Helping Your Kids Eat Healthier
We all know how difficult it can be to get our children to eat foods that are good for their health. Children prefer to eat what they like. Usually, healthy food doesn’t appeal to them as much as “fun” junk food. So how do we make healthy choices appeal to them? It’s all about creating new habits, getting your children accostumed to choosing healthier foods.
The first step towards creating healthy habits is to set a good example. Children’s number one instinct is to imitate. This means that if you have unhealthy eating habits, your child will too. Similarly, if you make the conscious effort to make healthy choices, that will also influence them. You’re not going to have much luck telling your child to eat fruits and vegetables if you’re eating chips and soda!
Another way to improve eating choices is to cook regular family meals. Home cooking is much healthier than eating out or ordering takeout. Restaurant food tends to have more sugar, salt and fat. Involving your kids in preparing dinner is also a great way to show them the importance of a healthy meal.
Keeping a wide variety of healthy snacks at arms reach is a good way to avoid high calorie snacking. When kids get home from school, they search the cabinets for a snack. Instead of having chips and other unhealthy items readily available, have fruits and whole grain snacks.
The next item is something all parents have done: making the child sit at the table until they eat everything on their plate. Doctors say this is NOT good for them. A child will eat when they are hungry. Forcing them to eat more than their stomachs want at that moment is actually encouraging them to eat when they are not hungry- which creates an unhealthy habit.
These are all ways to improve our children’s health. If you have a nanny or housekeeper that feeds the children you should certainly pass this information onto them as well, since they are someone who is an influential part of your child’s life. Just as they can pick up on your habits, they will pick up on the nanny’s habits as well.