It’s time to look at our lunch for Day 2 of our REAL FOOD lunch series! Wahoo! I hope you remember that on top of including nutrient-dense food for your kids (because we want them THINKING CLEARLY!), you’ll want to avoid the big no no’s. Do you remember what those are? Yup. Let’s stay away from the hydrogenated oils (trans fats), food coloring, and MSG. Now some of you might be saying that there is a lot more to stay away from for your kids to be healthy. True, friends. BUT for anyone making those first steps towards helping their family eat healthier, I believe that these three are the main ones you need to eliminate. And it’s tough enough to tackle these three!
I want to talk real quickly about why we want to avoid trans fats. Transfats or hydrogenated oils are a saturated fat with a hydrogen attached to it. Our kids absolutely NEED fat to be healthy. I was in junior high and high school at the height of the non-fat craze, and boy did that ever mess up our health! We were told that nonfat was the best way to go, and not only were we not getting the fat our body needs, but we were adding bad oils and obscene amounts of sugar to our diet.
Yowza. Anyhow, I’ll get back on track. Your child’s brain is 60% fat, and it NEEDS fat to develop and function correctly, but it needs the RIGHT kind of fat. Not only are trans fats bad for the brain but they are going to HINDER the brain’s ability to get the good fats that it needs. So sad, right?! Children in particular need the right kinds of fat for their body to assimilate and use the vitamins and nutrients from other foods. Good fats for the win!
Let’s look at Billy. Billy’s parents are trying hard to help Billy get healthy. They are giving him fish oil or cod liver oil to help him get the Omega 3’s that he needs because they understand how important that is for Billy. But Billy is also getting fast food a couple of times a week along with a bag of chips in his lunch. Because Billy has hydrogenated oils, they are taking up the “parking spaces” in his brain where the good fats need to go. So even though Billy’s parents are trying to help him out with those fish oil pills, his body is unable to absorb them and his brain’s chemistry is being altered by these excitotoxins. Super sad, right? Let’s not do that to Billy.
Now that I’ve given you way too much information about why you don’t want hydrogenated oils in your family’s diet, let’s look at some good fats you CAN include! Avocado with some sea salt is a great source of fat that will help keep your kids full during their lunch hours. I’ve also included some raw goat cheese with some Jilz Crackers for a great snack before lunch or a fun addition to their lunch! Veggies of course! And then I cut up some peaches, but I love to get some good fat or protein along with fruit whenever possible. I took about a tablespoon of coconut cream from the top of an organic coconut milk can and just mixed in a tiny bit of honey and dropped it in the dipper for a treat! Any combo of these foods should work well for a snack or as part of a lunch. Nom nom!