Reduce Your and Your Child's Screen Time

How many hours per day do you think you spent looking at a screen? That includes the television, your computer and your phone. That's a lot of time if you work at a desk job behind a computer! And if your children are old enough to have cellphones, the amount of time spent on social media and texting can be overwhelming.

Reducing screen time can help you and your family spend more quality time together, sleep better and help with focus and concentration.

Below we've run through some easy tips to help you and your children reduce their screen time and live fuller, healthier lives.

1. Dinner Time

Use dinner as a time to catch up as a family. Sit around the kitchen table and talk. No cell phones, no TV. This can also help with mindful eating. Instead of mindlessly consuming your food and not paying attention/overeating, speaking in between bites can help you slow down and realize fullness sooner.

2. After School Activities

The #1 past time of kids after school is TV. Change that statistic and have the kids go outside and play games. If the weather isn't great, create inside games - board games can be fun for the whole family!

3. Two Hours Before Bedtime

Make a family rule, no screens before bedtime. This is a time to get homework done, visit with the family, clean your room, get ready for the next day or pick up a new book. This readies the mind for bed and is a great habit to develop! The blue light from your phone or TV can cause you to stay awake and have a sleepless night.

4. No TV's in the Bedroom

To monitor your child's consumption of TV, it's best to keep the TV in common areas only. You don't need your child falling asleep to the TV and making a habit of it. Again the light and noise from the TV causes disrupted rest.


The Exercise People Forget About

Walking!

Believe it or not, walking is GREAT exercise for all and an underrated form of exercise.

Certified exerciser physiologist, John Ford explains walking as a form of exercise for NBC News. 

“In fact, walking is the suggested workout over running for many people. For example, those with knee, ankle and back problems and also for people who are overweight to obese. Walking is a lower impact exercise and can be done for longer periods of time.”

Walking is a fun and easy way to get the entire family out and moving. Take the dog out for a walk around the block after dinner. Make it an opportunity to catch up with the family and step away from screens. Feeling adventurous on the weekend? Pick a hike or a beach to walk around and stop for a healthy picnic you pack up beforehand!

Some key benefits too walking:

  • improve your mood (yay endorphins!)
  • strengthen your bones and muscles
  • improve balance and coordination
  • maintain a healthy weight

One step at a time is the way to a happier, healthier lifestyle!


Easy Snacks for Kids

It's after school, you've got carpool and now you've got a car full of hungry kids. Be the hero and bring the best snacks with you in the car that are easy to make/pack up, taste delicious AND are healthy!

Popcorn

Pop your corn at home on the stove with avocado oil or sunflower oil. This is much  healthier than buying the bagged stuff and it tastes amazing! Add salt or your favorite seasonings.

PB & J Apples

Core and slice some green apples with peanut or almond butter and jelly in between two slices. YUM

Fruit Bites

Check out this simple and easy recipe for a fun way to get more fruit in your children's diet.

Roasted Chickpeas

Roast this protein packed snack in the oven with your favorite seasoning. These crunchy bites are super satisfying!

Homemade Crackers

This is a fun recipe you can have the kids help you with! Use your favorite cookie cutter to make all sorts of fun shapes and sizes! Store in an air tight container to last through the week.

Chocolate Raspberries

An easy and yummy dessert snack is stuffing raspberries with your favorite morsels - chocolate, caramel, white chocolate - or mix them all!


How to Sneak More Veggies into Your Diet

Fruits and vegetables are an important part of a healthy diet. We get it though, sometimes veggies just don't sound very good or maybe you or your kids don't like the taste. That's okay! We've come up with a short list of our favorite ways to include more of the good stuff in your meals! Better ways to prepare them or even mask the taste. Let us know what you do to get your full servings in each day!

Smoothies

One of our favorite ways to mask the taste of bitter kale or spinach, is to throw a handful into a fruit smoothie. The sweetness of blueberries, raspberries or strawberries hide the taste of any veggies you blend in. A perfect nutritious breakfast for everyone in the family!

Zoodle it

We've mentioned this in past articles but one of our favorite ways to eat your veggies is to make them into noodles! Swap out zucchini noodles for regular noodles or mix them together to still cut carbs. We also love zoodling cucumbers, carrots, onions or any of your favorite veggies to make salads more fun!

Snacks

Make after school favorites with a healthy twist. Baking kale in the oven with a little olive oil, salt and pepper makes a crispy delicious treat instead of greasy, fatty potato chips. Another option, is fries! Chop carrots, zucchini, or green beans into healthy fries by covering lightly with bread crumbs and baking in the oven.

Soups

Pureeing vegetables is an easy way to sneak in more veggies. Use tomato, squash or cauliflower to create some awesome healthy lunch or dinner soup options.

Dessert!

And of course the best for last! There are so many amazing recipes out there for dessert that has a veggie base. A few of our favorites are peanut butter avocado brownies, chocolate carrot and squash cupcakes, and zucchini chocolate cake.


Busy Parent? Learn to Love Your Crockpot

The Crockpot is literally the most amazing piece of equipment you can own. It saves you time and the food always turns out PERFECT. It's one of those things you can prep the night before then, set it and forget it when you leave to drop the kids off at school and head to work. You get to come home to a house that smells amazing and a dinner that is ready to be devoured! We listed out some of our family favorites. Don't own a crockpot? You can buy one that's super affordable here or a higher end one here. 

Sweet Potato and Quinoa Turkey Chili

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Crockpot Honey Sesame Chicken

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Slow Cooker Beef and Broccoli

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Tortellini Minestrone Soup 

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Slow Cooker Overnight Oatmeal

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Slow Cooker Veggie Burrito Bowls 

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