Dieting with children is tough. I used to hate when my mother decided she wanted to “lose a few pounds” because that meant we ALL were going on a diet. In the blink of an eye every unhealthy morsel would be swept from the house and suddenly it looked like the Great Depression hit our pantry.
Here at MoscatoMom I talk a lot about Portion Control. After years of thinking that my extra weight was because of my sedentary all-I-do-is-sit-at-a-computer-all-day lifestyle, I joined a gym, committed to working out… and had very minimal results. Turns out it was what I was eating that was making me fat – and more importantly the amount that I was eating. A few minor changes and I am now quickly losing the excess weight, and feeling great.
But how much is the right amount for everyone else?
The thing about Portion Control is most people do not know exactly how much you are supposed to eat. Sure there is the whole “one serving of meat is the palm of your hand” – but how do you translate that into … say, a tune melt? Or a meatball sub? Or even more – chicken nuggets for the kids?
Certified Personal Trainer and Pilates Instructor Laura De Simone has got the answer in her new book – Serve It Up – where she talks about the proper portions for fifty of your – and your childrens – favorite meals.
“Serve it Up is the first ever book that offers meal plans and ideas for serving kid-friendly foods in a healthy manner. This book is designed to help adults feed their children popular kid foods by pairing foods in appropriate and beneficial ways. The ground-breaking idea is that children will be able to eat the foods they already eat, but do so by placing certain foods together so they are satisfying daily calories, protein, fat and carbohydrate recommendations.”
The book starts off with a graph that shows exactly how many calories people from all walks of life should consume for optimum health. The first thing I noticed is that Mike should be eating 400-600 calories MORE than me. That's like an entire meal!! The girls however, even 7 years apart, should be consuming about the same amount… though the Teen can wolf down three plates of food if I let her while I am still fighting with Midge to finish her peas.
Serve It Up is more of a “quick reference guide” than a book as it is mostly tables which show you exactly what your child should be eating based on age, gender, and activity. I like that it uses “normal” good, and focuses on portion over “low fat” food – exactly what we have been doing around the Moscato Household. With childhood obesity on the rise, I am happy to see books like this coming on the market to help parents keep their kids healthier and play an active part in their nutrition. I personally hope it helps.
I was asked to review Serve It Up but all opinions and thoughts are my own. I was given an advanced copy of the book to read and review but received no other compensation.