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Exercising Values

Happy, Healthy, Kind, & Considerate Kids

Not So Sweet Formula for High Achieving Children

children diet fitness goals habits nutrition parenting selfcare weight loss May 21, 2012

Naturally, you want everything to be perfect when you experience the birth of your first child. I remember that one restriction I asked my medical team to honor was to not give my baby any sugar water. I remember waking up and seeing the nurse doing exactly that. I came alert quickly and asked her what she was doing. She actually put the bottle behind her back and said "nothing" like a small child caught in the act. I then asked her what was behind her back and she slowly brought it out, told me I was being silly and at my insistance handed me my baby.

It seems like the world has conspired to put too much sugar in my children's mouths ever since. We used to own a bakery-yes, I know.  We tried to limit taking product home (product sounding less alarming than cookies,cakes,and doughnuts) but still we had our share. So I'm not sharing this information because I've mastered sugar avoidance but because the evidence is mounting that it is extremely harmful to our health and I want you to see this in case you missed it's airing about a month ago.

We actually had a baker that thought it was funny to put a scoop of pure frosting in our kids' mouths when our backs were turned. So I'm certainly not judging you. Let's just try to improve on this area together. I have the excuse of being a grandma now but I'm trying not to use it knowing what we know today.

One reason this can be so hard is that sugar seems to be a part of so many social situations. Sometimes to do right by our kids we simply can't allow what others are allowing. You'll have to sort out your own limits. While the avarage American is eating one third of a pound of sugar a day some researchers are recommending that men eat no more than 150 added sugar calories in all it's forms and women no more than 100. The ever popular notion of "moderation" can be skewed when people are eating such large amounts of sugar on average.

Dr. Seuss tried over forty publishers before getting his first children's book published.  Whenever someone is truly innovative it can take a while for his new ideas to catch on. Creativity and the willingness to do something a bit differently than others do it may be needed. When you take something away from someone that is harmful, it is a good idea to introduce something new that is just as desired.

You can substitute attention for food treats or a special outing. You can learn to make healthy food attractive. I still remember while living with a family during college that their eight year old boy chose spinach soup as his special birthday dish. I was impressed that this busy single mom had found the time to cook homemade soup at some point and make it one of her children's favorites.

To be high achieving you must feel well. Steady blood sugar keeps moods even as well. It makes it easier to burn fat and maintain a healthy weight. That, in turn, promotes self-esteem. It is easier to pay attention in school and to not fight with siblings and friends when you feel well. Fruit is a great substitute for man-made sweets, full of fiber, vitamins, and minerals.

I hope you will give careful consideration to what some doctors and researchers are saying to warn us about having sugar be a part of our children's diets. One of the great motivators to clean up our own diet is to desire to improve our children's wellbeing. Please think about your own relationship with sugar and what you are teaching your children.

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About the Author

Pamela Davenport

MSW, CPT, PES, CES, FNS, YES, SFS ACE

For decades I have helped countless parents and their children overcome significant obstacles. My unique accomplishments in the fields of child development, health, and fitness have given me an unparalleled perspective and expertise that I would love to share with you.

  • Award-Winning Author and Parenting Coach
  • Mother of six and grandmother of five
  • Studied Juvenile Justice at Stanford University
  • Master’s degree in Social Work
  • Experienced family counselor
  • Support group leader for struggling parents
  • Taught health at the university level
  • Program manager for the personal training programs at two colleges
  • Personal Trainer helping people lose 5lb-100lb+
  • Two-time Ironman Triathlete and competing member of team USA
  •  UMB Lifetime Sportswoman Award 2017