Tips for Teaching Your Kids Healthy Eating Habits
By Genevieve Cunningham
When it comes to healthy eating, no one resists more than a child. They don't want grilled chicken, they want nuggets. They don't want vegetables, they want fries. But teaching kids how to eat healthy is really important. If they learn to eat the right foods when they're young, maintaining a healthy weight and body as an adult is so much easier. So how do you get started on this seemingly impossible task? If you need help getting your kids pointed down a healthy eating path, take a look at these tips to get started today.
It's OK to say no. Sometimes as parents, it's hard to tell our kids no. When they want another helping or one little dessert, we often give in. After all, how bad could it hurt? But that extra helping might be pushing them over the top of their appropriate caloric intake. Before saying yes, try to determine whether your kid is actually hungry or perhaps just likes the taste and act of eating. If you feel like it's the latter, say no and offer water or an activity instead.
Kids can only eat what we, as parents, buy for them. Skip the cookies and buy carrots. Leave the marshmallows at the store and bring home extra fruit instead. Opt for flavored water packets instead of juice boxes. Kids can't eat it if you don't offer it. So make sure your grocery shopping habits are smart and your home is full of healthy, nutritious options.
Let Them In
Let kids in on the task of planning and cooking. The more you involve your kids, the more they learn. And of course, the more they get to plan, the more likely they are to be excited about it. Have a family cooking night. Let them plan one meal per week. Or if you're up for the challenge, take them grocery shopping with you and let them help. It's not an easy thing to do, but letting them stay involved is one of the most effective for teaching them healthy habits that last.
Kids need help staying healthy. If left to their own devices, they'll eat ice cream and chips all day every day. Luckily, it's not impossible to teach healthy habits. It just takes planning and effort. Use these tips to help your kids learn healthy habits and your whole family will be able to lead healthier, happier loves in the future.
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