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I’ve been out of touch lately and a little song comes to mind, “Toes in the water, arse in the sand, not a worry in the world, cold “drink” in my hand.  Life is good today.  Life is good today.”  Had a great vacation on the beach, but now it’s back to reality….the house, the dog, the kids, the laundry, the GYM (omg!) and back to blogging (yeah!).   We tried our best to remain Primal on our vacation and I will soon share our menu of sorts, but today I would like to pass along a post from Naturally Engineered concerning nutrition and kids (again!).  The mention of the cheese and crackers with the little red spreading stick really hit home with me, as it was not that long ago they were what got me through a trip to the grocery store with toddlers in tow.  Now I know better.  Life is good today.

Dietary Dilemmas for Primal Parents With Young Children

Posted Jul 19, 2011 03:00 am

This article is a guest post by Jason Masterson, author of WhatAboutJason.com

parent-and-baby-hand

When you’re a kid, your parents are your universe. You turn to them for instruction and guidance, what they say is law. They are your sole providers. Not only do they provide you shelter and the clothes on your back, but they are responsible for every morsel of food that goes in your mouth.

I recently became a parent, and until then, I never really thought about the choices my parents had to make when it came down to nutrition. I always assumed what was put on my plate was what every other kid was eating. I understand (or at least I hope) that every parent is trying to provide their child with the best nutrition possible, but as far back as I can remember sugary soda, cereals, cookies, chips, and snack cakes were readily available in our pantry. I often wonder if my self esteem as a child would have been different if there was more discipline in my nutrition intake.

Now that I have my own child, I have the opportunity to make nutrition a priority in my house hold. But before I go stepping up on a soap box, I feel it’s important to note that I haven’t always been this concerned with nutrition. As we get older we become more aware of whats available to us and understand the rights and wrongs of what we should be consuming. It wasn’t until about four months ago that everything finally clicked for me. I decided to adopt a primal lifestyle and have been reaping the benefits ever since. I have lost over 20 pounds and have never felt better physically.

So how does a new parent go about bringing nutrition to the forefront of a child’s development?

Is it me or does nutrition seem trendy again? Perhaps it’s just the prominence of social media and the ability to spread the word. There is always going to be a new fad diet that is everywhere in the news, but it seems to me that more and more families and becoming “nutritionally aware” and making it publicly known. Take Sarah Fragoso over at Everyday Paleo for example. She has become a leader in the primal world and has built her foundation starting at home with her family.

What intrigues and inspires me the most about Sarah’s story is how she has modeled her everyday family life around the primal lifestyle. Through her stories, it is clear to me now that it is possible to maintain a happy home, with happy children, that does not partake in a Happy Meal.

I haven’t been primal the entire 18 months of my daughter’s life, but I have been aware. From day one, my wife (who is vegeterianish*… don’t ask) and I agreed that we would make a conscious effort to provide our child with the best food possible. This typically means organic everything. Though it may be cheaper to buy her frozen food in bulk from Walmart, I’d rather not have to return to said Walmart to buy my daughter her first training bra by the age of six thanks to the hormone injected chicken.

What I have discovered in this short period of time is that it it can be just as convenient to provide organic foods as it is a value meal.

Remember snack time? Heck, I still look forward to snack time on a daily basis. When I was a kid, snack time typically meant some form of cheese and cracker and a juice box of Hawaiian Punch. And not just any old cheese and cracker mind you. I ‘m talking about the kind you open in that little package with the red stick to spread the cheese. That stuff was awesome! Give me that and an episode of G.I. Joe and I was good to go. Sadly I would have probably been better off drinking mineral spirits and eating paint chips. But I get it. The juice box and package of cheese like substance and crackers was convenient.

Luckily things have changed quite a bit since then. As my daughter gets older and is able to try more and more foods, I have found there a plenty of REAL food options out there. One of the biggest struggles is providing quality food on the go. One of our most recent discoveries are these squeezable fruit and veggie pouches. They are a terrific way to ensure she is getting a good portion of organic fruits and veggies on a daily basis and they are very easy for parents to tote around. I’m not sure if apricot, sweet potato, and plum is a tasty combination but she seems to like them.

I guess what I’ve learned as a new dad is that a vast majority of today’s parents just don’t seem to give a damn. There is no reason why one in three U.S. children born in the year 2000 could develop type 2 diabetesduring their lifetime. The options are out there. I understand it costs more money to purchase free range grain fed eggs, but instead of buying that six pack of honey wheat ale for yourself, perhaps you could provide your child with steroid free sustenance.

I am not going to pretend that my child has never eaten cake or tasted a french fry, but at least those types of indulgences are treated as such. I can’t picture my child at full Primal status at 18 months of age, but at least I know we are doing the best we can to provide her with the healthiest food options possible. And although I know people in Sarah Fragoso’s  primal camp have raised newborns on a strict Paleo diet, I’m not quite ready to take that leap. At least I can take comfort in knowing the fruits and veggies, poultry and meats, grains and dairy products my child does eat didn’t come from a science lab.

If any of you parents out there have brought your children up caveman status, I would love to hear your tale. I know it can be done, but this is my first kid and I really don’t want to break this one… perhaps the second can be the guinea pig. Until then… Grok on!

About the Author

jason-mastersonMy name is Jason Masterson. I am a Father, husband, IT manager, marathon runner, CrossFitter, and recent Paleo enthusiast. I run a little blog called WhatAboutJason. It’s my own little corner of the Internet where I discuss things from nutrition, to fitness, to plain old random rants. You can follow my blog by liking my FaceBook page HERE and Twitter page HERE. Thanks for stopping by!

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