It may be a new year but some things will always stand the test of time.Particularly, children being fussy eaters.
While this can often be cute, their fretting and desire to eat only specific foods may affect their healthy eating. This can then hinder their proper growth and development. It may be a new year but some things will always stand the test of time. Particularly, children being fussy eaters. While this can often be cute, their fretting and desire to eat only specific foods may affect their healthy eating. This can then hinder their proper growth and development.
Moreover, with television commercials marketing unhealthy foods to children and the risk of childhood obesity on the rise, it’s imperative that we educate our children about proper nutrition.
That being said, read on for our tips on how you can encourage healthy eating in your children in the year to come.
Healthy eating tips for your kids
While necessary, healthy food can often become quite boring over time- especially to children.
This is why it’s important to add some creativity and color to your meals. There are various ways to make simple, healthy foods more vibrant by making smiley-faces in the meals, creating silly names for the meals or even shaping the vegetables into hearts and stars.
It’s important for children to eat between three to four hours a day, which translates to three meals and two snacks (along with plenty of water).
By scheduling these meals, you will not only instill healthy habits into your child but you’ll also ensure a healthy balanced meal while lessening the risk of a cranky, hungry child.
Lead by example
While it would be much easier if all children did as they were told, some of them also learn by what they see around them.
If you’re hoping for your child to eat healthy, it’s important to create a healthy environment in which they can easily adopt. Your relationship with food will influence your child so you need to ensure that it’s a good one. Instead of falling into any erratic, fad diets, rather routinely fill your plate with good fats and green vegetables whilst always eating breakfast and drinking water.
Invite them to help cook
If your child is more involved in preparing meals, they are more likely to be more interested in eating what they’ve created.
child cooking | Longevity LIVE
Aside from boosted confidence, engaging them in cooking will educate them about healthy eating but it will also allow you to spend more quality time together. You can take them to the store to allow them to see where their food comes from as well as select their own ingredients. You could also buy them their own apron!
Do not reward them with sweet treats
Unfortunately, a lot of us are guilty of rewarding our children with foods and other unhealthy sweet treats.
By rewarding our children with food, we are having them associate certain foods with feelings of achievement and happiness. This can then increase the likelihood of them becoming emotional eaters. It is advisable to find other healthier forms of rewards. This can include praising them or even allowing them an extra hour of play time.
Keep healthy food around
Children consume what’s available thus it’s important to fill the kitchen up with healthy snacks. Keeping dried fruits and nuts around the house and in the car is a good idea.
Grow your own gardening
Another way to get your child more involved is through gardening. Having them participate in growing vegetables is a great educational tool. You’ll be teaching them about nutrition as well as their origin of their foods.
Don’t give up
It’s important to start small and slow and rushing your child into it will likely have the opposite intended effect.
Just remember that persistence is key. The more frequently you allow your children to consume healthier foods, the more they’ll actually come to like it. You might have to compromise a bit but in the end, you’ll find them eating healthier food much willingly.