Eating Healthy for Kids - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

Eating Healthy for Kids

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"A couple cheese sticks, juice, chocolate milk,” as Quinn Dyson rattles off his typical snacks, Registered Dietician, Karen Fisher takes notes. “Those are all great foods,” she acknowledges; good choices especially for a growing and active eight-year-old.

"I do gymnastics, skiing, soccer and swimming." Even at his age, Quinn is curious about how best to fuel his body for all the activities he loves, which is why he is meeting with Karen for some nutritional advice.

Karen opened Nutrition Connection on Sierra Rose Drive to help a wide range of people, from super healthy kids, like Quinn, to folks struggling with medical conditions like diabetes and obesity. "It's amazing to me that kids, even as early as age two, can have plaquing in their arteries related to heart disease." She says childhood obesity wasn't nearly the issue it is today two decades ago and she blames, in part, all the time kids spend with technology. So, along with getting active, what should our kids be eating?

A balanced diet is best – complete with veggies/fruits, whole grains, protein and dairy.

It is important for Karen to show clients appropriate portion sizes for those food groups, too. She pulls out plastic samples to give her clients a clear visual of serving sizes. She has tips for parents as we prepare to pack up the school lunches again. Karen suggests limiting preservative-laden lunch meat. Cook your own chicken or turkey breast for sandwiches, instead." From a cancer prevention standpoint, no lunch meat is really the recommendation." With peanut butter banned at many schools, you might opt for almond, soy nut or cashew butter. She says tuna is a good alternative, too. Karen also monitors saturated fats – especially found in cheeses, red meats, even coconut oil. "It's very popular. Coconut oil is a fad food right now."

And then there's the ‘S’ word - sugar!

Karen says a small cookie or two should be the daily limit for refined sugar. "Truly 100 to 150 calories a day." Moderation is key and variety is best when it comes to feeding our kids. Karen even told Quinn a bag of chips from time to time can't hurt and don't skimp on the chocolate milk, either. "Chocolate milk is a great fuel for after sports. It has carbs to refuel the glycogen storage and replete the protein your body needs to build muscle."

Quinn's glad to know he's on the right track to power through his day.

To learn more about Nutrition Connection, log onto Karen also has tips for cutting excess sugar out of your child’s diet, just click on this line.

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