I Don’t Let My Kids Snack (and they are healthier and happier because of it)

I don’t let my children eat snacks it’s
controversial I know but it has made them both happier and healthier I’m
going to tell you exactly why and plus my little disclaimer slush how
we get into it / exceptions at the end of the video the first reason why I
don’t let my children eat snacks is because they need time to digest their
food this is something that growing up small frequent meals were like that’s
what you need to do to be healthy small frequent meals I felt awful like Iowa’s
carb based I was eating like probably every two hours which is more often than
newborn like premature babies and the NICU eat I just didn’t feel good I was
always constantly thinking about food I didn’t want that for my children so I do
better intermittent fasting where I’m only eating during about an eight hour
or six hour window during the day my children’s form of intermittent fasting
is that they eat meals at set times every day and then they’re done so we
usually eat when they get up they get up at like 6:00 or 7:00 and so they eat
around 7:00 and then they eat her out again around noon and then again around
5:30 or 6:00 by having that structured time their body has the time to complete
the whole digestive process so they’re not in constant state of both secreting
bile to digest the fats and secreting insulin to digest the glucose and having
the stuff down below that they ate 45 minutes later and having the stuff down
even lower in the testin that they eat before that there’s just a lot of people
and kids are having this constant state of digestion their body never gets a
break from digestion all day long and there have been studies that show that
growth hormone is increased in growth hormone growth hormone isn’t only
important for growth it’s also kind of gives you a general sense of well-being
so growth hormone is increased by a fasting period that’s over 12 hours so
if my kids finish dinner at 5:30 and then they’re not eating again until 7:00
they still get that little bump of above 12 hours that they are in that fasting
mode which increases their growth hormone gives them that sense of
well-being and their body is just fine like this is something we’ll get into at
the end but you can train your hunger hormones it’s not like oh I’m required
to eat every two hours but you might be fine intermittent
Bastien this is something that we can change the second reason that I don’t
let my kids snack is because I want them to be able to attend to activities and
this really helps I find that whenever we slip into snacking they are so
focused on snacking and this isn’t a parenting issue and this isn’t a
personality issue for them this is me working with their own body chemistry so
if their body is accustomed to eating three meals a day and that’s it that’s
what it ends up wanting and so if we finish our breakfast at 7:30 which we
often do right now at summertime and then we can go to the park or we can go
on a hike or we can go fishing or even on errands all morning without having to
stop to snack and you have no idea until you’ve done it how precious that is to
be able to be engaged in an activity with all three children like it can be
really chaotic with three kids and so once we get engaged and none of them are
gonna need to eat until noon that’s just something that’s really beneficial to me
it’s beneficial to us as a family and I feel like it helps them thoroughly enjoy
hobbies and to stay engaged in an activity without having that constant
need for food and having food be their primary like focus it’s almost like a
biologically driven thing for kids that are car burners or kids that are used to
eating every two hours is that whenever anything gets hard whenever anything is
boring whenever anything is stressful they’re just like oh well I could eat so
I’m gonna tell mom I’m hungry and probably goldfish or pretzels or even
apples are a better distraction than sitting with my feet with feelings of
frustration or stress or anything like that
so being engaged in activities is another reason why I absolutely love
that we don’t snack and then the third which is definitely not insignificant is
that they eat my meals and so if you’re like me and you spend plenty of time
sourcing good food for your children finding recipes cooking healthy meals
and then you put them on the table and they’re not hungry it can be so
frustrating it can be disheartening it can make me feel like I don’t really
want to cook for you anymore it can be really frustrating when I
Kissed don’t so when you’re feeding your kids three
times a day and you would think they’d get hangry which we’ll talk about this
in a second they don’t like they are they’re hungry 20 minutes before their
meal but they’re not like hungry for hours before their meal they’re hungry
for like when their body expects to be eating and it starts releasing those
hormones that it’s a it’s ready to digest food again so that they eat their
food and they eat what I think they should be eating another controversial
opinion is that they eat their protein and their fat and their vegetables and
this is something that I think is essential for them they grow really well
like my kids have always been like right on track for their height and weight and
height and weight is always like whatever percent I like I’ve got one
that’s pretty big so he’s always like 80 and 80 and I’ve got one that’s a little
bit smaller so he’s like 25 and 25 but my kids have always grown super well
like I’ve just been really happy with their growth their doctors really happy
with their growth and I think a big part of this is that they’re eating their
