One of the most common (and important) topics kids ask me about is food. How many fruits and vegetables should I eat? If I eat a bowl of ice cream, does that mean I need to eat an extra vegetable? I ate three carrots, is that enough? What if I only eat fruits and vegetables? Sometimes my yogurt has fruit in it, does that count? Are strawberry Gushers a fruit?
I love these questions, especially when they come from kids, because it shows that kids are paying attention to and taking an interest in nutrition. What you eat is one of the most important decisions you make for your short and long term health, so building healthy habits at a young age is incredibly important!
Fruits and vegetables should play a major role in your meals, so I want to teach you one of my favorite rules of thumb: halftime. When you look at your plate for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, half of your plate should be full of fruits and vegetables. Fruits and veggies come in so many different shapes and colors, so you can have lots of fun picking your fruit and vegetable half!If half of your plate is macaroni and cheese, try filling the other half with blueberries and carrots.If you have chicken, maybe find some broccoli and strawberries.
Halftime is important for everyone in your family, so be creative and, most importantly, be brave! Try new fruits and vegetables all the time, they provide important vitamins and nutrients and you may just find a new favorite food too :)
Dr. Patches is the star of Tiny Docs. Her purple hair, bubbly personality, and infectious kindness make her beloved to both her co-workers and patients.