Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Healthy Breakfast & Snack ~ Encourage Healthy Eating

A while back I did a post about Stoplight Eating and teaching your kids how to eat in a healthy manner. This means that they need to be able to tell if a food is a Great Food, an OK Food, or a Once In a While Food. This recipe is perfect for several reasons:

1) It's LOADED with healthy foods that kids love - Raisins, Apples, Nuts and Carrots
2) There are lots of foods for younger kids to dump in - they can help you and you help them count out how many cups, teaspoons, stirs, etc it takes to add each ingredient.
3) It's perfect for any meal - but especially for breakfast. It's portable and kids can grab it on the go. Also, grownups really like them too! 

morning glory muffins
Morning Glory Muffins
Makes 12-18 (depending on how big you make 'em)

Bowl 1:
I use the 1/2 white 1/2 wheat flour that's available now - so I just do 2 cups flour.
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup regular flour
3/4 cup sugar
2 Teaspoons baking soda
2 Teaspoons cinnamon
Whisk together

Bowl 2: (I used 1 cup oil as I didn't have applesauce) Combine & stir into dry mix.
3/4 cup egg substitute (or 3 eggs)
1/2 cup oil
1/2 cup applesauce
2 Teaspoons vanilla

Bowl 3: (Pre-prep this to save time). Stir into batter and stir to combine. Add nuts to top after filling muffin tins 2/3's full.
2 cups chopped apples
1/2 cup raisins
3/4 cup grated carrots

2 Tablespoons chopped pecans or walnuts - or you could do rolled oats and sprinkle those on top.

Oven 350 degrees, bake 35 minutes. Bake till tops are springy to the touch. After baking, cool 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack and then cool completely.  Do not burn or over bake.

Enjoy! I found this recipe online somewhere - don't ask me where. =D Thanks whoever shared it!


Nutrition: the Red, Yellow & Green Stoplight method

Here is a repost of a post I did on my "old" blog Family Literacy and You. That blog is no longer active and I thought some of you might find this interesting. Enjoy!


Eat Healthy , Feel Great

by Dr William Sears, MD

This book is written for children and explains the concept of making wise nutritional choices.  He uses an easily understandable concept of green-, yellow-, and red-light foods – “traffic light eating.” In the book, he explains that foods that make you think better, give you more energy to play, and make you grow stronger are green-light foods; just as a green light means “go”, you can go ahead and eat all you want of the green-light foods.


Green Light Foods  are High-nutrition, low-fat, low- or moderate-calorie foods kids can eat often: celery, carrots, broccoli, apples, low-fat yogurt, multigrain pretzels.

Yellow-light foods are okay to eat sometimes, but they won’t make you feel as great as green-light foods will.  Yellow Light Foods are Nutritious but higher-fat or calorie foods that must be eaten in moderation: meats, enriched breads and pasta, full-fat cheese.

Red means stop.  Red-light foods don’t do anything to help your body – they can hurt your body and make you feel too full to eat any of your green-light foods.  These foods have no nutritional value, like cookies and candy, that you should save for special treats.
Traffic Light Eating
This book also discusses the importance of water, different vitamins and nutrients found in foods, how colors can tell you a lot about foods and it offers up a few simple recipe ideas. The book also comes with a chart that you can post in your kitchen that illustrates the red-, yellow-, and green-light concept as a reminder.
The book goes on to discuss ingredients in foods that make them taste good or look good but are bad for you, such as food dyes, hydrogenated oil, preservatives, sugar, and white flower.
Here are some examples of traffic light eating:
Green-light foods:
Yellow-light foods:
Red-light foods:
fruits and vegetables
(*without harmful additives)
hot dogs (most)
vegetable oils (flax and olive)
*pies and cakes
nitrate-containing meats and cold cuts
*white bread
packaged foods w/hydrogenated oils
organic dairy products
pre-packaged foods (lunchables)
whole grains and sprouted grains
*cookies, pastries
*frozen yogurt
punches/drinks w/ added coloring
fish or meat and poultry (no nitrates)
fruit drinks
fast foods fried in hydrogenated oils
homemade soups
*canned soups
cereals w/ dyes & hydrog. oils
soy products, tofu (Non-GMO)
cotton candy
eggs (cage-free/no hormones)
healthy treats (not hydrogenated)
fast foods (some)
crushed ice drinks and
 diet sodas

How to encourage your kids to eat more Fruits and Vegetables
1.  Have fruit washed and easily available.  Cut up veggies and have them ready to eat.
2.  Use fruit for a sweet snack.
3.  Send fruit as a snack in packed lunches.
4.  Serve fruit and vegetables as a snack at home.
5.  Serve salads first at dinnertime, when kids are hungriest.
6.  Try new fruits and vegetables, don't assume your kids don't like them.
     Sometimes kids need to be exposed to new foods up to 14 times before they'll eat it!
7.  Model eating nutritiously - if your kids SEE you eating, it's likely they will too!

Some of Dr William Sears articles YOU might be interested in:

1. Four Benefits of a Brainy Breakfast

2. Make “Happy Meals”
3. Does your child have "NDD"?




  1. That's a nice concept for teaching healthy eating. And those muffins look really good!

  2. I love the terminology "Once in awhile" makes "bad" foods not such a negative concept or taboo treat. That's for a great post...I'm pretty sure I'll be trying those muffins! :)

  3. Outstanding post! I shared it to fb and twitter so others can have the opportunity to read it. My son loves mini muffins - especially in his lunch for school so we will make these together. Thank you.

    jenny at dapperhouse

  4. Gosh everyone - thanks for the kind words. You made my night! and my weekend! I keep coming back to the Stoplight Activity. It's one I originally heard of when I was a Juice Plus Distributor and I keep coming back to it.

  5. Wonderful post and you have done a great job. :)