Kids: 3 Ways to Foster Healthy Habits

Kids: 3 Ways to Foster Healthy Habits

This article may well trigger some of you!

 

Why?

 

Because it’s full of truths you may not want to hear!

 

[as always, this article is written with love and I hope it helps you]

 

TRUTH #1 Children do what you do – not what you say!

Look at your habits.  Are they healthy?

 

You are your child’s role model, the person they want to imitate. They look up to you, they copy you and they are first to notice when you don’t practice what you preach!

 

Write yourself a food diary, note your alcohol intake, how often are you talking negative about yourself, how many times a week are you active?

 

Then take a look at your relationship with food. The way you talk about food, prepare food, shop for food, cook and eat food all influence your child’s view of healthy eating.

 

Children watch you so they can learn what they need to know. This goes for learning manners to learning about attitudes towards fitness and diet.

 

You have to lead by example!

 

Start with yourself.  What can you improve? If you need help with this then click HERE.

 

Truth #2 Eating together improves a child’s nutrient intake!

There are so many studies that have looked at the positive impact of eating together as a family. The positives include better problem solving, improved school results to an increase in nutrient levels.

 

I appreciate that it can be very difficult to eat together in today’s busy, fast paced life where both parents are working.

 

However, studies have shown that even eating together 3 times a week gave huge benefits.

 

Studies have also shown that a child is more likely to eat foods such as vegetables when a family eats together.

 

Could you set a goal each week to eat together at least three times a week? Look at your schedule, how could you make this happen?

Truth #3 You are responsible for the food you buy not your kids!

 

It is your job to provide a range of healthy food, it is your child’s job to decide if they want to eat it!

 

As you know, I see a lot of children (especially young children) and I see a lot of food diaries! I also see a lot of fussy kids!

 

I’ve seen a child who would only eat one particular brand of sausages and nothing else!

 

So, my question here is who is in charge of the decisions around the food you buy? The decision should be yours and not your child’s.

 

What foods are you buying for your kids? Would you eat that food? Are you buying one type of bread for you and another for your kids? You have complete control over what goes in the shopping trolley and what ends up in your house! How much of the trolley is good, nutritious food?

 

Have you got stuck in a food rut? Write a family food diary and review what everyone is eating.

 

Is there too much sugar?

 

Something else to understand is that you cannot make a child eat anything! Without going into the depths of fussy eating (this blog is NOT about fussy eating) it is important to understand the following:

 

It is your job to provide a selection of healthy food and it is your child’s decision as to whether they eat it. There should be no pressure on them to eat certain foods and you should never reward a child for eating.

 

To find out more about this have a look HERE

 

10 Easy Ways to Improve your child’s health!

And for further help you can check out my top 10 ways to protect your child’s health HERE.

 

 

References:
https://www.human.cornell.edu/sites/default/files/PAM/Parenting/Family-Mealtimes-2.pdf
https://www.ellynsatterinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/handout-dor-tasks-cap-2016.pdf
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/12/171214092322.htm
https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamanetworkopen/fullarticle/2715616
https://www.opinium.co.uk/brits-struggle-to-find-time-for-family-meals/

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