When I say that my children drink ice cream, there are parents who look at me weird. I am aware that sweets and saturated fats are bad for the health of children and for anyone in general. Going over sweets is not good for anyone. What’s more, it is normal that in many homes (including mine), where they are aware of how bad it is for health, breakfasts or snacks loaded with sugars or saturated fats are avoided.
Your children’s nutrition in adult life depends on how you feed them in childhood, the choices you put on the table, and how you relate to food. But yes, especially when the heat comes, my kids drink ice cream and I don’t feel guilty about it.
My kids have ice cream
My children drink ice cream and it is not bad that they do it, as long as it is done in moderation and the rest of the food that is maintained in the diet is taken into account. In the same way that if one day they have a sweet, maybe that day there is no ice cream so as not to burden the body too much with undue sugars.
I think there are several factors behind me when I say my kids can have ice cream:
- Summer or weekends are times of relaxation and nothing happens for a controlled excess.
- Relaxing with ice cream is even therapeutic emotionally, it makes you feel good, as long as you don’t depend on food emotionally to feel good.
- Children are forbidden everything, all the time! So, why can’t they have an ice cream from time to time?
- If they are banned from eating over and over again (food they like, obviously), they may become obsessed with it and in the future develop eating disorders that could seriously harm their health.
- It’s okay to be flexible in the diet from time to time.
But there’s more…
Alastair McAlpine made me change my perspective
On alastair McAlpine’s Twitter account you can see posts that will change your view of the world. We are facing a pediatrician of palliative care for children and adolescents … with that work, anyone’s heart is already shrinking. It must be one of the hardest jobs in the world, but it’s actually rewarding because those children and teens feel accompanied and loved in the last moments of their lives.
This pediatrician helps them suffer less and motivates them to smile when they need it most. He listens to them and comforts their families to stay with the best that their children have offered them in life. But one day, he decided to do a job that really changed everything. I wanted to find out a few things about the moments closest to the children’s deaths. Their intention was to discover how they perceived their life and if they felt (those who were able to reason) that it was worth living despite being suffering, having lived so little and being so close to death.
Alastair McAlpine made a list of activities for children and adolescents to choose 5 of them, 5 things they had done and that made them feel that their life was worth it. More than 100 children were interviewed and none said they watched TV, used social media, watched Youtube, argued or were in the hospital.
Some of the answers were:
- Play football
- Enjoy video games
- Being with friends
- Spending time with your family
- Being with pets
- That parents read them stories
These were some things they said, but it’s more than likely that you’re getting an idea of what matters in life… Surely you are feeling the value of family closeness, love, friendship, enjoyment…
But, absolutely everyone said two fundamental things that their life was worth it for:
- Spending time with your family
- Eating ice cream in summer
So yes, I let my children eat ice cream in summer because it is one of the things that thanks to the more than 100 children who participated in the work of this fabulous pediatrician, I know that they are worth it and that they really enjoy.
Now, whenever I can, I try to walk with my children and if it’s hot or just if we feel like it, I try to do these two things together: spend family time while having an ice cream. Because we only have one life, and we have to learn to enjoy these little moments… those who make us feel that everything is worth it, those who make us unite as people and as a family. Because an ice cream is an ice cream, and the family… it’s everything.