According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) childhood obesity has more than tripled since the 1970’s, and now one in five school-aged children are obese. One major contributing factor to these surprising statistics is the role of eating habits within school-aged children. Many of them have never been taught kids healthy eating habits which can translate to poor nutritional choices. While there are many other factors that impact a child’s weight, one that can impact them throughout life is the establishment of kids healthy eating habits. Read on to learn our kids healthy eating habits tips.
Let Them Make Choices
As parent’s you are in control of how meals are handled for your children. Therefore, pick what you plan to serve your family and stick to it even if they complain. While it may be tempting to do so, don’t prepare them something else if they decide they do not want what you made. Instead, accept that some meals you prepare will be quickly devoured while others may be barely touched. Bear in mind that your child’s stomach is not as large as yours, so it is not appropriate to expect them to eat as much as you do. While it may look like they are being picky or barely eating it may simply be they are full.
Drink Calories Count
One of the sneaky enemies of kids healthy eating habits is consuming calorically dense beverages. Just because they are in liquid form does not mean that these calories don’t count. Sodas, juices, sports drinks, and even coffee drinks can contain absurd amounts of sugars and calories that can lead to rapid weight gain if left unchecked. While most kids may prefer to drink anything but water, it is often the best choice.
While it is not advisable to do it all the time, occasionally you may want to let your kids choose which vegetables to serve with dinner. This can serve as a crucial barometer of what foods your children truly enjoy. Along the same lines, it is wise to introduce your kids to a wide variety of foods as early as possible. However, don’t get discouraged if your child does not immediately love a food. It can take up to twenty times of exposure to a food before a child will try it and another twenty times before they form an opinion about it.