Purchasing power. How to feed your kids well without breaking the bank


Amandine Schmidt, Dietitian // Photo Metropol de Leon – Jeremy Quinn)

Chips or green salad? Pizza or fish fillet? Cookies or apples? For parents, choosing a good diet for their children is often a hurdle course. Because the simple solution must be satisfied with ready-made food: a quick trip to the microwave and Presto! Everyone is happy. Sometimes they even have a good conscience for their wallets because the supermarket offered three pizzas the day before for the price of one or more sodas in a pack of 12. Unless you go through two stages and three movements of catering …

But now, eating well does not mean just eating something to feel full. In addition, the recent black series of spoiled food (buitoni, kinder, etc.) and still being sold which has severely contaminated children in particular is something to challenge all parents.

Less serious about this concern is the tragic reality of childhood obesity that affects more and more children: Recent scientific research on the eating habits of young people in France and abroad shows a link between nutritional imbalances and obesity. , And it’s from a young age. However, this phenomenon, already very present in the United States, is gaining momentum in France, as in most industrialized countries. Most recently, the World Health Organization indicated that “one in three children (29% boys and 27% girls) on the ancient continent is overweight.”

Cook local and seasonal products as much as possible

But then what should be done to avoid falling into the easy trap of harming the health of her children? And how can we get out of it when inflation is hitting our food staples with full force?

Two answers are possible: The first is not to change the baby’s eating habits, even if it means limiting oneself to the end of the month. Not easy!

The second is undoubtedly more demanding in the short term because it disrupts our habits and challenges simple planning. But it will pay off regardless of its “food” budget. The second, which fluctuates between 400 and 1000 euros per month for a family of two children, usually ranks 2nd or 3rd in the family budget. The principle is to cook local and seasonal products as much as possible by yourself and why not with the help of kids. So it takes more time to prepare the food, but in the end everyone wins.

“Choose whole food pasta”

However, Amandine Schmidt, the dietitian in charge of the nutrition project at Metropol de Leon, whom we interviewed, suggested. “Prepared meals can certainly be more convenient and sometimes cheaper, but they also contain large amounts of additives, fats and sugars that are not necessarily good for our health. This is why I recommend making it at home. This is the best way to eat without breaking the bank, ”he explained. “There is no question of spending three hours a day in your kitchen, but if you are not used to cooking, you have to go step by step. And if that’s the case, it’s even more reassuring to start with a variety of foods, including vegetables, fruits and dairy products, “continues Amandine Schmidt, who invites you to balance these purchases, which encourages you to avoid the risk of harm and therefore waste. There is.

“It is advisable to replace meat with vegetable proteins from time to time which is often more economical,” suggests dietitians, “You can find them, for example, in cans. Canned fish that is cheap, given to children. Necessary: ​​These are more satisfying than others and so children are less tempted to eat very sweet food. On the other hand, boxes of revolvali or casulet should really be avoided. Don’t hesitate to be aware, that is to say everything that tastes like food.

Eat family meals

Another important piece of advice, according to Amandin Schmidt: “Everything starts at an early age and children imitate their parents. Teaching your child to eat well makes him an actor in his eating habits. This includes family meals. Parents also need to know how to say no to certain products. This requires controlled access to on-screen ads, especially during childhood. Parents can watch them with children to teach them to criticize. A

So the task is not easy but it is like trying to get help (read below) if needed. Because if children’s health has value, then we know today that a balanced diet can bring it about as it grows. And beyond.

A cooking workshop organized by the BelleBouffe Association / Photo DR

BelleBouffe hosts cooking workshops

In this region, a number of associations (La Legumeri, Recap et Gেলmel, Sense et Savoir, etc.) offer to save the planet as well as help families eat better. Among them is BelleBouffe, which has been offering jobs since 2019 to promote “quality, dignified and sustainable food for all.”

Mary-Amandine Vermilion, its co-founder and social psychologist, explains how Belebauf continues to promote a balanced diet without breaking the bank.

“We surround ourselves with the ability to act without a guilt-ridden approach. This is mainly for mothers who attend our workshops and one of our first steps is to help them identify alternative food offers nearby. For example Amap, Cooperative Mini-Market, Solidarity Grocery Store. We often see that there are not many. We then help them gain access to food quality information. Many barriers, especially of a cultural nature, need to be removed. Family infections are often the focus of discussion.

The parent-child workshop is conducted in two phases. The first is usually baked chocolate cake, for example, a zucchini for butter substitution. Everyone enjoys this kind of cooking because it is easy to do and can be repeated especially at home.

Homemade cakes are much less expensive than those sold in supermarkets

The second step then allows you to calculate the total purchase price of the ingredients that make these homemade cakes possible and compare them to the price of an art chocolate cake. The two types of products are compared with economic but environmental criteria. We based on nutrient barometers like Nutriscore, Echo-score, Nova-score and then we noticed that home-made cakes based on these objective data won all the votes. It is less expensive than even those sold in supermarkets at a discount.

To entice their children even more, sometimes the school is singled out when they do not have the latest fashionable cakes, mothers do not hesitate to imitate them. The funny thing is how these parents appreciate that they are able to create their own using only local and seasonal products. We also tend to direct them to more vegetarian foods. In 2022, we plan to hold about sixty cooking workshops aimed at reassuring parents on how to create a good, beautiful and simple meal, where the bank has to be part of environmental change without breaking down. The problem is the supply of healthy and cheap products that are underdeveloped in certain districts. A

Leave a Comment