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The UK is a SNACKING nation. We love to snack! As a consumer, you're not alone in the struggle to navigate the world of snacks for healthy options, let alone healthy snacks your kids will actually eat. Unfortunately, many of the snacks marketed as “child-friendly” are packed with sugar, salt, and other unhealthy ingredients that guarantee cheap prices and a long shelf life.
Did you know that 65% of UK children’s diets are Ultra Processed Foods 🤯 which are defined as foods containing ‘substances never or rarely used in kitchens, or classes of additives whose function is to make the final product palatable or more appealing’. Most of these cleverly packaged foods don’t even look bad at first glance, but when you look at the nutritional labels and ingredients it’s another story.
Bottom-line, we know that the kid’s aisle does a great marketing job, that being a parent is tiring and that convenience packs are oh so convenient for your handbag, diaper bag, car or whatever, but we are teaching our children to like very sweet and processed foods. These highly palatable foods are starting a cycle where brains are stimulated by processed foods, making them crave them even more.
What is even worse, are the long-term consequences of feeding children a diet high in ultra-processed foods.
Did you know that a child’s microbiome is malleable and forms by the time he or she turns 5? This sets up our children’s health for a lifetime of health. Their gut microbiome is influenced by genetics, environment, diet and more. Biombe, a next generation gut microbiome test for children, says that “ the foods children eat have a direct relationship to the diversity of the bacteria in their gut, which signals the immune system. You can influence your child’s gut bacteria in part by changing diets. Learning how to feed and nurture your children’s microbiomes can have positive outcomes on their health.” Tiny Health, another child gut microbiome test, produced great content on Instagram if you want to know more.
Digestive issues, constipation, psoriasis or eczema, diabetes, obesity, mental and dental health problems are just a few of the issues associated with consuming processed foods – or rather nutrient poor foods. The problem is that these processed foods can contain up to 50% less nutrients compared to fresh, unprocessed foods, so you are only providing your child’s growing and developing brains and body with half the nutrients it needs to function properly.
So, what really happens? We could not find as study on children, but found this account of a UK doctor swapping his 80% unprocessed food diet for 80% ultra-processed food, the results from a single month are scary! Have a look at the video that got 4.3 Million views to see how his physique, weight and blood work changed in just 30 days.
The Thrive Kids Clinic, an advanced child and teen nutrition Clinic in London, speaks about eating patterns being established in childhood and extending into adulthood. Childhood is a critical time when food preferences and eating habits are formed, with long-lasting effects on health. So, here are a few tips.
Finally, Sunna had a look for healthiest salty snacks in the supermarket as on-the-go time can be challenging.
Here's a quick summary:
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It will be children’s week on our socials.
We will feature videos on healthy bread for fussy eaters who don’t like crust, healthy breakfast options with Sunna's son, a review of the kids porridge aisle and more. We have received lots of questions over the last few months about kids’ nutrition. If you still have questions, send Sunna an email on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ever taken the time to check out chemicals hiding under your sink, NOPE, we don’t blame you either. Out of site out of mind, right? Household favourite Fairy Liquid, been around since the 1950's carries a hazard warning sign stating "harmful to aquatic life with long lasting effects," this is the stuff we wash our dishes with EVERY DAY!
We all know that brushing our teeth is important for good oral hygiene, but our mouths are so much more than our shiny smile. The gums and your whole oral eco system are linked to the rest of your body, from cardiovascular to brain health.
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