One Sporty Mother Principles

Two girls of different ages makeing yoga
Workout with your children – it’s good for you both!

Below are some thoughts and principles that I like to try and apply to our family nutritional intake and generally thump the children with these thoughts as often as I can…….

  1. Food is not food when it comes through the window of your car. ‘Nuf said.
  2. Sportsmen and women need a calorie rich diet. But a calorie from a chicken breast or an avocado is significantly more beneficial than a calorie from cheap chocolate or a bag of crisps.
  3. Beware food fads – it may be fashionable to Clean Eat or go Gluten Free but unless you are one of the 1% that has a genuine food intolerance, it is not a balanced diet for you and definitely not for a child athlete. Not eating complex carbs, protein or calcium rich foods is unwise and poses a risk to your long term health. Ignore this bullshit and don’t pass these ridiculous ideas onto your children.
  4. Vegetarian v “Normal” – try not to segregate the two – it’s all FOOD.
  5. Limit your plate size and once you’ve served your portion, try not to go back for seconds.
  6. If you want a treat, cook it yourself. You are far more likely to eat less and of a better quality if you are, for example, cooking breaded chicken from scratch yourself with quality ingredients.
  7. If you want a spread on bread eat butter or hummus – margarine and friends are the devils work. It is not a sin and the flavour is immeasurably better. Just don’t overdo it.
  8. If you have to shop in a supermarket (and I regularly do) stick to the outer edges of the building where the fresh stuff is and avoid the processed stuff in the centre. But if you can, head to the farmers market – fresh, tasty and you ditch the plastic.
  9. Treat food as medicine when appropriate – eating the right way is so much more effective than popping pills i.e. eating local honey will help you with summer pollen allergies.
  10. In the words of food author and nutritionist Michael Pollan, “If it came from a plant, eat it; if it was made in a plant, don’t”. If you can’t pronounce what’s in the ingredients list, you probably shouldn’t be eating it.