7 Ways to Instil Healthy Eating Habits in your Children
It’s very well known that eating healthy at an early age makes all the difference. What’s even better known is how difficult it is to get a care-free young child to care about the benefits of healthy eating.
Here’s a guide on how to encourage a diet that keeps the health well and the arguments to a minimum!
1. Slow and Steady wins the healthy eating race:
In a busy, on-the-go and distracted life, eating at a slower pace can do wonders for a better living. Make sure your kids take their time to chew the food properly and spend a dedicated amount of time focused on their meal. Eating slowly leads to better digestion and a more satisfying and nourishing meal. For this, you could also choose high-fiber foods that take more time to chew.
Set aside some proper time and call the family to have a sit-down dinner together.
2. If they make it, they can’t complain about it!
Involve your kids in the process of making or selecting the food. While the meal is being prepared, talk to them about what ingredient comes with what benefits.
This will not only help them get more educated about the kind of nutrition that they are consuming, they would also be more willing to eat what they participated in preparing. Encourage them to make their own food decisions in the process. Once they feel responsible for the meal, they are more likely to make better and healthier decisions.
3. Keep a check on the fluid intake.
Ensure a sufficient amount of water intake for your child. A hydrated body and mind is the first step towards healthy eating. You could do this by setting alarms to remind the entire family to pause and drink a glass of water. To develop a habit, you could also begin by making drinking water into a game. Buying cups and sippers that the child likes would also encourage him to drink more than he or she normally would. This would also decrease the urge to drink aerated drinks which are unhealthy and can be replaced by flavoured water or healthier substitutes.
4. Avoid being the food monster.
Enforcing rules about food or specifically making kids eat food that they dislike would get them to form an image about healthy eating that will go a long way. Instead, bring variety into meals and stock your home with wholesome foods and snacks. Find innovative recipes that can incorporate all the necessary nutrients and let go of that one vegetable that is a nightmare for your child.
5. Have a snacking time-table – Or just stock up on FRU2go!
Constantly munching on junk food is never a path to healthy living. However, planned wholesome snacks for kids can ensure that their energy levels don’t slacken all day and their meals aren’t compromised. Choose snacks such as Fru2Go that are entirely natural, without any preservatives or sugar and most importantly, taste good! Having such convenient snacks at hand at all times would help your child develop only healthy eating habits and grow an affinity to such a diet.
6. The portions of the food define the proportion of healthiness.
Pay attention to portion size and ingredients. Also, make sure you serve the appropriate portion as indicated on the label. Monitoring food proportions for kids can help in different aspects of their lives including developing strong bones, maintaining a healthy weight and keeping your child’s mental health and focus intact. If your child remains distracted while eating, they may end up eating more than what is the ideal diet for them. To develop a healthy eating regime, teach them the value of food proportions and why, ‘how much you eat’ is as important as ‘what you eat.’
7. Lastly, find your own balance.
If you’re constantly worried about what your kids eat and how much they eat, you’re never going to be able to keep track. Step back and just ensure that they are on a wholesome diet at the end of the day. Kids’ appetites, needs and growth fluctuates and depends on a lot of variables. You only have to strive for the right balance. Don’t let food become a topic of power struggle between you and your child!