The Gerber Life Parenting Blog

Health & Safety

Tips to keep your family healthy and safe

When days get hectic it's hard to find time to prepare healthy meals or stay active as a family. Gerber Life puts quick, healthy recipes and workout routines for you and your family right at your fingertips. We also share tips for helping to keep your family safe, such as how to avoid everyday dangers. Because it's so important to take good care of your family, we hope that our tips for raising healthy families will give you the kind of practical information that can help you do just that.

  1. Life Lessons Learned from 2020

    April 5, 2021

    It’s safe to say, 2020 was a challenging year for just about everyone. But for those of us with children, it meant a lot, and we mean a LOT, of quality time with our little ones. Yet through it all, we learned some valuable lessons that we’ll take with us when things get back to “normal”.


    Here are some of the things we will hold on to:


    1. Things don’t always go as planned. And that’s okay.

    The thing about unprecedented events is that they don’t come with a manual. We were trying to help kids learn remotely while often adjusting to new work arrangements ourselves. Do they have the link to their class? Do they know when to come back from recess? Oh no, I need to feed the kids during a work meeting!

    We recognized that we were all new to this and learned to be more forgiving — of ourselves and each other.


    2. You don’t need to be perfect. You just need to be there.

    Did you try to help your child with their schoolwork and realize how much you’ve forgotten since your school days? Or that you don’t have the time to make them the healthiest dinner with the workday that doesn’t seem to end and the housework that’s impossible to keep up with? It’s okay — what mattered was that you tried.

    We learned that you can’t do everything every day. The important thing is that you’re there for your children.


    3. Kids can be pretty resilient.

    As parents, our instinct is to protect our little ones. But the pandemic has affected all of us, including the children. We’ve asked kids to change how they do school, playdates, birthday parties and more. And they’ve impressed us by adapting to the new normal and making the best of the situation.

    The kids are going through a lot. Let’s recognize the sacrifices they’ve made and take heart knowing that they may be little, but they can be pretty tough when they need to be.


    4. Before you take care of anyone else, take care of yourself.

    In emergencies, we’re told to put on our life vests first before helping others. After all, we wouldn’t be very helpful if our own needs aren’t met. The same goes for taking care of our young ones during a pandemic. It’s tough for the kids, but the adults are going through a lot too. So it’s okay to say, “I’d love to help you right now, but can you give me a moment?”

    It’s important for everyone to see that self-care for mom and dad means better care for all.


    5. Nothing refreshes like fresh air.

    2020 was the year that so many families rediscovered the classic pastime of taking walks. When “work”, “school” and “home” are all in the same place, we needed a way to unwind. And with the extra walking, we stayed fit, talked to neighbors and maybe discovered things we wouldn’t have otherwise.

    Who knew? Simply walking does the body and mind a lot of good.


    6. There’s a lot to be thankful for.

    When times are tough, we need to appreciate the little things. Maybe a neighbor who puts up signs in their window, a long-lost friend who reconnected by video chat, or seeing a new flower bloom on a daily walk.

    Things weren’t perfect, but we learned to look out for the positive. And more than anything we have a newfound appreciation for being around the people we love.

    What’s something you learned from your children and yourself while you were home?


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    Categories: Health & Safety
  2. Why Walking the Dog is Great for Both of You

    January 19, 2021

    February 22 is National Walk Your Dog Day! This is an annual reminder that taking a daily walk with your best friend is a great idea. Why? Let’s count the ways.


    1. It’s a Great Way to Start the Day

    Your pup needs to get outside in the morning no matter what. That means you’re guaranteed to wake up for an a.m. stroll, get your blood flowing, maybe even see the sun come up. Just like that, you’ve gotten your body to move right before breakfast!


    2. You Get Your Steps in

    Did we mention exercise? Taking your four-legged buddy outside gets your body moving, helping you stay active and healthy. The Department of Health and Human Services guidelines recommends 150 to 300 minutes of moderate exercise a week — that comes out to roughly 21 to 42 minutes a day which is approximately as long as two daily walks.


    3. It Boosts Your Mood

    Getting outside is essential for your mental health. Taking breaks with your fluffy pal during the day or in the evening helps you refresh your mind and lower your stress level.


    4.  …and Your Dog’s Mood too!

    A well-walked dog is a happy dog. Regular time outside helps your pooch let out their energy and allows them to relax when they’re home.


    5. It’s a Chance to Bond and Socialize

    Walking with your furry friend helps you build a stronger relationship. It also gives both of you opportunities to get to know neighbors, both human and canine. Just keep a safe distance, of course!


    Don’t have a dog? That’s okay! You can still enjoy the benefits of walking and it’s one of the easiest ways to improve your mental health. Just put on a pair of comfortable shoes and take a stroll around your neighborhood.

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    Categories: Health & Safety
  3. Refresh Your Resolutions for 2021

    December 17, 2020

    It’s the New Year and usually that means it’s time to set New Year’s resolutions. This year let’s refresh the idea of resolutions and instead of focusing on intangible goals like “lose weight” or “spend less money,” let’s refocus on what matters most: your family and your health — both physical and mental.

    Here are a few ideas to get you started:


    Prioritize Self-care

    When we’re busy with work and family, we often forget to take care of ourselves. Challenge yourself to set aside time for your wellness each day. It can be as little as 15 minutes to meditate, a half-hour walk around your neighborhood, or an hour spent on a hobby or passion project each night. How long you spend isn’t as important as simply making time for yourself.  Quick tip: Set up a calendar reminder in your phone to help you form the habit.


