is fair game (you haven't lived until you've heard your preschooler scold someone at a park for eating Wendy's). But while the foods he asks about keep changing, I've found my answers are pretty much the same: some of it is, some of it isn't.
There is a Subway next to the frozen yogurt place we frequent, and so he asks, "is Subway healthy?" And my answer: "some of it is...." Yes, you can have something healthy at Subway, and it is better than some other places where you can grab a quick meal, but you can also get a huge meatball sub smothered in cheese and buy a cookie, a soda, and a bag of chips on the way out. Not healthy.
And the froyo: "is frozen yogurt healthy?" I reply: "some of it is..." The yogurt place we go to has truly healthy yogurt and lots of fresh fruit for toppings. But they also have a whole line full of candy you can dump in. Not so healthy.
We drive down the road and he asks about this and that, which is healthy and which is not, and I keep telling him that some of it is, some of it isn't, and most of the time we do a great job of taking something that started out good for us and loaded it up with sugar and fat and presto! Made it unhealthy. It's as if making perfectly good food unhealthy is our nation's collective super power.
My son seems to be like most Americans: he's aware of the health value of his food, but it doesn't really stop him from wanting to eat too many sweets and skip the veggies. But I'm glad he is at least asking the questions, and hopefully getting the message that in a lot of cases, the health value of our food lies in our hands.
This week is about the choices we make in our health. Today, look at what you eat and ask yourself, did I unhealthify this?
Then get out there and be healthy!