Remember when you were a kid, and you were told you could go out to lunch with your parents and get some fast food variation of a kid’s meal? It was like instant bliss, wasn’t it? No hovering over your brussel sprouts at the table for another lecture on healthy eating habits by Mom and Dad; oh no, this time you were going to inhale your chicken nuggets and fries as if it was similar to winning the kiddie lunch lottery. That’s just it though, a few decades ago getting fast food wasn’t a regular event, it was something that was considered a treat, so parents weren’t particularly over consumed with the nutritional content of the kids meals. In 2017, a very different tune is playing, as most households have two full time working parents, and no longer have the luxury of time to dedicate to preparing a meal every day at dinner time.
More and more kids are consuming fast foods as part of their regular diets than any generation past, and it can often be more harmful than you think. Most parents are aware that giving your child these convenient foods are not a great source of vegetables or fiber, but lots aren’t realizing the caloric intake that a child’s meal can contain.
For example, if you choose the kid’s hamburger meal that can come with a kid’s ice cream cone, fries, and milk, which totals 900 calories, you may have just given your son or daughter their daily calories for all three meals in one go without even realizing it.
The team at AOL recently highlighted some other lower calorie children’s alternatives to look into, as well as a few well known kid’s meals that are also incredibly high in calories to avoid. As consumers you assume that if food is labeled for a child size portion, that it would only equate a reasonable amount of calories for a small child to consume. Such just isn’t the case, and as a parent you have to be well informed of the calories and fat in these meals to keep your child healthy.
Many fast food establishments will have leaflets available that disclose the calories in each food item, or you can usually find them all online by doing a basic Google search. If you wish to dig a little deeper into proper nutrition for your little ones, you can always consult with a nutritionist to gain even more information on food measuring, and food preparation for the whole family.