whoever you want to be…

Having kids is good for your health

Having kids is bad for your health. I’m assuming it’s the lack of sleep. All I know is that before I had kids I looked ok. I mean, I’m the least photogenic person ever. But for someone in their late 30s who drank a lot and smoked, and liked late nights and bad food and let’s call it a ‘media lifestyle’, I was looking pretty good. Fresh faced even.

Then I had kids and it all went to pot. Grey hair, wrinkles, baggy skin and saggy eyes, blobby bits and spotty bits and ugh. You name it basically.

I’m pretty sure it’s the lack of sleep. Sleep seems to be a very good thing for a body. And I love sleep. It’s probably my favourite thing to do. But these days even when I get a chance to do it, apparently the ability has deserted me. Bloody kids.

It’s customary, isn’t it, to moan about having kids. It’s sort of like a sport. Like moaning about how rubbish our husbands or partners are. Apparently the mums in our playground do it so much – and me along with them – that one day my daughter asked me if I liked children. I was shocked. How awful for her to think her mum complained so much about having kids that she wondered if her mum really even liked children. I try not to do it any more.

And yes, it is true of course that having kids does involve a lot of sacrifices. That’s why I waited until I’d done all (well most of) the selfish stuff that I wanted to do before I had kids. People had always drummed into me about how much hard work it is and how much you have to give up. Then when I did finally have kids I was pissed off that no one had ever mentioned that also, having kids is a lot of fun. If I’d known that I might have had them a bit sooner. But there we go.

So yes, whilst it is true that for the past eight years the only films I’ve seen at the cinema have been rated U, I realised the other day that I also have to thank my kids for making me do a lot of stuff that I probably would not have done were it not for them.


eating my 5-a-day

stopping smoking

losing weight

taking up running

playing football in the garden

going swimming

lots of other energetic, healthy things I would not be doing otherwise.

I do these things because I want to give them a healthy lifestyle and a good start in life. I do them because I want to set them a good example that will encourage them to eat well and be active as they get older. And I do them because I would like to be around for a long time to see my girls become the amazing women I think they may turn out to be.

So it turns out that having kids is good for your health. I am fitter and I weigh less than I have done for a long time. I still look like crap, but you can’t have everything, can you?

With my freelance journalism hat on I write a lot about catering, out-of-home dining and school dinners. It’s my aim every month to write something that touches on healthy eating. Whether it’s debunking the latest diet craze, asking is it ok for your child to always eat the jacket potato at school, or attempting to unearth the facts behind the latest doctrine that says a) it’s ok for pregnant women to drink a glass of wine or b) it’s absolutely never ok for pregnant women to drink a glass of wine. If you have anything you’d like answered or a subject you think I should cover, do feel free to let me know.

About siobh1970

I am freelance journalist Siobhan O'Neill. I write a lot about catering and school dinners and associated issues like nutrition and health. You can find out more about me via my website www.siobhan-oneill.co.uk.

4 comments on “Having kids is good for your health

  1. Betty Herbert
    September 13, 2012

    I’m impressed – personally, the best I’ve managed is slightly more toned upper arms from bench-pressing a baby to entertain him. And I woke up this morning to find my hair was falling out…

  2. siobh1970
    September 13, 2012

    Thanks Betty, maybe I should qualify that my oldest was two and a half before I lost loads of weight and I only started running this year. I realised that I couldn’t use the ‘I’ve had a baby’ excuse for being a bit of a chubster when she was off to nursery!
    If your baby is still a baby then try not to worry too much about the hair loss. Once your hormones start going back to normal then the thick head of hair your grew while pregnant unfortunately turns tail. I was shocked at the handfulls that seemed to fill the plughole after a shower.
    If you don’t think it’s that and it continues for a bit longer than you’d like then maybe check it out?

  3. Kate
    September 13, 2012

    If I’m tired, I’m hungry. As soon as I dip below eight hours of sleep, I have to eat all of the carbohydrates in the area while complaining about how I’m eating all of the carbohydrates in the area. It is probably a good thing I don’t have children!

  4. siobh1970
    September 19, 2012

    Ha! I did have to get fat before I could lose loads of weight. That was the downside!

Comments are closed.


This entry was posted on September 13, 2012 by in Bea Delicious, Bea Family, Bea Healthy and tagged , , .
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