Greetings! I am on business travel this week. That is why I have decided to pull out a few noteworthy reader comments from my archives this week instead of the usual Five for Fridays.

I am constantly inspired by your comments and I learn a lot from them. I want to say thanks to those who spend time reading my posts and leave a comment behind with some advice, helpful tips or a question for further research. Some of them have their own blogs, which I highly recommend you to visit whenever you get a chance.

Enjoy, and feel free to leave a comment of your own.

  1. When a reader asked about food sources of vitamin D, Dr. Joanna Dolgoff listed these on her Ask the Expert post about Vitamin D deficiency
  2. Foods that contain Vitamin D include fortified milk, fortified yogurt, fortified breakfast cereals, wild salmon, canned tuna, cod liver oil, sun-dried shitake mushrooms and egg yolks. I think the fortified milk, yogurt and breakfast cereals will work best for a toddler!

  3. Nona Nita reminded us that dollars and sense is not everything in response to a Five for Fridays entry on home gardens:
  4. Even if growing my own tomatoes will cost more, I like the idea that I am going to use heirloom seeds that have not been hybridized. I will be able to keep the seeds from my produce to grow more next year. Not only will I get tomatoes like they used to taste when I was a kid, but saving the seeds from the tomatoes to use next year will be a great lesson in the cycle of life for my grandchild. Hooray to the Obamas for being great role models! Hooray to you for a great blog!

  5. Reiza was concerned about mercury in tuna when she read dietitian Janet Helms’s Ask the Expert article on sushi for toddlers
  6. My kids have all eaten sushi since infancy. You raised some issues I never even considered. I don’t think we’ll stop (my twins are over 5, but not my son), but we’ll definitely be asking more questions.

    One thing I want to know, though, is how much sushi with tuna would a child need to consume to be worried about mercury? I’ve always limited canned tuna, but I never thought mercury would be an issue with such small pieces like you find in sushi.

    In response, Janet Helm added:

    Thanks for your message. You’re right. The small amount of tuna in sushi should not be such a problem, since the recommended limit is 12 ounces per week. A 3-ounce portion is about the size of a deck of cards, so you can estimate the number of ounces your kids may be consuming.
    So if you’re not eating tuna more than once a week, you’re probably well within the “safe” range for mercury.

  7. Dr. Ayala offered her perspectives on healthy snacks and indulgences in response to a Five for Fridays entry on childhood obesity
  8. I don’t particularly like the term “snack”, as it can mean a small meal, which could be very healthy, or, more commonly, a highly processed packaged food you can eat on the go anytime and anywhere.

    I therefore don’t use “snacks”. No matter the name, I make the small meals between the other bigger meals healthy–fruits, vegetables, nuts, leftover food from yesterdays’ dinner. That’s what I serve my kids when they come home from school quite hungry and in between meals.

    As for the indulgences that I do think should not be denied–I call them dessert, and my kids call them “junk”. A good time to eat them is after the meal. I think there’s a place for ice-cream, chocolate, cake or whatever indulgence one fancies, but the key to really enjoying those and eating healthily is moderation and great quality. A small dessert (when a kid isn’t too hungry) made of high quality ingredients is a pleasure. Snacking on chips, cookies and donuts (even if low-fat)is not particularly satisfying, doesn’t hit the spot, and is just a bad habit.

  9. Alina shared her concern and hoped for better nutrition at schools in response to Ask the Expert article on managing concerns about daycare food
  10. I like the idea of bringing food to daycare but unfortunately many daycares do not allow found to be brought in. Also, a toddler wants to eat what everyone else is eating since the kids all eat together. Improving the nutrition of daycare (and all school food in general) is a very important topic. It would be nice for policy-makers and law-makers to embrace the need for this change!!

Photo source: Robert Whitehead on Flickr