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Pasta Detox

by bkhoury on March 10, 2011

The past few weeks have been madness around here.  And with that, I found myself leaning on pasta for lunches and dinners.  We’ve had a babysitter transition and I started fixing a healthy pasta dish in the morning that she could easily feed the kids for lunch.  (Until the sitter became accustomed to our schedules while juggling two boys)  At least I knew the kids would have full tummies while they were getting comfortable with a new person in their lives. 

Then one night I realized that both the kids were rejecting meat and vegetables and only wanted to eat starchy rice and pasta.  Now, I have nothing against pasta and rice.  But if it is at the expense of protein and vegetables, then I don’t think it is a good thing.  We try to stress balance in our home (try being the operative word). 

In the spirit of trying, I launched a rather radical experiment.  For a week, I only served meats, legumes and vegetables.  I hypothesized that if the boys only had access to non-starchy food, they would have no choice but to eat it!  I considered my own experience with salads or any healthy food for that matter.  Once I start eating them,  I want more. Sometimes though, there is a mental hurdle to clear.  i.e.  choosing a salad over a comforting piece of pizza. 

I am happy to report that my experiment was somewhat successful.  The boys rediscovered their love for vegetables.  Hunter is back to wolfing down meat and beans.  William, as he gets older, is a harder sell but at least he has changed his expectations in terms of always filling up on a starch at dinner.  And I’m surprised and, secretly thrilled, to report for the first time in his life he did not eat his macaroni last night (his all time favorite) but opted to fill up on vegetables instead!   

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