Thanks to Stonyfield for the opportunity.
I am filled with this guilt that my kids eat poorly and do not eat enough healthy foods. I have incredibly picky eaters, and I try not to indulge their single food diets, but sometimes you just want them to eat anything. I think when my son Jack was three-five years old he only ate mac n’ cheese! And now my youngest daughter who is four refuses to eat anything but cucumbers. SO at least it is a green veggie!
So when the opportunity came up to attend the Stonyfield Yogurt brunch with a discussion with nutritionist and pediatrician Dr. Tanya Atlmann, I jumped at the chance. I liked the idea that she was a practicing pediatrician who saw that many of the issues her patients were facing will improve with a healthier diet. So she shifted the focus of her practice to nutrition in early childhood and how to help parents with picky eaters.
Who doesn’t love Stonyfield Yogurts Yo Baby! It was the first organic yogurt on the market available in regular grocery stores. My kids have grown up with their yogurt, and this opportunity to hear more about their line of foods was eye-opening.
Founder Gary Hirshberg shared Stonyfield’s story about how their nonprofit organic farming school started with just seven cows and his families desire to share their knowledge of organic and sustainable farming would not only improve their farming community but would provide delicious and pesticide-free food for everyone. 35 years later their small one farm business has grown into 100s of sustainable organic farms with their healthy yogurt in grocery stores across the country. A few things that Gary mentioned stuck out to me:
“We are what we eat, Kids need whole milk and need organic.” Recent research is showing that pesticides in foods before the age of 3 effect IQ and have a lasting effect on a lifetime.
Stonyfield YoBaby comes in cups made of PLA cups (meaning, made from plants!) Plant-based packaging has a lower carbon footprint. Stonyfield heard from moms that they were concerned with polystyrene packaging.
Stonyfield Organic YoBaby has BB-12 probiotics for happy tummies. BB-12® has been shown to have a digestive health benefit when regularly consumed as part of a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle by promoting beneficial gut bacteria and regular, soft stools
Dr Tanya continued the discussion about healthy eating with her recommended Foundation Foods:
1. Green Veggies
2. Eggs (make the best breakfast. It is essential for growing brains & bodies to kick off your day with protein)
3. Milk, Cheese, Yogurt (Another excellent source of protein and whole milk is best, Vitamin D from milk is vital for kids and adults)
4. Fish (Omega 3 is vital for growing brains)
5. Prunes (keeps everything moving along)
6. Nuts and Nut Butters (Studies have also shown that (Food) Allergies are not due to early exposure, but rather environment and underexposure)
7. Avocados (excellent source of healthy fat and nutrition)
8. Summer Berries / Winter Citrus (natural sources of Antioxidants and vitamin C) (Look for foods locally sourced and organic for the healthier in-season produce)
9. Chicken, Beans & Lentils (protein is vital from different sources)
10. Whole Grains (from whole wheat bread to oatmeal is
11. Water (hydration, hydration, hydration)
Another great tip from Dr. Tanya is to teach your children to count ingredients on food labels. Anything less than 10 is a healthy option.
As I listened to Dr. Tanya, I realized my kids do like more than just one thing. And they like a lot of foods on her foundation list. Kids might be more keen or exciting new meals when they get involved in making them. All kids love to use the blender and smoothies are a fast and healthy way to get the nutrition you need. Yogurt us a natural way to get the protein your kids need, vs. adding a powder protein and convenient if you have to run out the door. The yogurt drink options like the on Stonyfield offers is another good source.
My guilt started to wash away as Stonyfield’s founder Gary commented how impressed he was on how well my four year old ate all her fruit and veggies on her plate at the event. I realize I just need to keep it simple and organic. If I give my kids the healthy option, they will naturally gravitate to them.
TANYA ALTMANN, MD, FAAP
A working mother and UCLA-trained pediatrician who practices in Southern California, Dr. Tanya Altmann is a best-selling author, network television parenting expert, and entertainment industry and child product industry consultant. Dr. Tanya is an American Academy of Pediatrics spokesperson, approved by the national physician organization to communicate complicated medical issues into easily understood concepts. Her book “What to Feed Your Baby” is available now
Stonyfield organic yogurts, smoothies, soy yogurts, frozen yogurts, milk and cream are sold in supermarkets, natural food stores across the country. All of it made without the use of toxic persistent pesticides, artificial hormones, antibiotics or GMOs. Stonyfield also pioneered planet-friendly business practices—from offsetting our yogurt works’ emissions, to making yogurt cups from plants instead of petroleum, to making our own renewable energy, and much more.