meals like they come and eat a balanced meal and it’s so much easier to put
together a balanced meal than trying to put together a little balanced bite of
food every 45 minutes two hours or whatever happens when you’re snacking
all the time and another addition to that is it can be a lot easier on your
budget is that we have very little wasted food like it’s not uncommon that
if someone isn’t hungry and doesn’t finish their plate someone else comes in
and finishes it and since we’re only eating three times a day that’s just
less time that wasted food can happen it’s more time that I am willing to
dedicate to making those three meals because I haven’t felt like I was in the
kitchen all day just eating those three solid meals a day has been really
beneficial for us so let’s talk about how I transitioned on to this first so I
kinda tend to be a lot more relaxed a lot more baby led when my babies are
infants I breastfeed on demand and that’s what I did with all three of them
as they weaned which my kids weaned between like two years and three years I
after they were a year and starting to eat more food I fed them three meals a
day like often it was just from my plate a link above to my house
solids but a lot of times they just eat right from my plate three meals a day
because that’s what I was eating and I do eat three meals when I’m
breastfeeding I don’t enter it and fast as much so the transition onto three
solid meals a day so as I’m transitioning them onto food i
limit nursing to nap time and wake-up time
and so they’re like they’re nursing sessions kind of go down as their naps
go down and so that’s just kind of our gentle weaning I do like if a kid’s
going through a growth spurt or they’re sick I have no problem nursing them more
but I kind of use nursing as their snacks and so as they wean all of mine
sort of wean themselves like I could kind of structured them into it
but it wasn’t something that we had to fight about and so they were kind of
okay with not nursing not as much and so as we weaned that’s where the snacks
went and so from weaning we just went right to three meals a day
the only exception for this is like my ten-year-old as a swimmer now and so
when he’s going through a growth spurt and he’s swimming I have no problem if
he comes and has a fourth meal after swim practice because I know how it is
to be like hungry and a lot of times we eat our dinners earlier on the days he
swims and so if he’s going through a growth spurt and he ate all his dinner
like what I don’t like to fall into the habit of is them picking at their food
and hoping that something better is coming no that doesn’t happen so if he
had all his dinner and he’s hungry and he wants to go grab leftovers from the
fridge or have eggs or have something else that’s kind of meal like like even
Apple and peanut butter I think is fine I have no problem with that if my kids
do like I said if they’re eating all of their meals and they are still hungry
like maybe I didn’t make enough dinner or I didn’t make enough lunch and
they’re still hungry like an hour later I will feed them as long as they will
continue eating their meals and so that’s my judges if they’re eating what
I think a decent portion is for their size and needs and they’re still hungry
it’s probably cuz they’re growing and I go ahead and feed them you can also do
the egg test and so I’ll just like boil a bunch of eggs and have a bunch of
hard-boiled eggs in the fridge and so if they’re hungry enough to just grab a
hard-boiled egg and eat that then that’s fine you can go ahead and have an
boiled egg that’s fine but if they’re picky and they want carbs or even fruit
which is really sugar heavy I do limit that and then my last exception is sent
you let them have popsicles popsicles are a fun thing to make they cool down
in the winter and like the amount of stuff that’s in popsicle molds so we
make a lot of different homemade popsicles right now I’m making keto
popsicles because we’re on keto the amount of it’s like a quarter cup of
pureed liquid and so I let them have a popsicle in the afternoon after they’ve
been playing outside and so that’s my other exception if after this you’re
considering giving no snacks a try it’s something I definitely recommend you do
it’s just kind of like like you can train yourself to go to sleep early and
get up early you can train your kids hunger hormones and so just go slowly
spaced out the snack serves like start with three solid meals and then spaced
out what you have been doing really just having that limit around food kind of
frees them up to both experience boredom because food isn’t there to distract
them and that’s something that’s super important for kids to learn that it’s
okay to be bored it doesn’t mean that you need to go eat or you need to go get
into trouble it’s okay to sit with your boredom and maybe think of something
constructive to do and also for their blood sugar to adjust and their hormones
to adjust it so that as parents this is something that I think you will find is
super beneficial it does take a little bit to kind of get your kids in the
habit of it and to make this transition so don’t think it’s going to happen
overnight with no fussing but once you get there like my kids are twelve ten
and five and they don’t expect snacks and you have no idea how free and that
is for me I’ll see you back soon we’re gonna talk about chores and some other
things with kids too this summer but I will see you back soon if you’d like
more information go ahead and click on the link over there and I have a written
blog post and I have more videos on this as well I hope I’ll see you back soon

