More important books for parents to own:
Denise Punger, M.D. is a GreenSmoothieGirl 12 Stepper and a brave new voice in modern medicine. She’s a board certified doctor married to another medical doctor, but she’s also a mother who has breastfed for 12 years and delivered her last baby via home birth. She’s an advocate of home birth, doulas, breastfeeding, and trusting a mother’s instincts. Her Permission to Mother: Going Byond the Standard-of-Care to Nurture Our Children is an important book for young mothers to own.
Eric Schlosser’s Fast Food Nation and Chew on This: Everything You Don’t Want to Know About Fast Food are geared towards teens. Give your kid an incentive to read one or both of these books. My 11- and 13-year old kids loved these best-selling exposes and never wanted to set foot in a fast-food establishment again. Okay, they never set foot in fast-food establishments anyway, except to make a bathroom stop on a trip. They inspired my oldest daughter to become a vegetarian, and she later converted her sister. Written for preteens and teens, this is an excellent education in why you want to avoid all fast food. I overheard my daughter after she read Chew On This telling a friend regarding the friend’s sugar habit, “You know that children diagnosed with diabetes by the age of 8 shorten their lives by 25-30 years, don’t you?” (Heh heh, my evil educational plot is working!) Too bad the author states in the introduction that his favorite meal is a fast food burger.
Ron Seaborn’s The Children’s Health Food Book is a seriously weird book! A friend recommended it to me, and when I picked it up at a health food store, my then-four-year old son went crazy for it. I read it to him several times a day, because he begged me non-stop, until I just couldn’t take it any more and was making up my own words. The antiheroes are the Starch Creature, the Dairy Goon, the Meat Monster, and the Sugar Demon. Of course, the vegetable, fruit, and whole-grain superheroes come in and save the day. This book is good for younger kids–just beware that the preschool teacher might call you and say your kid is scaring the other kids by pointing out how bad their snacks are (this actually happened to me).