Optimal health is only achievable through the combination of fitness/ exercise and healthy eating! However, forming a healthy diet rich in vitamins and wholesome foods can be a struggle, especially, if healthy eating isn’t already a habit in your life! Like many other aspects of a child’s personality, healthy dietary habits are formed early in life during your most formative years. Therefore, as a parent, it is vital to get your kids eating right as early as possible to help solidify the habit. How does a healthy diet impact your child’s life you ask?
- Physical Development- A healthy diet can improve your child’s physical function in all aspects, for example a diet rich in vitamins, fats, proteins, veggies, fruits, etc. will help your child reach their fullest height potential and develop strong bones. The repercussions of neglecting healthy foods into your child’s diet includes delayed puberty, a short stature, prone to infections or illness, poor bone health, dehydration and so much more.
- Educational Development- It has been proven that kids who eat a bigger breakfast and eat the right foods throughout the day tend to perform better in schools. Breakfast serves as the foundation for the whole day, and gives kids the energy to carry on. A healthy breakfast has shown to increase problem solving skills, memory, verbal fluency and creativity. Our brains need the calories to not only function with basic tasks, but to retain vital information. Therefore as parents we must ensure our kids are getting all the vital calories throughout the day so they can excel in school.
Getting your kids to eat healthy is a lot easier said than done, but neglecting this can serve consequences in the long run that will hold your kids back in many ways. Outlined below are some tips and tricks to help your kids develop these essential habits!
- Make it routine- Cook mainly healthy dishes for your family. Instead of making it a chore be creative and make yummy dishes that your kids enjoy! As well offer fruits and veggies as snacks for your kids, and put only healthy items in their lunch boxes and save treats for special occasions! If your kids develop a palate for healthy eating than they are more inclined to make it a lifelong habit.
- Lead By Example- Show your kids how a healthy plate should look like, filling it with fruits and veggies and the other half with lean proteins and whole grains. Eat the same meals as they do so they associate healthy eating as a human necessity, not just a rule for young kids.
- Teach portion size/ Moderation- Teach your kids how that it is okay to sneak in a dedicate treat here and there, but it must be in moderation and coupled with healthy foods. Doing this will help them associate bad foods with a treat and healthy foods as normal.
- A proper nutritional diet at a young age is vital for children’s development and growth! Introducing healthy foods to your children will not only help them develop to their fullest abilities, but will help them develop habits that will carry them throughout the rest of their life!
Lunch Box Ideas
Healthy eating for kids doesn’t need to be a chore, as there are hundreds of healthy recipes out there that are easy to make and perfect for your kids lunch box! Always strive to maintain the 5 food groups and pack water and healthy beverages! Here are some popular ideas to get your kids eating healthy all day long Snack: Honey Muesli Bars Celery, Ham and Egg Roll Ups
Carrots and Hummus
Piece of fruit or veg
Trail Mix Main lunch: Veggie Quesadillas Thai Chicken Salad Pea and noodle fritters
Whole Grain sandwich with lean deli meats and cheese