Holiday Shopping Tips: Happy Kids and Healthy Brains

Holiday shopping is once again upon us—as your kids make their lists and write their letters to Santa, could the type of gifts they receive affect their brain development, not to mention how home life will be for everyone in the months ahead?

“Yes”, says Dr. Marcia Slattery, UW Health Professor of Child/Adolescent Psychiatry and Pediatrics. “A child’s brain goes through massive developmental changes throughout childhood and adolescence, and the type and variety of experiences a child has can influence the pathways and connections in the brain”.

Parents should keep this in mind as they set out on the challenge of holiday shopping for their children. The goal: selecting gifts that are fun, enjoyable AND promote healthy brain development.

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Healthy Holiday Eating Tips for Families

Healthy Holiday Eating

Starting with Halloween, it can sometimes feel as if parents are struggling against overwhelming forces in order to keep children eating healthy. We move straight from the pumpkin buckets overflowing with candy, into Thanksgiving with the dining tables overflowing with turkey, trimmings and pie. From there, it can be an endless parade of holiday parties filled with cookies and rich foods. Add traveling and extended family into the mix, with well-meaning relatives who encourage a little overindulging here and there, it can be easy to simply give in and go with the flow.

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