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Getting Essential Nutrients You Need, but May Be Lacking

It Worked for Me!

Essential Nutrients: You've Got the Idea! continued...

Smoothies are perfect for loading up on essential nutrients, she tells WebMD. "They combine everything you need, like yogurt and fruit. You can use up bananas that are too ripe. All in all, you can tackle a lot of nutrient shortfalls with a smoothie."

She offers a few more ideas:

  • Sneak it in. Put veggies on a sandwich. Have a salad before dinner. Eat a piece of fruit instead of vending machine snacks. Wedge that healthy stuff into your diet wherever you can.
  • Try vegetable juices. V-8 Splash and others are a great option for people who aren't big on eating veggies. "They're very thick because they have a lot of fiber," says Zelman.
  • Plan ahead, shop ahead. If the good stuff is stocked in the pantry or fridge, half the battle is won. To get the family to eat it, make sure it's chopped and ready to eat, she advises. "That's the best way to foster healthy eating."

If your kids crave a McDonald's stop, let them have the burger, Zelman says. But switch out the fries in favor of a healthier option. Good choices: the walnut, yogurt, and fruit salad snack plate -- or yogurt parfait -- or apples with low-fat caramel dip. "It can be dessert. Healthy eating is a matter of changing habits."

What are your best ideas? Share them with the WebMD community. Here are links to three message boards popular with nutrition-minded parents:

 

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Reviewed on May 12, 2009

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