Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Healthy Cooking Made Easy

Balancing the books and the nutrition in your family’s diet isn't easy at the best of times.  It’s so important to cover the five food groups – dairy, fruit, protein, starchy foods and small amounts of fat and sugar – while keeping it simple to alleviate time and financial pressures.  After all, most of us have busy lives and can’t spend all day in the kitchen (I wish...).  All that's needed is a plan.

Family dinner

Having a plan is one thing; sticking to it is another. However, this is essential if you want to avoid slowly going mad at dinner time.

There are so many easy recipes for dinner which keep adults and children satisfied. Beef or tuna casseroles are tasty and easy to prepare, practically cooking themselves in the oven.  A range of soups are simple to make in large batches for freezing.   The same goes for chilli con carne and curry dishes - just make sure to label the containers before they go into the freezer, otherwise you'll play the Mystery Dinner Shuffle.  I speak from experience...

When planning family meals, don't forget leftover potential!  If there's chicken left over one night, that’s stew, soup or casserole for tomorrow.  The same goes for other meats and fishes.  Just bear in mind that the general rule is to cook once and then subsequently re-heat just once for another dish. Any further heating can become unhealthy so always get cooking advice before using meat and fish more than once.  Leftover vegetables cook up well in soups and sauces, while undressed salad, if carefully wrapped up and refrigerated, can last two days.  Carbs like rice and potatoes are delicious fried up and seasoned in a new way.  Think of Arancini or Sautéed Potatoes with Chorizo - now that's a way to make leftovers really delicious.
The Bigger Picture

One of the most important aims of meal planning is to cover all the necessary nutrients.  Needless to say, as far as children are concerned, the right food groups contribute towards proper physical development.

However, child health doesn't stop with what's in the lunch box.  Kids need to learn the habit of regular exercise for rounded health.  Body strength, endurance and flexibility are the cornerstones of physical fitness.  If your child is sporty, activities such as football, volleyball, tennis, running and track-and-field are a great way of covering all the fitness necessities.  The childerbeasts are booted out of the house in all weathers and are great fans of trampolines, swings, scooters and bikes.

These days, many children are also taking part in martial arts which are excellent for mental discipline as well as fitness.  On the other hand, dance classes or gymnastics may be more suitable for some children.  There is so much choice, meaning there's no excuse for lounging in front of the telly or computer!

In association with SuperSavvyMe

1 comment:

  1. A good balance between exercise and food intake is important, as this helps to maintain muscle strength and a healthy body weight.

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