We have both been fascinated with nutrition for over 20 years. Between playing sports, dancing, both of us having a science focus in our education, and ongoing research, nutrition has played a large role in our lives. Both of us have had our own struggles with disordered eating (more people suffer from this than care to admit), and we have followed several diets and nutritional approaches--Paleo, If It Fits Your Macros, Carb Cycling, Low Fat, and of course, Keto. While it is true that most of these diets are effective depending on your goals, we believe that the low carb, high fat approach is the best overall approach for us and our family.
Even within the low carb, high fat community, there is a lot of disagreement over what the best approach is, what the "rules" are (a personal pet peeve of ours), and most importantly, how to do this with the family in a way that contributes to our overall health, and is sustainable. We have updated our positions over the years based on new research and new findings with our own experimentation, and we will always continue to do so. As of right now, here is our nutrition philosophy:
1. We model the behavior we want to see.
You may have noticed that this is a recurring theme in our home. Just like every other area of our lives, we first try to focus on embodying the behaviors we wish our children to adopt. If we are responding to stress in an unhealthy way, we cannot expect our children to respond correctly. If we are making poor food choices, we cannot expect our children to choose correctly. This is our #1 priority. We accept responsibility when we make poor choices, and we have conversations about our mistakes when applicable.
2. We rely on our bodies' natural mechanisms to tell us when, what and how to eat vs. relying on a schedule, or any other external factors.
Typically, we eat dinner together as a family. This is mainly because 1) we are creatures of habit and 2) we like to get together at the table and share about our days while we eat, when possible. However, we try to let the boys' hunger to prompt us when to feed them.
3. We involve our children in the buying and cooking processes.
We do groceries together as a family. This is a great way for our children to learn more about our thought process behind the foods we choose, as well as helping them see the foods we choose. We have also
4. We use supplementation when appropriate.
5. We focus on real, whole food options as much as possible.
6. We educate our children on the ways nutrition can help us prevent or drive disease, as well as how our food choices affect our personal goals.
7. Similar to the last point, and related to mindset, we educate our children on the trade-offs between immediate gratification and delayed gratification, and how consistent good choices make us stronger in the long run.