January 10, 2017
One of the most important steps parents can take to raise food-smart, healthy kids is to teach their children about nutrition. By creating a supportive environment that allows children to easily make nutritious choices, families can foster positive relationships with healthy food.
Kids will eat foods that are easily accessible. Instead of burying fruit in the fridge, set a bowl of apples, oranges, or bananas on the counter. Stock the pantry at kid-level with healthy snacks such as granola bars, mixed nuts, or dried fruits.
Reward your kids with a proud smile and plenty of praise when they make good nutrition decisions, like choosing fruits, vegetables, low-fat dairy products, or whole grains.
When kids choose unhealthy foods, resist the temptation to nag. Instead, redirect them to healthier options. For example, if your child reaches for salty potato chips and fatty dip, offer a better option, like salsa and baked tortilla chips. If your child is craving a sweet treat, offer fresh strawberries instead of candy. Instead of french fries, try making sweet potato fries in the oven.
Using food as a reward now can lead to weight problems later. Instead of offering candy, cakes, or other unhealthy options to commemorate a special achievement, make the reward something physical and fun. Take the family on a camping trip, play a game of tag, or visit a park.
Kids who eat dinner with their families have better nutrition. If eating together is not already a tradition in your home, start by designating one night a week as family dinner night. Serve healthy, well-balanced dishes and enjoy bonding together over the meal!
Instead of labeling foods as "good" or "bad," teach good nutrition by tying foods to the things that are important to your child. Talk about how eating healthy makes you feel better. Explain that the protein in chicken and the calcium in broccoli helps make their bodies strong for sports. The vitamins and antioxidants in apples and oranges can make their hair shine, and a healthy breakfast can keep them focused during an important exam.
Children mimic what they see their parents doing. Be an advocate, practice what you preach by making healthy choices at home.
Categories: Health | Tags: | Posted by: admin