Easter means different things to different people. Whether or not your family is particularly religious, the fact that the holiday comes in the spring – the season of rebirth – offers an opportunity to explore new ideas or develop fresh perspectives on old habits. With this thought in mind, Easter doesn’t have to mean a giant basket of unhealthy, sugary candy for your kids. With a little imagination, you can introduce fun and healthy ways of celebrating the holiday.
The Obesity Factor
Recent studies indicate that the United States is currently facing an obesity epidemic. In 1999, none of the states reported more than 30% of its population as obese. By 2009, however, there were nine states where more than 30% of the population was reported as obese.
Meanwhile, there has been a more than 300% increase in childhood obesity over the past three decades, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
So, as a way of teaching children that holidays don’t have to be about making unhealthy choices, here are a few nutritious treats to try this Easter.
Flower Pot Hummus Dip
Plant the seed of healthy living this spring by making Flower Pot Hummus Dip with your kids. A clean 2-inch terracotta pot is filled with delicious hummus in which you can “plant” healthy veggies like baby carrots, radishes and sugar snap peas
Easter Egg Popsicles
This Easter treat requires only a few plastic Easter eggs, fruit juice, plastic sucker sticks, a large nail and thumbtack, and a small funnel. Simply tip the plastic eggs upside down (you can set them in an actual egg carton) and poke three holes in the bottom – one for filling, and two that allow air to escape. Make the center hole big enough that a sucker stick will fit. Using the funnel, carefully fill the eggs with fruit juice until they are almost full, then slide in the sucker stick and place in the freezer overnight.
Mamma and Two Baby Chicks
This is fun snack full of protein. First, hard boil some eggs. When the eggs are cooled and peeled, leave one whole and make a chicken face by using two poppy seeds for the eyes and a small sliver of carrot for the beak. Next, to create the mamma’s two baby chicks, cut a hard boiled egg lengthwise and, using the poppy seeds and carrot slivers, create tiny chick faces. Place the mamma and her two baby chicks in a colorful bowl and watch your kids gobble them up!
These treats are a great way to start a family tradition and teach your kids that holiday celebrations are a time to celebrate good health, too.
N.d. Photograph. www.potterybarnkids.com. Hummus Dip with Fresh Veggies. Web.
N.d. Photograph.www.justjennrecipes.com. Chickie Eggs. Web.
Elise Redmann works as a writer with the Jacksonville University School of Nursing Online RN to BSN programs where she covers topics on healthy living. You can follow her @EliseRedmann on Twitter.