Hangry? Yes. Hangry! The term that so clearly defines your child’s expression of their innermost demons brought forth from a deep, dark cave of insatiable hunger. You know the feeling yourself. It’s 3:00 p.m. and your kids are arguing in the car. You realize you have to gear yourself up for homework, making dinner and after school activities and a feeling of hanger starts to creep up into the driver’s seat. Suddenly, you open your mouth and you sound like Darth Vader, “Kids…I am your MOTHAAA!!!”
It took me years to realize the food I was shoveling into my mouth was actually impacting my mood and doing so in significant ways. When I became a therapist and then a mother I became consumed with educating myself on nutrition. As I read and read, I learned that others were just beginning to write about what I knew to instinctively be true- there is a mood and food connection. Eureka! I could help change my children’s mood, my own mood, my client’s mood through proper nutrition and holistic healing. What does that mean? It means that the feelings of anxiety, irritability, depression and stress could be altered. We are not powerless. We can create change.
We can shape and shift our children’s brains through healthy lifestyle habits and a solid diet. Is it so much more than that? Yes. Can a handful of walnuts suddenly relieve years of depression. No. But we have a beginning in confronting the task at hand. Before your Black Friday becomes Black Saturday step back and start to connect the dots in your own home. What do you see in the behavior and feelings of your children? And how does that weave itself into the feeding of your family? Sitting around the Thanksgiving table we realize that nourishment is the fabric of our lives. Let’s not leave the table feeling “hangry!”