Do NOT Copy

Do NOT Copy

An End to the Diet Wars?

I have shared a little of our family's diet struggles with you before, but things have been going downhill fast. I put the whole family on the same eating patterns so Son wouldn't feel left out and we could support each other with our healthy eating habits. Despite several trips to the dietitian, Son was back to his old over-eating tricks. I had even portioned out all of the snacks into sandwich baggies to keep us from eating too many servings at one time. (I'm just too darn cheap to spend all of that extra money on the packaging materials for those ones that come individually prepackaged.) He just wasn't getting the fact that he should only have so much of a certain type of food per day. How do you keep track of all that you've eaten anyway? I guess I probably do that kind of thing too. I mean, it's easy to look at a food pyramid and decide what you SHOULD eat. Do you actually eat that way?

I was tired of acting like a police officer and reminding him to slow down all of the time. I decided that there must be a better way of getting the family to self regulate what we are eating. We have done food journals in the past, and while they are effective they are also time consuming. There had to be something else I could do that didn't require as much work and could be done quickly.

While cleaning up my craft room the other day, my eyes landed on the left over magnet pieces I had used for blocking unused vents to reduce our heating bills. They would be perfect to use with that rusty old baking sheet that Cheesehead had insisted I throw out. Quickly, I grabbed my permanent markers so the words wouldn't smear and got to work. To make it easier to find each food group, I color coded them. I wrote the portion sizes from the food pyramid he had been given by his dietitian under the name of the food group so he'd know how many of the magnets to move after he'd eaten.

I divided the sheet into two columns. One was titled "What can I eat?" and the other "What have I eaten?". Then all he had to do was move a few magnets from one column to the other.

I even had enough scraps left to make one for my daughter too so she wouldn't feel left out. They have been using it for five days now and they haven't gotten bored with it yet OR forgotten to use it after eating. Is this idea going to keep working? I sure hope so, I haven't had to remind them of anything they can or should eat since we started using this thing. YAY!

Thank you for stopping by to chat with me. Please leave me a message, I'd love to hear your thoughts!



Kristen said...

What a great idea! My son's still little, so he's is only able to eat what I tell him, but that's one handy trick.

Corner Gardener Sue said...

Hi Cinj! What an awesome idea! You should try to patent something like that and sell it.

I remember taking our daughter to a dietician when she was young, and was told to not fix her favorite foods every day so she would eat less. We went again when she was in high school, and the woman told her she could keep eating what she eats, and just eat less. My telling her she should include fresh fruits and veggies each day was shrugged off by saying to just eat fewer funyuns for lunch. Well she ended up gaining more and more over the years, and now, at 28 has lost some of the weight, but she has a ways to go.

Thanks for commenting on my kitchen post. I am having fun, but missing my blogging. The guy we are going through has been awesome to work with. I told Larry tonight, that one can tell he loves what he does. He came by this afternoon to measure the windows and get the down payment from me.

GardenJoy4Me said...

Hi Cinj .. that is such a great and easy way to keep track ! I think it will stick with the kids for sure : )
I have a terrible problem with my son .. he eats total fast food junk (older in years so I can't "tell" him anything ?) and drinks Coke every day .. the killer is that he is THIN so he think he doesn't have a problem .. when in truth I swear he is malnourished .. then seeing that darn Dr. Oz and the affects of too much sugar in the body .. I just wanted to have a huge cry fest .. but when they reach a certain age you have no control at that point.
I wish you the best with this method .. I'm sure it will work girl !

Cinj said...

Kristen- Thanks. It works great, they don't stay that way for long...

Sue- Wow, I'm blushing. I'm not sure that anyone would want to buy it though since they're so easy to make. We eat healthy foods for the most part, they were just eating too many of them. Especially the carbs. No major results yet, but I'm guessing this should help?

Glad to hear the kitchen remodel is going well.

Joy- I was so pleased when I was struck by the idea, I sure hope it keeps working! We're trying not to eat out much anymore, but it's a real struggle. I want to get them in on helping to make dinner and learning some easy, healthy cooking habits so when they are on their own hopefully they won't go nuts on the junk foods. Time will tell. Maybe sometime (hopefully sooner rather than later) you will be able to get through to your son? Adult kids seem to take a while to realize that their parents really are just trying to help, not just be bossy.

Nola @ the Alamo said...

I like the magnetic board idea! A nice visual reminder of what food I can still have; hope it works for you.

Lola said...

That's a great idea Cinj. My son became diabetic when he was 15. He monitored his own food intake & also what he could/couldn't eat. He's now almost 48, went through loosing some toe bones, went through dialysis, had a double transplant {pancreas & kidney} over 4 yrs ago. He's doing great, no longer diabetic.
Blessings abound.
Sticking with something you need to will pay off.
I'm happy you found something that will work.

Jan (Thanks For Today) said...

I hope your ideas will help everyone gear up in the right direction. It isn't an easy road for you I'm sure. I know how hard it is for us to eat healthy. VERY. Either the fresh veggies have gone bad, or there just aren't any in the house! Or, my husband sabbotages me buy buying ice cream, crackers/chips and cookies. Seriously, he keeps bringing this stuff home, and when its in the house, I eat it! You sound like you are working hard to help your whole family I'm rooting for ya;-)

lisa said...

What a great idea! I like that it's a visual aid like that, it would have worked well for me as a kid. Once they get used to being mindful of what they eat, it will become a habit and just get easy.

our friend Ben said...

What a great idea, Cinj! Something that's visual and interactive but not time-consuming is just perfect!

Kathleen said...

omg, you are genious. I need an idea like this for my daughter. Her Dr. just ordered blood work to test whether she was pre-diabetic or not and I am worried about portions, etc., now. Not that I wasn't before, but I have a hard time keeping track myself let alone her doing it. I hope this works out for your son.
Good luck with your house situation too.