Chef Bob Roy offers healthy eating tips for families

By Lisa Stone - ReminderNews
Enfield - posted Thu., Oct. 3, 2013
Chef Bob Roy gives families healthy eating tips
Chef Bob Roy gives helpful tips about keeping the family healthy through good food choices. Photo by Lisa Stone.

People at the Enfield Public Library on Sept. 25 learned how to better feed their families, thanks to healthy eating tips offered by chef Bob Roy.

He and his wife, Karen, once owned a restaurant in Enfield at the corner of Enfield Street and Bernadino Avenue. Roy prepared nutritious meals at Central Connecticut State University in New Britain for almost two years. In that amount of time, he served 23,000 meals to students. He realized then that there was a need to educate families on proper nutrition and show them how to make it affordable.

“I am really concerned that families are not feeding their kids properly,” said Roy.  “Sodas are a major offender. They contain so many dangerous chemicals and are extremely high in sugar. The labels are so misleading. They will tell you how many calories and how much sugar they contain for each serving, however, each can or bottle contains over two servings.”

Some people listening to Roy speak took notes. They were hoping to walk away with some new information that may help them to eat better and feel healthier. “I am trying to eat right and do the right thing,” said Lorraine Gervais. “I am hoping to get healthier and learn some preparation tricks.”

“My husband knows a lot of information about food,” said Karen Roy. “I lend him my support because I believe in what he is doing.”

Even fruit juice can have an excessive amount of sugar. “What people don’t realize is the average diet should only have between 25g and 37.5g of sugar in a 24-hour period.  Often, the labels will reveal artificial coloring and additives. It is really important to read labels and look for the most natural foods as possible.”

According to Roy, the highest-quality foods for protein are beef, chicken – fresh and frozen - egg whites, as well as whole eggs, fish, fresh turkey breast and soy beans.  The least refined carbohydrates would be fresh beans, brown rice, fruit, hot cereals, vegetables and yams. The healthiest fats are found in avocado, flaxseed oil, natural nut butter, nuts and olive oil. The foods that are low-quality and are the most processed and most refined are protein powder, protein bars, low-fat and no-fat ice cream, potato chips, tortilla chips, white rice, butter, margarine, mayonnaise, salad dressing and sour cream.

Sodas are one of the worst culprits for the delivery of sugar into children’s diets.  According to the “Kick the Can” project, “Sugar-sweetened beverages are a major contributor to childhood obesity. Compared to children who rarely drink sugar-sweetened beverages, children who drink at least one serving of sugar-sweetened beverages per day have 55-percent increased odds of being overweight and obese.”

“I hope that people will stop giving soda to children,” said Roy. “They should look for alternatives to sugary drinks. Also, if families cook enough nutritious meals to last the week and refrigerate them, they can pull them out each night and have a balanced diet without spending too much time cooking. With these small tips, a family can feel better and live better.”

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