Healthy eating habits can be developed in children when parents themselves lead by example. If your child does not like healthy foods, do not lose heart. With efficient planning of meals and snacks and patience, you can inculcate in your child healthy eating habits. The eating habits picked up earlier in the years will continue with your children through their life time and will help them in regulating their weight and keep fit.
One of the most important aspects of healthy eating is learning to control portion size and cutting down on consumption of unhealthy fats. Also, do not try to put your overweight kid on prohibitive diet. Any prohibitive diet unless the doctor has prescribed so can motivate children to binge and can inculcate in them inferiority complex.
Healthy Diet Tips For kids
Involve Children In Food Shopping
Always make sure you take your children along when going for food shopping. This kind of involvement will make them active in buying (and later on eating ) healthy foods.Ask them to figure out which fruits they would like to eat as snacks which vegetables they will like in their soup, etc. Also ask them to pick up a few healthy roasted snacks which you as a family will enjoy on weekends. Tell them the benefits of these healthy foods while buying them.
Designate A Day For Their Favorite Foods
This trick worked very well with my daughter. I have earmarked Sunday for enjoying two types of junk foods. I made this rule very early when she was two and half years old and had started articulating her food preferences. Every time she would ask me for her favorite potato chips or lollipop, I would tell her that she would get her quota of junk food on Sunday.
Not that she never ate any unhealthy food on weekdays but by and large it regulated her eating habits to a large extent. Even now she looks forward to Sundays when she can have two types of favorite junk foods. Of course, I control portion size when she digs into ice-cream or asks for potato chips. I buy her small sizes of packets and cups and not the big ones and plan to buy medium sized packets when she grows up.
Do Not Force Them To Eat Everything From Plate
Never force your kids to finish off everything from the plate. Allow them to enjoy the portions they are happy with. When we force feed kids, they tend to abhor eating and avoid eating with us.On the other hand, force feeding does not give kids time and opportunity to listen to their mind, when it signals that tummy is full. This kind of negligence leads to overeating later in life.
D0 Not Offer Food As Reward
When parents begin to treat sweets and desserts as a reward for kids, the kids tend to place higher value on sweets and desserts and begin to avoid healthy foods like fruits and vegetables. Besides, kids also tend to use food as a means to cope with stress and anxiety which leads to weight gain later in life.
Do Not Encourage Them To Drink Juices And Soda
Juices and soda are not healthy and come in the way of healthy nutrition. Packed juices available in the market contain lots of sugar and are low on nutrition scale. Instead, offer them fresh fruit juice once in a while but do not make it a part of regular diet.Rather than juices, encourage children to eat whole fruit which contains both – vitamins and fiber. Encourage children to drink lots of water and two servings of milk every day.