Saturday, 11 February 2012

Don't tell my children what to eat!

It's been a while, but it's time once again for me to have a little rant, so please excuse me!

13 Year old Miss Ony, has been on a healthy eating regime since the start of the year. At first, I was OK with her taking control of her own food intake and reducing the amount of fat and sugar she ate (although being veggie, I'm sure her intake was far lower than the average child anyway) but she started getting more strict and cut out snacks, sweets and chocolate altogether.

She also started exercising more than usual, looking at the calorie contents of the foods she was eating and being very self critical of the way she looked. All quite normal things for a teenage girl to do, maybe? But it was making her unhappy and snappy.

Anyway, everything came to a head and we had a heart to heart chat about what was going turns out that one of her teachers had been spouting on about how bad it was to eat chocolate and fatty foods, and how everyone should exercise more. As a teacher of teenage children, I think she should have known better and realised how influential her pep talks about healthy eating could be, especially to sensitive and intelligent young women like Miss Ony. 

Yes, most of us parents want our children to eat healthily and know about the nutritional value of different foods. T
here is obviously a time and place for schools to teach children about such things during the appropriate lessons; But please don't tell my children that any food is bad. Salad may be healthy, but we can't live on salad alone - we need a combination of carbohydrate, protein, fats, sugars and God forbid, even some salt!

The lovely Gok Wan's new TV series
Gok's Teens: The Naked Truth addresses some of the issues that Miss Ony is going though at the moment, so we'll be watching the programmes with interest and discussing the subjects raised. We're all big Gok fans, so it was really good timing to see the first programme this week. 

Miss Ony is now allowing herself to eat a little bit of chocolate when she fancies it, which is making us all a little happier! Oh and by the way, if you're reading this Miss Ony, you are beautiful just the way you are!
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  1. Well said! Sometimes the school has helped us with positive eating information (my eldest has taken on the five a day advice quite well) but if they were to start identifying and shunning "bad" foods the kids just wouldn't get enough energy to get through the day! I'm sure my youngest is marked as a "bad lunch box" kid, but they don't know about the healthy, mostly vegan, cooked meal that waits for him at tea time. I'm actually looking forward to this inevitable run in!

    Good on you, with a dash of chocolate, Miss Ony.

  2. There are recent studies that show fatty foods not to be the problem at all. As the information keeps changing every few years I don't know how anyone can confidently say what is right and what is wrong (except for obvious junk food). The most we can do - as you say, is eat a balanced diet and enjoy our food.

  3. Thanks for both of your comments.
    Good luck with your anticipated run in, whenever it happens Jacqui!

  4. I am starting to get little comments from my 9 yo. Her body is changing and her hips are rounding out a bit. She is by no means, fat and I do try and explain we are all different. Told her she just needs to eat healthy with some treats and keep on jumping around like a lunatic and she will be fine. I got a grin and hug and off she ran, til the next time a 'friend' makes a nasty comment ....

  5. Sorry to hear that. Girls (and women) really can be each others' worst enemies when it comes to body image.


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