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Inculcating Good Eating Habits in Children is a Challenge, Says Celebrity Chef

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It does take a little bit of time to get used to it, but you have to keep making these changes at home constantly.
Representational image. Pixabay

Celebrity chef Maria Goretti says it is difficult to inculcate good eating habits in children for long term benefits, especially in an age when television and internet rules.

“As a mom, I think this is the most difficult thing to do. Because no matter how hard I try and make things in air fryer, or bake them or boil with a sliver of butter, at the end, kids today have a mind of their own,” said Maria, who is married to actor Arshad Warsi.

“This is largely because of the exposure to television and internet. They know what’s going on and at home if you tell them to eat something healthy, they will ask to add some sauce or the other.

“So, as parents we must continue doing what’s right for them and eventually they will get it,” Maria told IANS in an email interview.

She also says that one should ensure nutritious intake in children from an early age.

“It should start when the child is really small and before he goes to school and checks out everyone’s tiffins. Because once they check out others’ tiffins, they come back home and start comparing,” she said.

It does take a little bit of time to get used to it, but you have to keep making these changes at home constantly.
It does take a little bit of time to get used to it, but you have to keep making these changes at home constantly.

Maria was a popular MTV VJ before she married Arshad. She also hosted TV show “Do It Sweet”, and made a special appearance in the movie “Salaam Namaste” along with her son Zeke Warsi.

Apart from a small role in a movie “Raghu Romeo” that was directed by Rajat Kapoor.

Nowadays she is busy with her cookery shows with the latest being her cooking classes at Mount Litera School International on Mother’s Day.

The school hosted an event for mothers with Maria who introduced her fellow guardians to healthy alternatives for snacks that were tasty yet nutritious.

Some of her interesting creations included Ragi pancakes made of Ragi flour, eggs, curd, and milk, giving a healthy twist to the regular flour-based pancakes.

Another unique substitute she presented was whipped soy cream as opposed to regular and calorie-laden whipped cream.

So what are the healthier option she prefers at home?

It does take a little bit of time to get used to it, but you have to keep making these changes at home constantly.
Chef. Pixabay

“I do bake pizza’s at home, and when I do so, I ensure I also make the sauce at home and not use the canned one. I ensure I put enough veggies on it and also roll out a really thin base so that flour to veggie ratio is minimum.

“I don’t like to use packed goods to put in my food and always prefer fresh food. In terms of pasta, I have switched from using the regular store-bought pasta to rice pasta which is gluten-free and really nice.

“It does take a little bit of time to get used to it, but you have to keep making these changes at home constantly.

“All mothers try to give the best to their children, but I feel mothers are somehow fighting the bigger demons of advertising against healthy food,” she said.

Also Read: Healthy Diet May Decrease the Risk of Hearing Loss in Women

Maria says that the healthiest thing you can pack for your kids is fruit and dry nuts. “It’s the healthiest and power packed food you can give them.

“Another thing I do is that I keep roasted chicken ready at home, and roll it up with chapati. I also keep Keema Kebab and hummus ready for a quick snack since that’s tasty as well as nutritious,” she said. (IANS)

Next Story

Here’s How Exposure to Instagram Can Ruin Children’s Eating Habit

The results suggest that the marketing of unhealthy foods, via vloggers' Instagram pages, increases children's immediate energy intake

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Instagram
Instagram app logo is displayed on a mobile screen in Los Angeles. VOA

Making children eat healthy food can test the patience of parents. The exposure of children to social media platforms such as photo-sharing app Instagram could make the job even tougher for them, suggests a new study.

The findings published in the journal Pediatrics showed that children who view unhealthy snack images on social media platforms are likely to consume more calories from unhealthy snacks.

“The results are supported by celebrity endorsement data, which show unhealthy food endorsements increase children’s unhealthy food intake, but healthy food endorsements have little or no effect on healthy food intake,” said researcher Anna Coate from the University of Liverpool in Britain.

The study was conducted with the aim of examining the effect of social media marketing of snack foods (healthy and unhealthy), via vloggers’ Instagram pages, on children’s snack intake.

During the study 176 children, aged between 9 and 11 years, were randomly split into three equal groups and were shown artificially created, but realistic, Instagram pages of popular vloggers (each has millions of followers).

One group was shown images of the vlogger with unhealthy snacks, the second group was shown images of the vlogger with healthy snacks and the third group was shown images of the vlogger with non-food products.

Social Media
Chiara Valenzano, right, photographs her food as she has lunch with her friend Giulia Terranova at the ‘This is not a Sushi bar’ restaurant, in Milan, Italy, Oct. 16, 2018. At the restaurant, payment can be made according to the number of Instagram followers one has. VOA

The participants’ subsequent intake of snacks (healthy and unhealthy options) were measured.

Children in the group that viewed the unhealthy snack images consumed 32 per cent more calories from unhealthy snacks specifically and 26 per cent more calories in total — from healthy and unhealthy snacks — compared with children who saw the non-food images, the findings showed.

The results suggest that the marketing of unhealthy foods, via vloggers’ Instagram pages, increases children’s immediate energy intake.

Also Read- Microsoft Working on a New Feature to Create Spreadsheets Using Visual Data

“Young people trust vloggers more than celebrities so their endorsements may be even more impactful and exploitative,” Coates said.

“Tighter restrictions are needed around the digital marketing of unhealthy foods that children are exposed to, and vloggers should not be permitted to promote unhealthy foods to vulnerable young people on social media,” she added. (IANS)