6 Simple Changes You Can Make Right Now to Improve Your Family's Health

A friend of mine is a real natural mama -- and as much as her energy inspires me, it also exhausts me. It exhausts me because some of this natural parenting stuff is a lot of work. For instance, when my daughter first started solids I was dead-set on blending everything up for every meal. That lasted for about a dozen ice-cube trays worth of broccoli and squash. Don't get me wrong -- I would still mash a fresh banana instead of giving her the jarred version ... but pushing those veggies through a strainer, after steaming and blending -- it just did me in. Who has time for that?

But baby food aside ... all products (food and otherwise) have so many chemicals in them. It would be a full-time job to learn what it all means. And so that's just not gonna happen. Plus, I worry that once I find out what's actually in the stuff I'm using that I will realize there is something harmful in everything I use. Then what?

More from The Stir: Here’s What a Juice Cleanse Diet REALLY Does to You (It Isn’t Pretty!)

So I asked my friend how she keeps track of it all. She told me straight out that I am never going to be able to avoid everything -- it's just not possible -- and it would drive me crazy to try. She referred me to the Environmental Working Group website for when I want to find out if specific products are okay for my family. And then she gave me great advice ... to start small -- and pick and choose what parts of my life I am going to change. Baby steps are key to not getting overwhelmed by it all. Some switches may simply cost too much ... while others might just seem unreasonable given my family's lifestyle. And so with her encouragement I have managed to make my world a little healthier because of the products I've chosen to use. And I haven't really felt much of a difference in my wallet -- or in my every day living. So it's a win-win all around.

Here are six of the super simple changes I've made over the last couple of years ... and there are more to come!


What products do you use to make sure your family stays healthy?

eating healthy, general health, healthy habits, natural health, natural parenting start slideshow


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Holly Stokes

I was very intimidated by going organic with my family. There's so much out there that the amount I already knew felt like just the tip of the ice berg. I was also very worried about the expense since we are a family of four living off just one & a half paychecks in one of the most expensive states. I started converting my house to organics around February and by the beginning of June we could say we are now 99% organic :) if anything, I spend less money now! I love that everything we put on, or in, our bodies is safe and healthy. I feel amazing, and so does the rest of my family. 

Holly Stokes

Now we are working on non-GMO products. Most of our things are GMO free but I am shopping around for whatever remaining products we have that aren't yet. 

Heather Marie Kosur

No strainer need. I just cooked up fruits and veggies, pureed them, and froze the cubes. I even left the peels on most things.

Mommy... Mommytolas

I never strained my veggies just stemmed and mushed. I tried to keep them as similar to how I would serve them for everyone else as possible. I didn't go to heavy on baby foods till he was big enough to start eating chunks, gristmill is best and gives them all the nutrients they need. We are organic but it's tough in our buget would love advice on how to do it cheaper! I am starting a veggie garden which is great here in FL but may not possible when we transfer. I'm looking for more info on GMOs that would be a helpful article!

Mommy... Mommytolas

Oops breastmilk not gristmill stupid phone :-(

Melissa Warner Hale

We buy our grassfed, non-GMO meat in bulk from a local farmer. When you buy a quarter of a cow or half a pig at at a time, the meat is MUCH cheaper than the same quality bought piecemeal. It does require a freezer, but we bought one used. Also, you can cook less meat and rely more on your veggies and sides, which can allow you to purchase organic for the meat you do buy.

As far as baby food, making your own is too much work. But I still did not buy the canned stuff. My babies eat solids when they can pick it up off their own plate and stuff it in their mouths, lol! Fork mashing and teeny tiny bites of the food you serve the rest of the family for dinner is easy-peasy. This idea that we have to puree everything comes from the baby-food industry.

Melissa Warner Hale

And another fairly easy change to make in your life is to get rid of the high-fructose-corn syrup. There are so many products these days that do not contain the hfcs, like ketchup, salad dressing, etc. We bring our own 100% juice boxes to soccer games, and other kid events so the kids have a sweet drink without hfcs.

Jdub372 Jdub372

It actually isn't that hard. Just do one thing at a time. Once you start reading and learning about it then you can't go back because you know too much!

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