Kids Wreck Your Diet

April Peveteaux

childless people eat healthier
My Single Girl Diet
If you made a New Year's resolution to eat healthier, you may want to ship the kids off to Grandma's for the year. A new study on how people eat out of Britain shows the usual things one would expect -- a higher income means more meat and fresh fruits and vegetables. Higher ages means less fats consumed.

But one part of the study has me flummoxed: "Even after controlling for income, age, and other factors, compared with a household with children, a childless household consumed about 4.4 pounds more fruit and vegetables per person over the two-week period."

Households with children are eating less healthy foods in the UK, and one of the authors of the study, a parent himself, says this is something "we already know." Having children makes your diet less healthy.

Huh? This seems counterintuitive to me and not at all accurate if you take a look inside my pantry.

My husband and friends will back me up when they say pre-kids I ate a steady load of take-out, rich foods, very little fresh fruit and veggies, and more than my share of booze. I never set foot inside a farmers' market until I was pregnant.

Today you'll find more fruits and vegetables in my fridge, on my counter, and in my gullet than I ever even thought about eating before. My kids inspired me to change the way I eat simply because I needed to set a good example for them as well. Sure, I still indulge, but nothing like I did before I was responsible for two little people and needed the health and energy to keep up with this crowd.

I can see why the author might suggest that parents don't eat in a very healthy way. We don't have the time to leisurely pick out produce and create masterpieces in the kitchen. But I know I'm not the only one out there that realized if I'm going to be so picky about what my baby puts in her mouth, why am I not doing the same for myself?

Do you eat worse now that you have kids?


Image via Kid_SBTG/Flickr

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