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Six healthy food groups for kids

February 6, 2019
Kiki Angelos , MOV Parent

You are probably thinking that healthier eating is an idea that will not work with your children because most children love pizza, cookies, potato chips, soft drinks and candy and all those are items that is hard to get them to avoid. There is a lot of materials out there to explain what and how adults should eat, but very little for the parents that are trying to improve their children's eating habits.

However, there is a way and it is called "THE HEALTHY SIX"

The six groups of foods are

1. Fruits

2. Veggies

3. Meat

4. Dairy products

5. Whole grain foods

6. Unsaturated Oils

These are foods that are healthy and important that you should add to your child's diet.

FRUIT Children should eat a variety of fruits during the week with fresh fruits being the best. If you buy canned fruits, make sure it is not packed in a sugar type syrup. You should avoid serving sweetened juices to your children whenever possible.

VEGGIES A great rule to follow is to select veggies with a variety of colors - dark green veggies like spinach and broccoli and orange colored veggies such as carrots and sweet potatoes are all rich in many nutrients and high in fiber content. Tomatoes and bell peppers are all high in vitamin C and should be made plentiful. Beans are another good deal of fiber and you should try serving different beans such as kidney beans, black beans and pinto beans along with green beans. Eat a variety of veggies which are low in calories, high in fiber and healthy.

MEATS Proteins are also very important but try to limit processed meats like hot dogs, sausage and lunch meats.

DAIRY Milk, yogurt and cheese provide calcium for strong bones and teeth. Two or three dairy products should be consumed everyday for children.

WHOLE GRAINS Loaded with high fiber making them a must in every diet. Whole wheat pasta, whole grain cereals and whole grain breads are highly suggested.

OILS The latest reports recommend pure olive oils.

Until next month, "Eat Healthy!"

Kids' Wraps

4 teaspoons Dijon honey mustard

2 8-inch fat-free flour tortillas

2 slices reduced-fat American cheese, cut in half

4 ounces thinly sliced fat-free oven-roasted turkey breast

1/2 cup shredded carrot

3 romaine lettuce leaves, washed and torn into bite-sized pieces

Spread 2 teaspoons mustard evenly over 1 tortilla. Top with half of cheese, turkey, carrot and lettuce. Roll up tortilla, cut in half. Repeat with remaining ingredients.

Tropical Chicken Salad Pockets

3 cups diced cooked chicken

1 can pineapple chunks in juice, drained, juice reserved

3 green onions, thinly sliced

2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

tropical dressing

4 pocket breads, cut in half

lettuce leaves

In bowl, place chicken, pineapple, green onions and cilantro. Pour dressing over chicken mixture and toss to mix. Line each pocket bread with lettuce leaf; fill with chicken salad.

Tropical Dressing: In small bowl, mix together 1/2 cup reduced-fat mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon lime juice, 1 tablespoon reserved pineapple juice, 1 teaspoon sugar, 1 teaspoon curry powder, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon grated lime peel.

Mandarin Orange Chicken

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

1/2 cup finely chopped onion

1/2 cup orange juice

2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger

1 teaspoon sugar

2 teaspoons cornstarch

1/4 cup cold water

1 can mandarin orange segments, drained

2-3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro

2 cups hot cooked rice

Pound chicken slightly between 2 pieces of plastic wrap to 1/4-inch thickness. Broil chicken 7-8 minutes on each side. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Spray medium nonstick saucepan with cooking spray and heat until hot. Add onion, cook and stir about 5 minutes. add orange juice, ginger and sugar. Bring to a boil. Combine cornstarch and water in small bowl until smooth; add to onion mixture. Boil 1 minute, stirring. Stir in orange segments and cilantrol. Serve chicken over rice, top with sauce.

Kiki Angelos is a food columnist for the Parkersburg News and Sentinel.



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