Picnics & junk food – do they go together?

healthy food for picnic

Associating picnics with junk foods starts in childhood!

Do you remember that as a child you were super-excited about your bags being stuffed with Peppy, Pik Nik , Simba and Frooti or colas while you were going for a picnic? I clearly remember carrying all these and of course, gems and candies on our visits to hanging garden , Aarey milk colony or Aeroplane park in Mumbai.

So my association of fun or happiness with junk has been conditioned since childhood! Is it possible to change it now?

I am not suggesting that our parents purposely ruined our health but they were surely more ignorant and less exposed than the current lot. Presently, we do have more access to authentic information, family support, positive reinforcement. The information is available but whether we decide to process and implement it is our personal choice

A lot of new-age moms are packing chocolates, cookies, soft drinks, chips etc. in their kid’s picnic bags & this often leads to unhealthy consequences.

Is the child going to have less fun on a vacation if he did not have these in his bag? I do realize that sometimes peer pressure  forces mothers to give -in but some bargaining can be done to achieve a mutually amicable settlement between healthy and absolute junk. And this bargaining has to start early , else things can get worse later.

We find solace in food but actually natural and fresh foods have a true calming effect on our body. I would rather suggest that once- in- a- while indulgence in home made samosas/ batata vadas at get togethers is forgivable than filling plates with processed packaged snacks. Please remember, food cooked at home with love is hundred times healthier than any factory made food

Some healthy picnic snacks for children can be:

  • Homemade vegetable burgers
  • Mini idlis seasoned with chaat masala / schezwan sauce
  • Homemade veg noodles
  • Roasted / baked sweet potato chips seasoned with chaat masala
  • Paneer cutlets
  • Corn chaat
  • Onion uttapams
  • Methi muthias
  • Patra

Kids’ association with junk food begins early and it’s advisable to give them healthy alternatives, when the likelihood to consume junk food is high!


Stay healthy with eKincare – your personal health manager!

Author: drpoojachhawcharia

Dr Pooja Chhawcharia is the Senior Nutritionist at eKincare with over 7 years of experience in Nutrition education, diet counseling and research. She is a Registered Dietician with the Indian Dietetic Association and Certified Diabetes Educator recognized by the International Diabetes federation . She is also interested in ancillary sciences such as Yoga and Naturopathy.

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