Becoming a parent can be the most amazing thing in the world and the most challenging. Trying to ensure yout kids grow up to be healthy and happy can feel like a big responsibility. One of the most important ways to keep kids healthy is to ensure they are eating a healthy diet. But getting kids to eat healthily is not always an easy task.
Everyone is aware eating a healthy diet and being physically active helps kids to thrive. But knowing this and being able to put this advice into practice are two very different things. Being a parent is not easy, and often moms and dads find themselves in a daily battle with their kids over what they eat. When your kids want to feast on cookie dough and chips, getting them to eat their greens can be a big challenge.
Eating a healthy diet in childhood is especially crucial. Kids need a balanced diet with plenty of essential nutrients to help them grow and develop healthily. If you are looking for some inspiration to help you get your kids to eat healthily, the following tips should help:
Healthy habits can start early, so when you begin weaning your baby onto solid food, it can be helpful to carry out plenty of research and get advice from your pediatrician. Introducing your little one to healthy foods from the start of weaning and keeping those sweet flavors to a minimum should help them get used to eating these healthy choices from the start.
It can take babies and toddlers a long time to get used to new flavors. So, if your little one doesn’t like the taste of something to start with, it may take several tries before they accept the food and start eating it.
Don’t Use Food as a Reward
You probably remember being given food as a reward when you were a child. Getting candy for being well-behaved or going out for ice cream after getting good grades are food rewards many people received as kids. However, using food as a reward can sometimes lead to issues and impact the relationship with food. Linking food to rewards may be the reason for some people turning to food for comfort when they have had a bad day or overindulge when celebrating.
Nurturing a healthy relationship with food for your child may involve reassessing the use of food as a reward and could help them to develop a healthier relationship with food later in life.
Get Kids Involved in the Kitchen
Having a child that is a picky eater can make every mealtime stressful. You may find that they will only eat certain foods, or they may refuse to eat anything healthy at all. If your child is usually reluctant to try new foods or flavors, there are a few ways you can help. Getting your kids involved in the kitchen and letting them help you with the cooking can be really beneficial. Not only will your kids learn essential cooking skills that they will use throughout life, but they are also far more likely to eat the food that they cook.
Getting your kids to help with age-appropriate tasks under supervision in the kitchen will help them develop a much better understanding of how food is prepared. Focusing on preparing healthy meals, such as boiling chicken for shredding and using it to make tasty wraps with vegetables, is sure to get them interested in cooking and, most importantly, eating.
Help Kids Understand Food
As well as developing an understanding of how food is prepared, it is also helpful for kids to understand where it comes from. Kids love getting stuck into hands-on activities, so encouraging them to help you grow vegetables is something that they will really enjoy. Gardening can be so much fun for kids, and they will love to see the seeds they plant grow into something that the entire family can eat. So why not give your kids the chance to put their green thumb to use and have fun growing their own fruit and veggies?
Be a Healthy Role Model
One of the most effective ways to encourage kids to eat healthily is to be a positive role model. After all, it is hard to tell your kids what they should be eating if you are not following your own advice. Kids often copy the habits and behaviors they see from their parents, so being a healthy role model is essential.