Eat Your Way Around the World: China

“If you are planning for a year, sow rice; if you are planning for a decade, plant trees; if you are planning for a lifetime, educate people.” –Chinese Proverb.

As one of the oldest continuous cultures on earth, the Chinese have some have some useful wisdom to impart. Their study of nutrition, longevity and flavorful food combine into a philosophy about health that has worked effectively for thousands of years. The Chinese have something to teach us about balance, and that concept is beautifully illustrated in the food.

Children really love eating healthy when they have a relationship with what they are eating. A simple stir-fry with carrot for orange, red pepper for, well red, and sweet peas for green, presents fresh, alive colors and flavors as a pretty warm invitation, even for younger and pickier eaters. Here is a great video from Stanford Medicine with tips for getting kids to eat their veggies and a stir fry recipe:

For slightly older kids, introduce a little Yin and Yang with Sweet and Sour Chicken. It’s a crowd pleaser, and super fun to prepare. The Food Network has a delicious recipe here:

And something else to think about when it comes to the family meal: slowing down and really enjoying it. As another Chinese Proverb says: “The more you eat, the less flavor; the less you eat, the more flavor.” Rich tastes and moderate portions make a meal more enjoyable.

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