Healthy Eating Tips for Families from Ann Liebeskind, MD

Ann Liebeskind, MD, clinical lipidologist, Affinity Health System

You’ve probably been hearing a lot about eating healthy and staying active. Our First Lady, Michelle Obama, has even made it a national priority. There are so many ways we can eat a little better and move a little more. Whether you are ready for a big change or a few smaller ones, now is a great time to do it! Here are just a few ideas for kids and their parents to get started toward their own healthy goals.

Make fruits and vegetables a part of every meal or snack – Have you heard of rutabagas or loquats? See what you can discover on the next trip to the grocery store or farmer’s market. Or, if keeping fresh foods in the house all week is tough with a busy schedule, it’s ok to go frozen. Your grocery store’s frozen food section carries veggies you can steam in minutes in the microwave, often right in their own bags! No preparation, planning or clean-up required! Frozen fruit is also low-cost, easy-to-find and great for smoothies.

Start the day with a great breakfast that doesn’t make you late – You already know that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but that it can be hard to fit it in on busy school mornings. You can make and freeze your own whole grain waffles and pancakes on the weekend, then defrost them quickly in the toaster. Add fruit for added flavor and nutrition. Cookie cutters can create fun shapes to add a smile to the morning. A piece of fruit or whole grain cereals are also quick and healthy choices.

Make your own designer drinks – Replace any unhealthy drinks with your own unique creation. So, you don’t like plain water? Grab a pitcher of water and experiment with flavors by adding slices of lemon or grapefruit. Want smoothies without the brand-name price? Get out the blender and add your favorite fruits to some ice.

Make it a team (family) effort – Meals made together and eaten at home can be simple and fun. Most importantly, they build stronger families. Why not take a family walk or bike ride after dinner, too?

Submitted by Ann Liebeskind, MD, a clinical lipidologist with Affinity Health System ( specializing in the care of patients with difficult cholesterol or lipid management needs. She has a special interest in preventive cardiology.

Dr. Liebeskind earned her medical degree from the University of Wisconsin Medical School and completed her residency at the University of Kentucky Hospital. She is board-certified in internal medicine and pediatrics, and is among the first Diplomates of the American Board of Clinical Lipidology.

This entry was posted in For Parents/Families, For Students/Teachers, Nutrition, Tips. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply