Pears: A Parent’s BFF
Pears really are one of nature’s most pear-fect foods. In addition to being an excellent source of fiber, they offer other important nutrients like vitamin C and potassium. One medium-size pear contains 6 grams of fiber or about 21% of the recommended daily amount. That serving size weighs in at just about 100 calories and is completely fat and cholesterol free. For all of these reasons, pears can become a parent’s BFF.
Reasons for Parents to Love Pears:
- Let’s start with Mom. Many new mothers experience bowel irregularity. To get things moving, new mothers can reach for a natural and flavorful fiber-filled aid: pears. Getting enough fiber, staying hydrated and exercise can all help alleviate post-partum constipation naturally.
- Pears are a healthy snack choice for the whole family. Beyond their nutritional attributes, pears offer another advantage: enough sweetness and flavor to tempt the tiniest taste buds in your family. Pears can add natural sweetness and depth when blended into a breakfast smoothie. They can be sliced and eaten fresh as a snack, or those slices can be tossed into a lunch salad for extra fiber, flavor and texture. Pears can also make a rich side dish for dinner when roasted or grilled. More recipe ideas are available at usapears.org, including desserts featuring fresh and baked pears.
- Pears are a perfect addition to a “first foods” list. As a naturally sweet, nutrient-dense and versatile food, pears can be pureed (with or without other ingredients) for an easily swallowed spoonful. Pears can also be served as ripe, soft slices during baby-led weaning, or diced for older babies practicing their pincer grasp.
To enjoy the best flavor from a pear, it’s important to eat it at peak ripeness. Fortunately, finding a perfectly ripe pear is easy, just “Check the Neck”! Pears are one of the few fruits that don’t ripen on the tree, rather the best way to ripen a pear is by storing it at room temperature. A pear is ripe and ready to eat when it gives a bit with gentle pressure applied near the stem.
Anytime is a good time to stock up on pears. They can be stored in the fridge to slow ripening and put on the counter near other ripening fruit to speed the process. The pear will get the hint, and the whole family will benefit.