We’ve all been there – that treading on thin ice moment between having the time of their life and total meltdown. Am I talking about you or your little one, that’s the question. In all too many cases, what we’re seeing could be plain old tiredness, a change in stimulation level (post screen time!), dehydration, or maybe it’s a blood sugar crash.
I have written at length on this site and teach in-depth in the Culinary Nutrition Expert Program and the abridged version, Everyday Culinary Nutrition, how critical it is, no matter your diet of choice, to manage and stabilize blood sugar. It’s important to also recognize as a caregiver of a little one, that anything we experience in our body, children experience in 10x magnification.
Children, and many adults, are unable to recognize what they’re feeling inside and express it, let alone identify the root cause. With children, this is amplified as they also don’t yet have full emotional modulation. It’s all laid out in the open, often mirroring exactly how we’re feeling.
What does all of this have to do with the best gluten-free zucchini muffin ever? Having a low glycemic, protein- and fat-rich, nutrient-dense snack at the ready, for the times of day you know your little one (or partner, colleague, or you!) are prone to the crashes that can result in reaction-driven behaviour, can prevent a meltdown.
Of course, emotional expression in little ones is totally normally and at times essential. We want them to feel safe and free to fully express themselves how they need to in the moment (while also staying safe of course). However, these explosive emotional expressions could also simply be due to a sugar crash. If you can ensure the blood sugar is balanced, you’ll have a better idea of the true source of what the child is feeling and the magnitude of it in their life.
What’s really interesting is that when we can naturally keep things calmer through diet, lifestyle and mindful habits taught and practiced in young children, it impacts how their brains are physically wired. They can strengthen the synapses that support calmer responses.
Again, all of this applies 100% to fully grown humans. If we can manage our blood sugar and also practice our own mindful habits, our brains can rewire in such a way that we become less reactive and can think more clearly.
It’s incredible how our brains and bodies optimize functionality, cognition, perception and calm response over aggressive reaction when we have the optimal fuel going in, at the right intervals. What are these intervals? Well that depends on you. We’re all different, and have our unique needs. Tuning in with a clear mind is the first key step in determining what works best.
In the meantime, let’s start with this muffin that loads in the good stuff!
Note On Recipe Substitutions and Modifications
I have not tested this recipe in any other way than how it is written. I do not know how it will work if you substitute other flours or make it vegan. If you attempt a variation, it is your experiment. Please be sure to share your results in the comments and we can update the post accordingly.Print