Common Meals Mothers And You Can Make Healthier
By: Feli Musing
With Mother’s Day approaching, one can’t help but marvel at the women who birth or raise children to be the people they are. To be alive is because of a mother. These women give of their bodies, their spirits, and their time to nurture children. Nourishing children’s bodies with good eats is one major aspect of mothering. Occasionally, it’s a great idea to tweak some of these familiar good eats for a healthier lifestyle. As a penny pincher, changing it up a bit doesn’t have to be more costly either. Trust me! Here are some childhood favorites that I’ve revamped for moms and all to enjoy.
1. Sugary Breakfast Cereals
Many pre-packaged breakfast cereals (Random thought, but it seems that every packaged cereal is “Cornflakes” if you’re Caribbean or of Caribbean descent) are as readily accessible as they are sugary. Don’t be fooled. some of those pre-packaged oatmeals can have tons of sugar as well. So, read those nutritional facts, marvelous moms and humans. I don’t know about you, but my childhood self wasn’t exactly eating the recommended serving size either (insert guilty smile here). This packed on the empty calories and the sugar for a hyper burst of energy, which quickly ended in a crash. Not so fun during an exam or work hours.
To avoid chowing down on cereals laced with unnecessary sugars, opt for an oatmeal or granola with no added sugar. Utilize other grains such as quinoa and amaranth for other good options. Stay away from the crash after a cereal and milk sugar rush. The key is to control how much sugar goes into your cereal, so buying unsweetened is key. There are some quality reduced sugar options, but replace the processed white sugar with fruit such as bananas, berries, or raisins to give your body smarter fuel.
2. Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches
This one may break some hearts, but sweetened peanut butter with sweetened jelly and bread is a carb fest. This one is an easy fix. Replace the sweetened peanut butter with an all natural unsweetened peanut butter without palm oil or other stabilizing agent for a change that is just as delicious as the original. Swap out the jelly or jam with a fruit like banana or apple to eliminate the processed sugar from the mix. My mom and I used to love eating peanut butter and banana sandwiches, but as we get older (Well me more than her), we try to limit our carb intake. Instead of regular old white bread, you can use an Ezekiel sprouted bread. You can also ditch the bread all together and use your fruits or healthful vegetables like celery as the vessel for your peanut butter goodness. This way, you get the taste without the sugar rush.
3. Fried Chicken and mashed potatoes
Chicken is an amazing source of protein! Instead of frying it in hundreds of calories of oil, you can bake or grill the chicken. Flavor is what most people enjoy about fried chicken, so let your seasonings shine without the extra fat and grease. My mother has proven that this method of cooking chicken is quite delicious. As for mashed potatoes, use water instead of milk. Either drastically reduce or completely remove the butter to reduce the cholesterol in the dish. It will still be flavorful and creamy. Don’t forget to portion control those potatoes. Afterall, they are a starchy vegetable. If you prefer the taste of sweet potatoes, do the same things and make sweet potato mash instead.
4. Cheeseburgers and french fries
Cheeseburgers and french fries are easy to prepare, and even easier to purchase. However, from the bun to the fried potatoes, one fast food burger combo can add up in the calorie department. Mom means well, but the fast food giants aren’t always thinking from a mother’s point of view. Ditch the bun for some greens. Wrapping burgers in greens like lettuce is an artform which will easily shave off some of the calories from your usual burger bun. I personally don’t like american cheese on my burgers so I usually go without cheese anyway. As for the french fries, replace the fried potatoes with a baked potato.
As my mother would say, nyam yuh food (eat your food). Enjoy the flavor and nutritional glow up that incorporating these tips can provide. Your mother or motherly figure did not raise a bland food eating fool. Until next time, remember, you’re in control!