The Negative Effects of Junk Food
My husband and I are very serious about feeding our daughter the healthiest foods possible. That being said, we know that there are times when there is an exception to the rule.
We feel that it’s ok to have treats in moderation. That is just what they are, treats, and in our household, they are not to be given on a day-to-day basis, only special occasions. We have a rule (for ourselves as well) that if we eat well 90% of the time, we can let go a little for the other 10%. Without doing this, we feel that we will become fed up with eating all healthy foods and start eating more and more of the bad stuff.
So, I’ll admit, a few weeks ago (the week before Easter to be exact), we “fell off the wagon” a bit, not only with ourselves, but with our daughter as well. Our excuse: “It’s Easter…it’s a holiday. Everyone is bringing/buying us and our daughter sweets, so we might as well splurge and enjoy”. So, splurge we did. After the first day that we let our daughter have sweets, we started becoming more lenient than usual. “Mommy and Daddy are having a cookie, so you can too. Mommy and Daddy are eating ice cream so you can too.” You can’t eat something yourself and not let your kids have it, right?
We started noticing something that week. Our daughter was not acting like her normal self. She was having meltdowns more frequently and acting well, very bratty (sorry, it’s the only way I know how to put it). We started to wonder who had come and taken our daughter and replaced her with a look-alike, because this was not our daughter’s normal behavior. Something was off, very off.
Then Easter Sunday rolled around. This was the day it all came to a head. She ate sweets, sweets and more sweets all day. We let her splurge because we were splurging, and because the Easter Bunny had been so good to her (from us, her family, etc.), that we could not say no!
That night when we got home, she started complaining of a belly ache, and BAM – she vomited all those sweets (TMI, I know). This was a wakeup call for us. We had been giving this child WAY too many sweets/treats.
So starting the following Monday, we cut out treats and went back to our super healthy diet. Guess what? No more meltdowns. No more bratty behavior. No more hitting and screaming at us when she didn’t get her way. She was back to her normal, wonderfully behaved self!
The other Mommy’s daughter had a similar experience recently with food coloring. She’s noticed that when her daughter has food coloring, she exuberates abnormal behavior and is not herself at all. Read more about food coloring and its effects on children.
We learned from this situation that treats in moderation are sometimes ok, treats all day every day: not ok. We have seen firsthand from this experience what junk food overload does to our daughter and are going to be much
stricter about it in the future. We are also applying this to ourselves. We feel that if our children see us eating healthy, it sets a good example for them to do the same. We are trying to replace the saying “Do as I say” with “Do as I do”, and by doing that, we try to watch our own behavior carefully.
What are some effects you have seen from junk food? Have you noticed a difference in your children when feeding them treats/sweets? If so, please let us know in the comments below!