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Healthy Eating Tips from Dr. McCord

Dr. McCord invited us into her kitchen to share some healthy eating tips she uses with her family that includes Kate, age 6; Reed, age 3; and her husband Blake.

  • Start children early on a good variety of nutritious foods like vegetables, fruits, and fish. If you start children on healthy foods when they are toddlers, they will crave these foods instead of chicken nuggets and junk food.
  •  I make one meal for my family and don’t prepare a separate meal for the children. I encourage everyone to eat the same thing and don’t give them another option.
  • We only have milk or water at our house. I limit juice and soda sparingly. Soda adds tons of sugar to a child’s diet.
  •  If I want my children to eat healthy, I have to lead by example. I‘ve given up diet coke and don’t bring junk food into the house on a regular basis. If candy or chips are in the house, I will eat them! I don’t expect my children to have more self-control than me.
  •  When my children were toddlers, I would puree vegetables like squash, pumpkin and beets and add them to their favorite foods! Some good foods to hide veggies are spaghetti sauce, yogurt, mac and cheese, and pancakes. There are a lot of recipes in Jessica Sienfield’s book “Deceptively Delicious”
  • Fresh food can be expensive. I like to buy in bulk and either freeze it or put food in smaller containers. Fresh fruits and vegetables are best, but frozen is good too and lasts longer.
  • How did I get my kids to eat fish? I started with fish sticks, then breaded tilapia, now they eat broiled fish fillets, crab legs, and all kinds of fish. (Tip: Store bought bread crumbs have all kinds of added ingredients. Keep the heels of your bread in the freezer and make your own bread crumbs by pulsing in the food processor for a few seconds).
  • Like most busy families, I need my food to be convenient. On Sunday, my down day, I chop all of our vegetables for the week and put them in separate containers. I buy large containers of plain yogurt and hummus and split them into individual serving containers with fruit or veggies. I also boil eggs and sometimes grill a chicken to add to our salads. I keep cheese sticks and ham rolls in individual containers for the children.
  • September 2015 Healthy Families Guide

    I do love fall y’all but I’m not ready to say goodbye to summer just yet. Too bad we can’t hold on to the people & moments we love a bit longer. As I write this letter, I’m reminded of our good friend who lost his father unexpectedly this week. I’m also reflecting on how my sweet grandmother will celebrate her 100th birthday next month. These life events make me grateful for the time we have but they also make me ask myself, “What steps am I taking to stay healthy & how am I teaching my kids healthy habits?” Not that I’m aspiring to live to be 100 years old, but I hope to be a grandparent one day & soak up more memories with my loved ones.

    This marks our 5th year of bringing you this special edition featuring our Healthy Families Guide sponsored by MANA Medical Associates. MANA, Medical Associates of Northwest Arkansas, is a group of local independent physicians working together to provide exceptional care for the people of NWA. Their clinics encompass women’s health, pediatrics, chiropractic care, family medicine, urgent care, psychiatry, sports medicine & more. By sponsoring this issue, they’re ensuring we have the best resource in our hands for quality health care. Thank you, MANA, for 5 years of good health!

    Our special thanks also go to Dr. Virginia McCord of the Northwest Arkansas Pediatric Clinic, a MANA Clinic! She shared her home, her family & her healthy eating tips (page 7) with us for this issue. Her adorable children, Kate & Reed, were a delight to photograph for the cover & not only could name nearly every vegetable pictured, but also had eaten them! Some of which they were quick to share as their favorites. Clearly, these kids have learned from their parents how to eat healthy.

    What we love most about Dr. McCord’s tips is that they are practical. Any of us can use them. Don’t like eating vegetables yourself? Purée them & add them to the foods she suggests. As the saying goes, “don’t knock it until you’ve tried it”. Or as my friend says, “don’t yuck my yum!” Maybe you can’t bear the thought of eating vegetables every day. Try drinking water instead of soft drinks. Today I jumped on the trampoline holding our nearly 30 pound son. My legs only lasted about 10 minutes but he made exercise fun with his giggles & “whoas”! Making one healthy change can make a big difference in the way we look & feel.

    Kid’s Directory of NWA will celebrate 13 years in business next month! It’s a joy working with our phenomenal team & providing the highest quality family resource for NWA. And Cat Hoyle, our Creative Director, has been making our magazine beautiful for nearly all those years! Her creative talents blow me away. She’s also one of the most generous & kind people I know. I count her as a huge blessing in my life. Thank you, Cat, for your friendship & for being the easiest person on the planet to work with!

    Wishing you healthy, fun memories with your family!

    September Healthy Families Issue 2014 Sponsored by MANA Medical Associates

    The first day of FALL is September 23rd!! Anyone else counting down the days until then?! September is my favorite month, not because of football (gasp!) but because I love to see the leaves change color & enjoy the coolness of the weather. It’s also the month I celebrate my wedding anniversary so it holds precious memories for me. I confess I’m not a health nut but I do want to enjoy lots of years with my man & my kids so this Healthy Families Issue challenges me to be more proactive with my health. I hope it does the same for you! You can find these ads starting on page 8 with the quick-reference guide feature on pages 48-57.

    We are honored once again to have MANA Medical Associates sponsor this issue! MANA’s mission is to improve quality of life by providing compassionate, comprehensive, quality healthcare. With over ​50 years of experience & over ​80 physicians & providers including family medicine, pediatricians, internal medicine & specialists, you’re sure to find ​excellent care for your ​family’s ​medical needs. ​ Learn more about MANA at mana.md. You can find their ads this month on pages 8-10.

    MANA also sponsored our September Cover Kid Contest. It’s an absolute blast for us every year reading the kids’ responses! This year we asked, “What fun things do you do with your family to stay healthy?” Our adorable winner responded, “we go wimming!” We love “kid-isms”! Oliver is active in other sports but has excelled at swimming this year as a 2 year old. Way to go Oliver!!

    I can’t close out this letter without saying a HUGE THANK YOU to our loyal advertisers & readers! I know I can speak for our entire staff when I say it’s our pleasure to bring you this resource guide every month. Our goal is to provide the highest quality family resource & be the most valuable connection between our advertisers & readers. Please remember to always tell our advertisers you saw them in Kid’s Directory!

    Happy Fall Y’all!​