Why Honey is a Healthy Swap

Making some healthy swaps at mealtimes can make all the difference to children’s health. The experts at Hilltop Honey come up with a few mouth-watering suggestions…

As parents we all want what’s best for our kids. We want them to be healthy, happy and safe – and we want them to go on to lead long and successful lives as they grow older too. We want to nourish them, protect them and guide them into making decisions that will enrich their lives and help them to navigate the world with confidence. The food we serve up at mealtimes plays a huge role in this shaping of our children – with direct impacts on not only their physical health, but their mental wellbeing too. How we feed our kids matters, and that’s why we’re on a mission to help more families tweak their menus and create healthier habits to last a lifetime. Here are our top five healthy swaps that any family can make right now.

Why make healthy swaps?

Recent research suggests that by the age of 10, most children are regularly exceeding the recommended daily allowance of sugar, which is around 24g, or six sugar cubes (less for younger children). A quick glance at the labels of your family’s favourite foods will give you a better idea of how much sugar your children are really consuming. Some cereals are even eaten with extra sugar added at home too, so its easy to see how the limit is exceeded day after day.

Healthy swaps can really help to cut down the amount of sugar kids eat- and they don’t need to be drastic changes!

Swap sugar for honey

Instead of reaching for sugar at breakfast, try honey instead. It’s just as sweet, but it has a lower GI which means that it won’t spike the blood sugar in the same way, and it’s filled with added minerals and nutrition too. Honey’s also a great substitute for sugar in baking too, leading us on to our next swap…

Swap pre-made bakes for home cooked

Having read the labels and calculated how much sugar is really in the food that you eat, you might want to give home baking a try instead! Traditional cakes made at home are always going to be a better option as you won’t be using any artificial additives or fillers to make them last longer on a supermarket shelf either. The same goes with sauces too – it’s easier than you think to whip up a quick pasta sauce at home, filled with veggies and packed with nutrition, rather than sugar.

Swap fruit juice for water

It doesn’t have to be plain water if the kids really want a little flavour. Fruit infused water is easy to make and a great way to wean them off cartons of juice that are filled with sugar. You can make this a gradual transition, and involve the kids in picking which fruits to try next.

Swap TV dinners for family mealtimes

Recent studies have found that a mere 28% of families in the UK actually sit down together for meals, with 73% of those surveyed admitting that feeding the kids separately made life a lot easier for them. And in this age of busyness, we can see why grabbing something quick at the end of the day is a lot more appealing than cooking from scratch! The problem is though, that when we eat in front of the TV, we don’t always pay attention to the food on our plates, and that’s how unhealthy choice are more likely to be made.

For children, eating together as a family isn’t just about the food. Its a chance to communicate, to learn from modelled behaviour and to try new foods too. It’s also a great opportunity for parents to talk to their kids about food choices and why we’re making these swaps in the first place.

Swap meat for veg once a week

We all know that we should be eating five portions of fruit and vegetables per day, but in reality not all of us manage it. Having one day a week where we swap out meat for a vegetarian option can be a really good way to tackle this head on- and it might introduce some new family favourites too!

Experimenting with new meals is a great way to introduce the kids to a wider variety of foods, not to mention the fact that eating less meat is a great way to support biodiversity. Opt for organic vegetables if you can- supporting pesticide-free farming helps to protect bees and other pollinating insects.


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