Health is wealth. This is 100% true. When it comes to kids, it is of far more importance than anything else. As a parent, one of the most important things you do is to help your children learn healthy eating habits. The good news is that parents don’t need a special degree to raise healthy kids.
Following are some basic guidelines that can help you encourage your kids to eat right and maintain a healthy weight:
- Control their eating habits: You decide which foods to buy and when to serve them. Though kids will not agree to their parents to eat nutritious foods, tell them about the benefits of healthy foods. Kids won’t go hungry. They’ll eat what’s available in the cupboard and fridge at home. If their favorite snack isn’t all that nutritious, you can still buy it once in a while so they don’t feel deprived.
- Start them young: Food preferences are developed early in life, so offer variety to your pals. Likes and dislikes begin to form when kids are babies. You may need to serve a new food a few different times for a child to accept it. Don’t force a child to eat, but offer a few bites. In this way, they will start liking healthy foods.
- Offer sweets: Offer sweets to your kids. Yes, you heard it right. Occasional sweets are fine but don’t turn dessert into the main reason for eating dinner. Try to make them stay neutral about foods.
- Kids do as you do: Be a role model and eat healthy. Kids will definitely follow your eating habits. When trying to teach good eating habits, try to set the best possible example. Choose nutritious snacks, eat at the table, and don’t skip meals. In this way, you will be able to make your kids grow healthy.
As the parent, it’s your job to:
- Set regular meal and snack times that work for the whole family. Share mealtimes and eat with your children.
- Offer a balanced diet.
- Offer food in ways they can manage easily. For example, cut into pieces.
- Help your children learn to use a spoon or cup so they can eat independently.
- Include your child in age-appropriate food preparation and table setting.
- Avoid using dessert as a bribe. Serve healthy dessert choices, such as a fruit cup or yogurt.
- Avoiding fast-food restaurants.
- Shows your children the importance of enjoying mealtime with the family.
A word from SuperActive Kids:
Don’t stress too much if your child refuses a meal. Refrain from giving him something else in between meals just so that he eats. Just make sure to offer your child a variety of foods from all food groups to make sure he is getting the right nutrients. Your child’s doctor will monitor his growth at regular appointments and will let you know if there are any problems.