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What’s In Your Pantry? Nutritionist Weighs in on their ‘go-to’ Kids’ Snacks

(After the fruit and veggie platters)

by Bonnie Wisener
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Your kids have been at school all day. They are barely in the door after school and the first thing you hear is “why did you put _______ (fill in healthy snack here) into my lunchbox? I told you not to give that to me for lunch. I didn’t eat it, and I am starving”. I have 3 teenaged daughters now, but when they were little, I saw this as an opportunity to stuff them up with fruits and vegetables.

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After school was a time when they were so hungry they would eat almost anything I gave them. The trick was that it had to be ready and waiting for them on my kitchen table at that exact moment. So, that’s how fruits and vegetables (yes, vegetables!) became a successful after school snack. Ta-da! Nope. Story doesn’t end there, check out the title of this article…

Immediately upon the last bite, they would descend on my pantry, or my counter for fresh baked goods, chips of any variety, popcorn, etc. I have to admit that I was mostly OK with this. Balance. At least I knew that they were getting the fruits and veggies in. However, over the years, as they got older and began to spend more time out of our home, I began to be a little more discerning about the snack food that I would prepare and make available in our house.
I am a huge fan of taking recipes or foods that we already like and “shifting” them to healthier versions. Over the years, I have begun to bake with almond flour and coconut flour. I have switched from baking with processed cane sugar to mostly maple syrup or coconut sugar, and in smaller quantities. In my pantry, we still have varieties of snack foods but they look completely different than they did before. As a holistic nutritionist, I believe in balance. I also believe wholeheartedly in reducing our exposure to harmful food additives and chemicals. Therefore, when I do buy packaged foods (and we do!), I have switched some of our favourites to much healthier brands with ‘cleaner’ ingredients.

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