Face-off Between America’s Favorite Vegetables
Getting kids to eat their vegetables in many households can be a challenge. The ageless favorites are corn and peas, but which is healthier?
It’s good news to know that they both are very nutritious!
Corn is higher in calories and is included as filler in many processed products. Corn meal, corn starch and corn oil are low cost ingredients for manufacturers, so they are widely used in the industry. Corn itself is high in fiber (12 grams per 1-cup serving, and has 5 grams of protein. High in magnesium and B6, it has a bad reputation for being high in sugar, but one cup has only 1.1g.
Peas are a versatile vegetable that are high in fiber, filled with 9 grams per 1 cup serving. At 8 grams of protein, they are nutritious as well. Recently I started using a product that is new to me, pea protein powder, as part of my rotation after a heavy workout. It has 24 grams of protein (similar to whey), versus egg white powder at 18 grams. My biggest issue with the product is that it keeps a very grainy texture that doesn’t seem to smooth out. It can feel unpleasant to me.
One priority is to educate kids on the importance of how whole foods (i.e. vegetables, fruit, lean protein, low-calorie dairy) can lead them to being sick less often, having more energy and running and playing longer. Be a good role model for them in the foods and drink you select for yourself. You may not think they look at you for guidance, but you are a powerful influence. Do they see you drinking soda? Are you grabbing chips at the gas station but complaining that you can’t lose weight?
Start a family-fitness plan. Make a plan that involves the children to have an input on the menu, as long as it includes the foods mentioned above. Teach them some cooking skills (age-appropriate). Explain that learning to take care of themselves empowers them to be more independent (they’ll love that). Maybe you all can take a cooking class together!!