No more stolen bites of mac and cheese! Avoid common parental diet pitfalls and get healthier (and slimmer!) in no time with these strategies from Joy Bauer, RDN and Deborah Orlick Levy, RD.
Mistake #2: Cleaning Your Kids' Plates
Two chicken nuggets and a mouthful of corn was just enough for your 4-year-old. You're not hungry yourself, but you hate to let the rest of her food go to waste.
Get back on track: It seems harmless to pick up a bite here, a mouthful there. But they add up: Each forkful of an indulgent food is around 50 calories a pop, meaning four extra bites of mac and cheese would cost you a whopping 200 calories. Do that twice a week and you'll gain 6 pounds in a year without even noticing. A simple strategy to help you break the habit: For the next few days, every time you're about to pick off your kids' plates, put those bites into a container in the fridge instead of your mouth. Seeing just how much it amounts to is likely to be a wake-up call. Still tempted? As soon as your kids are finished, remove the plates from the table and run them under water, ruining the food. Few things are less appealing than wet French fries. Even better: If your children are 6 or older, teach them to scrape their plates into the garbage when they're done, so you never deal with their leftovers.