When we think about our children’s nutrition, nothing but the best will do. We keep them away from calorific fizzy drinks, turkey twizzlers and sugary sweet treats. We mash, puree and chop vegetables into miniscule pieces before discreetly hiding them in their meals to make sure they’re getting their five a day. We’ll literally do anything we can possibly think of to make sure they’re eating right
But when it comes to our own wellbeing, as parents we are often too stretched for time and entirely focused on our kids’ diets, that we end up neglecting our own.
We may struggle to find time to exercise. Or reach for quick and convenient (though not entirely healthy) snacks and ready-meals to fill a void. Or even just cut whole food groups out of our diet entirely, in our quest to bring back our pre-baby bods (I certainly count myself in this group! #dadbod). Either way, us parents need to make sure we are valuing our own nutritional needs just as much as our kids’. As, if we aren’t on top form ourselves, it just makes our daily parenting job that much harder.
However, I was recently surprised to learn thanks to research carried out by AHDB, that there is one core food group that lots of modern parents are cutting back on, despite knowing the positive nutritional benefits it offers for all the family.
An important food group that if our children started refusing it, we’d immediately panic and call the doctor without delay.
A nutritious food that isn’t just good for kids, but good for us parents too…
And so, I thought I’d write one of my special poems about it…enjoy!
Why won’t you drink your milk?
As parents, we spend every day,
making sure that our kids are OK.
That they’re eating their greens
and aren’t just glued to screens,
while keeping them out of harm’s way.
But with all this parental perfection,
there’s one thing that still needs attention,
(where we all fall behind
due to our daily grind)
and that’s giving OURSELVES more affection.
We’re so focused on our kids’ nutrition
(as ensuring they eat well’s our mission),
that ours takes a back seat
when we choose what WE eat,
being THEIR (not our own) dietitian.
If we feel a bit podgy, we cut
any foods that might widen our gut.
Whether alcohol, fat,
carbs or sugar at that,
we think best just to keep our mouths shut.
Though there’s one food we sometimes dismiss,
whose benefits you’d surely miss –
it’s rather delicious
and oh, so nutritious –
it’s milk, guys! Now listen to this…
As a toddler we thought milk the best
(from the moment we grew out of breast).
We’d drink it twice daily,
no ifs, buts or maybes
and without it, we’d get quite distressed.
‘Cos with milk, kids are rather reliant
(dare deny them, they’d sure cause a riot).
“Drink your milkie”, we call.
“Come on now, DRINK IT ALL!”
As it’s part of a good balanced diet.
For a glass of milk’s one of a kind,
with good stuff for body and mind.
It’s got protein, potassium,
Ace for kids AND for adults, you’ll find!
Why would you stop drinking milk?
It’s creamy and smoother than silk.
The Egyptians once bathed in it.
City traders still trade in it.
So, come on, let’s get sloshed on milk!
If you don’t like the taste, well, that’s fine.
You can still get that dairy you pine;
as yoghurt and cheese
are both destined to please,
on their own or with crackers and wine!
I hope you’ve enjoyed today’s poem, extolling the virtues of dairy as a key element of a healthy, balanced diet; not just for kids, but for us oldies too!
The idea for this poem came to me after reading the latest research from AHDB (the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board), which found that while the vast majority of young parents (up to 86%) have a positive opinion of dairy and ensure that their children consume dairy products daily, for some reason us grown-ups don’t choose it for ourselves as often as we used to. Meanwhile, the research revealed that a third of us parents have actually tried to reduce our dairy intake, while one in four of us now consume dairy alternatives instead of the real thing.
As a milk lover myself, this really surprised me. Because milk and dairy-based products are nutrient dense…
Take a glass of milk, for example, which contains all of these wonderful nutrients:
- Calcium (needed for the maintenance of normal bones)
- Protein (which contributes to a growth in muscle mass)
- Phosphorus (that contributes to normal energy-yielding metabolism)
- Potassium (which contributes to the maintenance of normal blood pressure)
- Iodine (that contributes to the maintenance of normal skin)
- Vitamin B12 (which contributes to normal red blood cell formation and to normal psychological function)
- And vitamin B2 (otherwise known as Riboflavin, which contributes to the reduction of tiredness and fatigue)
Clearly, all things that benefit not only kids but us grown-ups as well!
So, what are you waiting for?
Cut yourself a little slice of hard cheese, grab a yoggie from the fridge or just pour yourself a glass of the good stuff, and get your grown-up dairy hit for the day!
And to find out more about the nutritional benefits that milk and dairy products provide for the whole family, click here!
This sponsored post has been written in collaboration with AHDB…although, as you might have gathered from my poem, I was already something of a dairy fan before they got in touch!