30 Replies to “I Don’t Let My Kids Snack (and they are healthier and happier because of it)”

  1. I completely agree. My almost 2 year old eats zero to low carb most of the time and does really well. I can tell if she gets apples or crackers at church or daycare. Later she'll be whining at the pantry or fridge wanting a snack. She does so much better without carbs. Never hangry and happily eats her meals.

  2. This is very timely. I’ve been rethinking the snack situation in my house and it definitely needs limits. Thanks!

  3. I love this… I also personally felt terrible a lot of the times as a kid… with snacking, carb dominant meals and snacks. I do not have children but I agree with this as it makes so much sense and I also practice intermittent fasting- fat and animal based eating habits. I appreciate how you approach it with your child that swims too. Making it make sense…eating enough for body's demand but not just supply & demand due to "habits" of grazing and snacking. Great approach.

  4. I've never been a snacker and now that I know more about nutrition I give myself minimum 4 hours in between meals don't want to raise insulin levels for no reason

  5. The only time my kids get snacks are when they are at school because they have a snack time and I feel bad not sending them in with a snack. But at home I try to extend their fasting and mainly they do two big meals on non school days. On school days they get a fatty protein breakfast of eggs and sugar free pork sausages and whole milk mozzarella (not raw but at least it's fatty). When they are home all day we wait as long as we can for their first meal until they tell me they are hungry and that's usually lunch time. I only do 1 big meal at dinner time and no snacking. I've lost over 20 pounds intermittent fasting and being carnivore and I've only been doing this like 1 month and I still occasionally eat bananas and pears and kiwis and apples and carrots.

  6. Well done!
    It started in the 60s as a clever marketing ploy to increase sales.
    In UK we had Milky Way, "the sweet you can eat between meals without spoiling your appetite".

  7. Hey! My 8 year old doesn't snack either. We do eggs for breakfast everyday. his choice for lunch, either grilled cheese or pb&j, and my choice for dinner. usually beef and veg. He is very happy with it and doesn't complain about being hungry until about an hour before dinner. probably because of the carbs, Oh well! Anyway great video!

    It makes me crazy when my friends have a snack basket and drawer in the fridge with things that are pretty much candy.

  8. Those kids are lucky to have you as their mom.. They will grow up healthy and strong… Diet is so important…

  9. Soooo, how did you break the mentality for them that it's "time" for a snack. I do the carrot/homemade hummus test. They know before dinner, if they are really hungry they dont get another snack lol I have ALWAYS done the "eat every 3 hours" thing with my kids, but realized I'm desensitizing their hunger cues inadvertantly. I'm SO open, but having them adapt to no snacks will be hard, especially with the extra activity of the summer. (My kids are always outside and active really anyway).

  10. My mum always made home cooked meals. We always had eggs and bacon for breakfast. If she's make spag bol I'd ways eat around the pasta. Then we got older as teenager we could eat biscuits and candy all the time. I got migraines all the time. I'm now alot older but keto/carnivore benefits me most.

  11. Great video! We also don't snack and our meal times are 8 am 12 noon and 6pm. Though we do have a kind of tea time 'snack' at 3 pm. I too have always done this and they do always finish their food and rarely say they are hungry. Would love to know some of your keto popsicle recipes!

  12. U look so good, like WOW! Is this primarily because of the super nutrient-dense carnivore diet or is it because you're starting to get more Vitamin D3?

  13. Great video. In my culture "snack" is a negative word, to defined something that is not good enough to be called food. Kids used to be instructed to bring real food to school, "no snacks and juices allowed". I will share this video on some platforms.

  14. I'd definitely like to try this! I feel like I'm the kitchen ALL-DAY. My son is 18 months and I'm wondering if he is too young for me to attempt to implement this style of nutrition. Any thoughts? Do you have a resource to share where I could learn about daily nutritional needs for toddlers? I find lots of confusing information online and in books aswell🙄🤯

  15. I am just stalking some of your videos while I clean and cook. I just wanted to say that I totally agree about not snacking being so good. It's something I am currently working on for myself and then I want to tackle with my little ones (my teen will be a harder case). I find when my littles don't have a snack between actual meals they eat a meal and are so much less picky about the meal. I have heard the quote a few times lately that "hunger is the best sauce" and that certainly seems to be the case. Meals taste so much better when you are actually hungry!

    I don't think you mentioned this but less or no snacking is so good for the budget too!

  16. Another thought… I bet you share my annoyance that EVERY activity for children includes a snack. Sunday school or a sports event that lasts an hour should not require a snack!

  17. YOUR KIDS ARE SO LUCKY, this is awesome what you do. 
    Wish I had that as a kid, I secretly stuffed my face with sugar and chocolate and chips – and not being hungry for meals. Shitty habit.

  18. I feel the same way about the inner food clock with my child (and myself) after restructuring the times when we eat ♥️. I only wish I had done this sooner. She has awesome food in her body now that she’s not eating, before eating 🤪. It was the bit of mom-guilt I had to just ignore while I was restructuring our inner food clock. I also save so much money because YESS!! There is so much less waste now. That is so real!

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