Nutrition is not about My Plate or the Food Pyramid

girls smiling

It comes as no shock that one-third of adult Americans are obese. Billboards promote fast food, and processed foods. Television commercials for sugary foods are targeted to children. Over 78-million Americans struggle with obesity and metabolic disease processes associated with obesity. A growing number of people are being diagnosed with autoimmune conditions. This is why Paleo on the Go wanted to take the time to to educate children in our own community about healthy eating.  

POTG in community

What’s in a bag of Doritos?

We spoke to over 200 children in two days! We were quite surprised that many of them did know the difference between a healthy snack, vs a snack loaded with sugar and chemicals. A number of the children could not tell us what a healthy drink option was, or know how to find the ingredient list on the back of processed food packages. We asked two children to read the ingredient list from the back of a bag of doritos. We asked for another volunteer to compare the ingredient list on the back of Barre Apple Chips.

doritos vs bare Chips

Here’s what they found:

The Doritos had 25 ingredients, several of which could not be easily pronounced. When asked what Monosodium Glutamate or Disodium Inosinate was all the kids gave a blank stare… rightfully so! Our third volunteer began reading the list from the apple chips which only had two ingredients, organic apples, and organic cinnamon. The children seemed to easily grasp how important it is to read labels, and know exactly what they are putting into their body. We also took the time to explain the importance of eating fresh foods that do not come with ingredients.

Healthy Drinks for Kids

Although the children knew soda was bad for them, most of the children were unaware that juice was not a healthy option. We took the time to explain the only drink they really need is water.   The kids learned about the sugar content of fruit juices. We had fun getting the children to try and pronounce the word “kombucha.” This made for a great exercise, and we included it in the end as a giveaway question!

kids bag square

All in all, we believe the children learned a great deal about healthy eating and nutrition much of which they did not know before. Paleo On The Go will definitely continue to educate children in our community, and hopefully help to create healthy habits that will last a lifetime!