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Family Meals and Mindful Eating

Carol Berg Sloan, RDN, FAND

We recently had the pleasure of a weekend getaway on the family boat. My adult daughters have birthdays about 2 weeks apart so the party began after weeks of planning meals and packing the right clothes. The clothes were easy, but the meals took a bit more time.

While always thinking about balance when it comes to food, sweet treats, fun beverages, and fancy hors d'oeuvres were in order. I thought for a long time about how to keep it all in balance.

  • Cake pops make great alternatives to large slices of birthday cake. They allow everyone to have a sweet treat without overdoing the sugar!
  • With such a variety of no-and-low calorie beverages on the market, it’s easy to fit them in to a balanced diet. We opted for some diet sodas and low calorie punches for our party.
  • Baby vegetables with a Greek yogurt-based dip make a great addition to any spread.

Being together, now that the kids have scattered, was a treat in itself. The food tasted better, the drinks were more refreshing, and our hikes were more enjoyable. Research reveals that eating together feeds more than just the body. It nourishes the mind and soul as well.

Planning ahead, making smart choices regarding food and drinks, while fitting in exercise makes for a memorable and healthy weekend. Presence is indeed "presents" enough.


Carol Berg Sloan RDN, FAND is a registered dietitian/nutritionist and independent food and nutrition communications consultant in Long Beach, California. Carol has served as a delegate to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. She is a committee member of the California Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Nutrition Education for the Public and Dietitians in Business and Communication Dietetic Practice Groups.


Tags: Health National Advocacy Blog
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