There are really two ways to go about snacking. One is to allow kids free reign over their own snacking. The second is to only offer kids one snack and if they don't like it... tough luck. Well, the method I settled on is somewhere in between the two.
I come from the belief it is the parent's responsibility to provide healthy foods, while it is the child's choice to eat those foods. So here's how I integrate this philosophy into our real life...
INTRODUCING..... THE SNACK BIN!
I have two small bins - one in the refrigerator and the other in the pantry. These bins are filled with snacks that I have chosen and when snack time comes around it makes no difference to me what he chooses. This is one way I allow my child choices over what he eats, while still fitting within the parameters I have set.
The variety changes each week, but once something is gone, it's gone. We also have fresh fruit and vegetables which I regularly offer, but I also insist on a fruit and vegetable at every meal so if his snack doesn't include one I still know h's getting the nutrients he needs otherwise.
Here's what's in our snack bins this week:
Cooling off in the refrigerator
A peek in the pantry
So when snack times rolls around I allow my son one choice from either basket. He totally gets it and you can tell he enjoys having the choice of what to eat.
This method has also come in handy when pacing lunches and when we have sitters. Overall, I try not to keep a bunch of junk food in the house, but this is not to say my child never gets those foods. Another philosophy of mine os 80/20. 80 percent of the time we make healthy choices and the other 20 percent of the time I don't stress about it.
Hope this helps your snack attack - and keep growing healthy kids from the inside out!