Children need adequate nutrition to fuel their growing and active bodies. It can be difficult to get kids to eat what you want them to, developing healthy eating habits now will set the foundation for the rest of their lives. Here are a few ways to teach kids healthy eating habits.
Set An Example
Kids learn by observing others. Your child is more likely to embrace a wide variety of foods if they see you eating them first. Be vocal in your enjoyment of healthy foods like fruits and vegetables. if your child inquires about what you’re eating, explain to them the benefits of healthy foods. Eat when you’re hungry and try to avoid overeating around your children. This will help teach them healthy eating habits.
Grocery Shop Together
Take your kids to the grocery store as often as you can. Let them have a say in what foods you buy. Allow them to pick out some fun foods they’re excited about, but also encourage them to select fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean meats. Talk about the different meals you’ll be able to make with these foods. They’ll feel more involved in the process and be excited about eating these foods later on.
Give Them Choices
It takes a while to develop your tastes. Picky eaters are common in adolescents, but kids are more likely to consume a variety of foods when they have choices. Give them a voice in meal preparations, like allowing them to choose the vegetable you’ll be preparing. Let them pick out their own snacks and breakfast when applicable. Your child will go through phases of what they like or don’t like, but this will help them expand their palate and develop a healthy relationship with food.
Don’t Stress Too Much About Their Eating
Children are remarkably intuitive eaters. If they say they’re hungry or full, they probably are. Don’t stress about how much your child is eating unless they fall into unhealthy weight ranges. It’s perfectly normal for them to polish off two plates of food for dinner one day and eat nothing but an apple the next. Their body will help them balance out what they feel they need. By allowing them to rely on their hunger cues, you will help them build a healthy relationship with food and hunger.
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