Monday September 3, 2018
If you have kids, then you know how hard it is to raise them to eat well. We are overwhelmed each day by commercials for junk food, and grocery stores are papered with cartoon characters and bright colors all meant to entice children to eat sugary foods. These marketing tactics help contribute to the nation’s obesity problem.
So, if you want to set your kids on the right path to eating properly, here are some tips on how to help them:
French Fries Aren’t a Vegetable
When you eat at a restaurant, then you know that most kids meals come with French fries as the standard side. Try frequenting restaurants that offer healthy alternatives like steamed broccoli, apples, or carrot sticks. It is important to teach your kids early that veggies aren’t foods to be feared.
Fruit Juice Isn’t Always Healthy
A lot of people think that they are helping out their kids by giving them fruit juice instead of soda. The problem is that many fruit juices contain just as much sugar as soda does, and diet drinks only add a lot of chemicals into their system. Instead of serving juice, make sure that your kids drink plenty of water — it’s free and totally healthy. But also try to make sure that they drink a glass of milk each day so they can get the calcium they need for healthy bones.
Don’t Make Them Clean Their Plates
You probably remember the guilt trip your parents used: “Eat all your food. There are starving children out there.” Unfortunately, this teaches your child early on that they should eat even if they are full. This lesson can stay with them into their adult years; they may feel they have to eat even when they don’t want to, leading to overeating and even obesity.
Don’t Prepare Different Meals for Them
Many parents make it hard on themselves by preparing two different meals each night — one for the adults and one for the kids. But if you make them the same thing as you, you are preparing them to eat healthier “adult” foods like fresh veggies. So leave the chicken nuggets and frozen pizzas alone.
We all want the best for our children. And part of that comes with teaching them to eat well. By following these tips, you can put them on the path to being healthy eaters as they mature into their teen and adult years.