This carrot and coconut curry soup was the first recipe I prepared after getting back from our summer vacation. I couldn’t WAIT to put a healthy meal into my belly, and I also wanted to recreate some flavors from vacation – hence the coconut. (I might have had a pina colada or two).
You’ve probably heard the expression “eat the rainbow.” It’s a phrase we dietitians use to communicate the importance of eating a variety of colorful produce. On our vacation, we ate a lot of color. However, these colors weren’t made by nature.
We were staying with extended family which was fun, but it also meant there was a wide variety of “fun” foods at our fingertips 24/7: cookies, chips, soda…the list goes on. My kids were requesting chips for breakfast and soda for snacks. Fruits and veggies had no chance.
It reminded me of the study that showed a huge barrier for eating fruits and veggies is competition. Doesn’t it feel like the seasons of summer brings more competition for healthy foods? Chips from the pool snack bar, snow cones at camp, it seems fun foods are everywhere. If we want to strike a better balance for our kids, one strategy is to offer healthy foods like fruits and vegetables…solo. For example, we could offer fruits and vegetables as a snack.
Last night, my kids watched a show while I made dinner. Since I was already chopping carrots, I handed out carrot sticks. It’s amazing how many more carrots, bell peppers, or snap peas get gobbled up when there are no other foods around.
I’m hoping this simple hack of eliminating the competition will help your family find a bit more balance in what’s left of summer – and that the power of produce prevails.