My name is Kate Wall. I have always been a ‘foodie’ and love to cook, however in more recent years I have developed a real interest in nutrition, so it has become not all about cooking to make delicious food (which hasn’t changed), I’ve just moved it on another level to learn more about how to use food to be healthy. I am currently training to become a nutritionist. I am working on my MSc Nutrition with Public Health Management.
I think this interest has really increased since having two children, as I feel as a parent we have a very real responsibility to feed our children healthily, educate them in making the right choices and most importantly teach them to have a healthy relationship with food so they can take a balanced approach towards it. There are so many extreme viewpoints these days, we are often told to follow this diet, don’t eat this food group-the lists goes on, it’s enough to confuse and scare anybody. I feel we need to get back to basics and just teach our children to eat good nutritious food in a balanced way. If we can get them to understand this from an early age and create good habits, then this will stick with them through life.
I have experience of working with children, and this is where my passion lies, as I worked as a nurse on a paediatric critical care unit for 12 years. I was obviously working with very sick children, but I learnt the importance of nutrition on so many processes in the body. It’s not just about weight-good nutrition is vital to everything we do. For example, it can improve sleep, mental health and learning-all these can have a huge impact on a child’s self esteem and abilities socially, so therefore their ability to make friends, which increases their confidence, which increases all of the above further-a positive feedback loop. We are talking not only about physical fitness, but bringing up our children to be happy, well-rounded, confident adults. This has to be a priority as we are now seeing huge increases in anxiety and depression in my generation and below. This is due to many factors, but with a holistic approach, of which I believe nutrition plays a huge role in, we may be able to help improve their futures, so they can meet their potential.
We can’t ignore the importance of the physical well-being of a child, and with childhood obesity and type 2 diabetes rising, we do need to do something to stop the trend. It is not acceptable that diet currently poses a bigger risks to UK families health and life expectancy than anything else. We have the knowledge to change this, and we need to empower children to put this into practice. If you are confused about nutrition then enjoy the blog together, learn with them, and make positive changes for the whole family.
I believe if children can take ownership, and be involved with the process then they will be more on board. Of course, it would need you as parents, caregivers, teachers etc to be involved, but they need a forum to learn, share thoughts and ideas, have conversations, debates and most importantly fun. This is why I am starting my blog, Scoffalot. I will obviously update it regularly, but hopefully the children will also get involved, suggest what they want to learn or talk about. It will feature things such as food of the month, quizzes and puzzles, food experiments, food jokes, recipe links, and what the children have been eating that week. Hopefully, I will create a community of ‘scoffers’, who come back each week to learn something new about food. So please have a look and invite your children to start ‘scoffing’.
Thanks for reading!