A large percentage of the time, dinner is the family meal that all gather to discuss the latest in each other’s lives. However this is not so much the case any more, many people still try to make it the main meal of the day. Studies suggest a child’s Dinner should at least be the most balanced of the three meals whether or not it’s a family get together meal everyone would want.
Find the Right Meal
It can become complicated trying to find a meal for your child that is well balanced and able to provide enough substance to allow to get a good night’s sleep and help not to feel too hungry when you wake. This is where you will find meals that enable your child to try a wide selection of foods from all different food groups. This is where you will want to have a try at almost everything in order to be able to have a complete meal; it doesn’t have to be overly large, just have variety.
Things to Remember
It’s good to remember, as everything moderation is key and because it’s the largest meal doesn’t mean you should over fill yourself at dinner. Smaller amounts of a lot of different foods is key in creating a healthy food preference for your child. Pay attention to portion sized to be sure you can include all the necessary food groups to aid a good night’s sleep for you and your child.
Starch, protein and vegetable are the three main groups that needs to be included in the dinner meal. All these three items should be taking up the same amount of space on your plate, so for example you should not eat a pound of steak and two baby carrots, you need to keep your meals balanced. You can even include a fruit or a small and healthy dessert. However the portions should not be large and should not dominate the meal. A mean should contain around four ounces to each of the three main groups and a smaller portion of any of the other items.
The last thing to be careful of with dinner is timing. In this instance you need to consider how late your child will be eating. You may want to consider that after 8pm the body does not allow for proper digestion and metabolism of these foods, so make sure you and your child have a balanced and well timed meal.
Anyone who is looking to lead a healthy lifestyle, protein is an essential part of this, however one source that many use too much of is red meat. Red meat should not always be the first option, even though its a welcome staple to any dinner table.
There are many other options to consider and it helps to be creative when it comes to making a healthy, balanced dinner. One of the most under appreciated is turkey, many people may see this as a seasonal dish and not even think about making it when Proteinspreparing a family meal. However it is available in many different forms and can be used to make many different meals. One of the major forms this white meat takes is ground turkey. Ground turkey can be used as a replacement for anything that would have been used as ground beef, or any other red meat. This would include meatloaf, burgers or meatballs. Seasoning can be added as well as other ingredients that will not only enhance flavour, but can make it a healthier option for you and your child’s diet.
Another recommended way to prepare turkey is in the form of skinless breast pieces. This is because the skin of a turkey is the prime source of fat that is on the bird. You can use this part to make it into an entrée or to serve a smaller version of Thanksgiving dinner throughout the year. Turkey is a nice meat if cooked properly and it can be a real change of pace and can lead to people wanting more with out actually realising that it’s actually a healthier option than other meats.
However this is of course as long as it is prepared correctly. Throughout the years we’ve found white meats like chicken and turkey are better baked as the best method preparation. Also, the use of proper side dishes to go with them is important to remember when preparing balanced meals for your child.
If turkey doesn’t work in a certain meal you can use it to lessen the amount of red meat that’s in the meal. If you are to mix it half and half you may be able to sneak in a healthier option without anyone knowing. The use of ground turkey can aid to reduce the amount of fat that is brought on by the consumption of red meat. Not only will this be a welcome addition to the family, but yours and your child’s body as well. Soon you will reap the rewards of a healthier lifestyle, and be comfortable in the knowledge you chose a healthier option for you and your family.