    Do it as a Family

    Having someone to hold you accountable makes it easier to stick to your goals and resolutions. What if you turned achieving goals into a family challenge? See who can read the most books in a month, do the most pushups or go the longest without screen time. Whatever you choose, the friendly competition and accountability will help keep you on track. Plus, getting to spend time with family is an added bonus!


    Practice Positivity

    In our experience, the best resolutions are less about milestones or achievements and more about forming better habits. One habit we could all benefit from is positive thinking. If you’re like most, you might get stressed out by focusing on the negatives. Instead, what if you made it a goal to train your brain to think more positively?


    For example, challenge yourself to think of one reason you’re proud of yourself each day. Or practice finding silver linings when something seemingly negative happens. These small changes can help positively impact your day-to-day.


    These are just a few ways you can refresh the way you approach New Year’s resolutions and kick off the year on a positive note. New Year’s resolutions have always been about being our better, happier selves. This year don’t stress over hitting a milestone. Instead, focus on the big picture—yourself and your family.

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  4. Finding Moments of Gratitude this Thanksgiving

    November 3, 2020

    The holidays are upon us and after a year unlike any we have experienced, it’s important to take a step back, be present, and reflect on what you can be thankful for. Thanksgiving provides an opportunity to do just that. This Thanksgiving, instead of stressing out about the turkey or hosting family, focus on finding moments of gratitude.

    Here are a few little things you can do to lean into the spirit of the holiday:


    1. Give Back

    It’s safe to say everyone’s been affected by recent events in some way. However, some families have been impacted more than others. You could shop for groceries for a vulnerable neighbor, start a clothing drive, or donate to a food bank. Giving back to your community is a great way to show appreciation for what you are thankful for.


    2. Appreciate the Little Things

    What do you enjoy doing? Is it drinking a hot cup of coffee, eating your favorite pie, or spending quality time with your family? Small pleasures can help motivate you to make the best of each day. You can also make a difference in someone’s day with something as simple as saying hi to your neighbor. Thanksgiving is a great opportunity to acknowledge the things you might take for granted.


    3. Disconnect from Social Media

    Reading and posting on social media is fun, but it’s healthy to take a screen break sometimes. Putting down your phone and letting go of your FOMO can help you be in the moment.


    4. Reconnect with Someone

    Do you have friends or family you haven’t spoken to in a while? Pick up the phone and call them. It’s important to tell your loved ones how much you love and care for them. They’ll probably be glad you reached out.


    5. Cherish Memories

    This Thanksgiving might look and feel different from past celebrations, but it still gives us a chance to reflect and look back on the memories and traditions that bring your loved ones together. You can take yourself back in time by looking at old photos, recreating family recipes, or asking a family member to tell you a story about their life.


    Let’s take time to show appreciation for the little things that keep us going and bring us joy. Wishing a Happy and Healthy Thanksgiving to you and your loved ones!

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  5. 10 Ways to Improve Your Mental Health

    October 1, 2020

    If you’re like most people, you probably have a lot on your mind. From your daily responsibilities to everything that is happening in the world. That’s tough on your mental health. With World Mental Health Day on October 10th, this is as good a time as any to give yourself an emotional wellness check. Follow these 10 simple ways to make sure you and your loved ones are in a good place.


    1. Take a walk

    Be sure to take regular breaks and step outside, especially if you’re spending a lot of time on screens. Walking can help you feel more relaxed, confident and energetic. Moving around is great for both body and mind. Just remember to follow local public health regulations when you’re out.


    2. Eat well, sleep well

    Keeping up your physical health is important to your mental health and vice versa. Make it a point to eat fruits, vegetables, proteins rich in omega-3 fatty acids and challenge yourself to get to bed 30 minutes earlier than you normally do.


    3. Stay in touch with friends and family

    Are you talking with friends and family regularly? We can’t overstate the importance of having a support system, especially if you’re isolated from your loved ones. Simply having someone to listen to you can be incredibly empowering!


    4. Do something you’re good at

    Everyone needs a confidence boost now and then. Doing something that’s in your wheelhouse can give you a sense of achievement and remind you how much you contribute to the world.


    5. Do something nice for someone else

    When things are tough, every bit of positivity helps. Performing a good deed like helping a neighbor, supporting a worthy cause or even something as small as complimenting a stranger, can give you a sense of purpose.


    6. Focus on things in your control

    When you receive bad news in the headlines or your personal life, it’s important to separate things that you can control from the things you can’t. You can’t change what’s already happened but starting a petition or learning a new skill might help in the future.

    You might not solve every problem but taking positive action beats feeling helpless.


    7. Write down what you’re thankful for

    Use a pen and paper to avoid fixating on the negative. Take a few minutes each day and jot down all the things that made you happy. Chances are, you’re overlooking some good things happening in your life.


    8. Assess your feelings

    You might have been taught to “be strong,” and to keep a positive attitude. You may not want to feel like a burden. But describing how you feel is the first step to taking charge of your emotional well-being. Simply opening up can feel like a huge weight off your shoulders and encourage people around you to do the same.


    9. Ask for help

    Asking for help doesn’t come naturally to everyone. But speaking to a professional can make a world of difference. And you don’t have to feel alone: 20 million adults receive counseling and other mental health services each year in the United Statesand you can reach many great therapists online.


    10. Be kind to yourself and others

    One of the most important steps you can take is accepting that you won’t do everything right every time. This goes for everyone else in your life — they might need a pick-me-up, too. When you’re more forgiving, everyone benefits. We’re all in this together!


    1National Institute of Health

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