Red light, green light, eat right!

"It's a great way to help kids learn how to choose healthy foods," said Dr. LuAnn Labian with the Traverse Area Pediatric & Adolescent Clinic. "It's a fun game for the whole family to play so that they are choosing the right foods."

In this week's House call, we're discussing the "Red Light, Green Light, Eat Right" approach to healthy eating. B

ased on the traffic light, foods are categorized as Green Light (Healthy), Yellow Light (Moderately Healthy) or Red Light (Least Healthy).

"Green lights are all of your fruits and vegetables," said Dr. Labian. "Except there are two bad guys... Corn and potatoes."

Corn and potatoes are not considered green light foods when they are in the form of potato chips or french fries.

"Yellow light foods are a little bit harder to understand for kids because they are healthy foods, yet there is no portion size," said Dr. Labian. "Slow down, think about it... Eat slowly and control your portions."

Dr. Labian said never to tell a child any food is "bad." Instead, tell them that certain food is a "red light" food.

"Have them stop and think, 'How many red light foods have I had today?'," said Dr. Labian.

Red light foods consist of junk food like chips, crackers and candy.

"I usually tell kids one red light food per day is fine," said Dr. Labian. "You don't really need more than that."

For more information about "Red light, Green light, Eat right," click the video above. You can also click


For more information on the Traverse Area Pediatric & Adolescent Clinic, click


or call 231-421-8099.

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