Amy Rodriguez is best known for being a two-time Olympic gold medalist soccer star, but the role she cherishes most is that of mom to her two kids. Staying fit and healthy is a priority for Amy and she works hard to make sure she is feeding her kids wholesome foods. Here, she shares some of her best tips on how to keep active families eating well on the go.
Kristen: How do you keep up with eating healthy as a busy mom?
Amy: When I go grocery shopping I try to pick items that are going to be right in my fridge; easy to pick up and go and healthy at the same time.
Kristen: When you’re shopping and looking at labels, what are you looking for? What differentiates a healthy snack versus an unhealthy snack for you?
Amy: I typically look for products with the USDA certified organic seal on them. Those products are usually brands that I trust. You know what you’re getting. It’s all natural. Shopping organic means you’re not going to get any toxins, artificial hormones or pesticides, nothing GMO. That’s really important for our little kids. We’re taking care of their bodies because we are developing their immune systems. We are developing their growth. It’s super important to be feeding them the right foods.
Kristen: It’s hard sometimes as a mom to convince my kids that healthier eating is the best way. Especially when they may have friends at school sitting next to them with red dye and sugar snacks and all that kind of stuff. As a professional athlete, what advice would you give to some older kids, teens or tweens, about why healthy eating actually is important?
Amy: Obviously being a professional athlete, my body is super important and what I feed it is also super important. To make sure that I’m firing on all cylinders and I’m performing well on the field, I need to be making sure that I’m putting the right foods in my body. With two little kids I find that they’re impressionable and they’re developing habits of either healthy eating or unhealthy eating. I’m trying my best to lead by example: Show them important foods and what they can do and how they can make you feel.
Kristen: What are some of your favorite go to snacks for your kids?
Amy: Yogurt is a total staple in my house for both the adults and kids. It’s a quick high protein, high calcium snack in the morning. I usually feed them Stonyfield YoKids squeezers in the little pouches. They love them. They’re super healthy for you, organic, low in sugar, all the things you would want in a quick little bite to eat.
Kristen: How about for you?
Amy: In the morning I’ll get a little yogurt cup, maybe a slice of toast and be off to my work out. I find that a high protein breakfast without a ton of sugar is going to be the best for performance for me.
Kristen: For parents who may not understand what GMO even stands for, why is that something that we want to avoid?
Amy: For me personally, genetically modified foods are no bueno. I try not to feed them to my kids because it’s not natural. We don’t even know what’s going into it. There could be toxic pesticides. There could be artificial ingredients, hormones, antibiotics, anything that may not come just straight from the earth. I find that when I feed my kids organic, their energy is higher. Their health is better. Overall, I just find that as a safer, best choice for my kids.
Kristen: Any other tips that you have for moms trying to keep their kids eating healthy?
Amy: Like you said, when the kids go to school and they see other kid’s lunchboxes filled with other things, I find that there’s a sense of peer pressure there. I think it’s important to lead by example. We’re developing those habits and we’re creating their diet for them. We hope that this will carry on through them when they make their own choices as they get older. If my kid opens up the fridge he has healthy options.
Stonyfield offers an amazing line of non-GMO organic yogurts for both adults and kids. My family is also a fan of the YoKids line for a quick snack, breakfast on-the-go, or frozen as an after-dinner treat, and I was thrilled to learn they recently reduced the sugar profile of these yogurts, putting them at between 25% to 40% less sugar than the leading kids’ yogurt. Check out their whole product like, and where to buy, at Stonyfield.com.