Children’s growth and development depend very much on the foods they are fed and the benefits of healthy eating for kids is detailed in this article to alert parents to the dangers of neglecting this aspect of the child’s development. Balanced, nutritious meals are a must for every growing child because the benefits transcend into adulthood. Poor diet leads to obesity and a host of medical and psychological problems for the child.
For those of us not aware of it there is a good guide pyramid, which can help us better understand the different food groups. All of our food is divided into grains, vegetables, fruits, dairy products and meats, beans, poultry, fish and nuts. Your child gets a balanced diet when all the food groups are covered. There are some groups where the intake needs to be lesser than the others, such as the oils and meats.
The benefits of healthy eating for kids will not be felt if you blindly follow the food groups. For example an apple in its natural state will do more for your child’s well being and overall good health than an apple pie with sugar would.
For children to develop healthy eating habits the parents will need to lead by example. It is always advisable to start a child out eating right from a very small age because this becomes habit forming. You should never put a child on a restrictive diet without the approval and supervision of a pediatrician. Overweight children go through quite a lot of trauma as a result of their size and all of this can be avoided if the parents take onus for ensuring that the children eat the right kinds of healthy nutritious foods they need.
Given below are some ideas on how to draw on the benefits of healthy eating for kids:
o You can guide your family’s choices by doing the shopping right; never dictate it will not go down well. Make sure your home has plenty of healthy foods like fruit and vegetables, yoghurts and dips that you can turn into healthy meals and snacks for the family. Don’t stock up on crisps and other junk food no matter how attractive the packaging and how easy it makes the shopping, to simply load up the trolley with a bunch of pre-packaged foods for kids.
o Make mealtimes a family affair with a lot of happy talk and exchange of ideas. This will help children to eat more slowly. Gobbling food will not help a child differentiate between a full and overfull stomach. When there is fun and laughter at the table you will find your children wanting to stay put and take the meal at a slow pace.
o Take your children with you when you go shopping and when you prepare meals as much as possible. Take the time to learn about their preferences and use the opportunities to teach them about the importance of nutrition and the benefits of healthy eating for kids.
o It is no secret that children enjoy snacking between meals and plenty of low fat milk and fruit should be the healthy alternatives. Try to avoid over eating at any cost. Always remember that what you don’t have at home your children cannot eat – so throw out the junk food!
Exercising and being active goes hand in glove with eating right so make use of this article to better understand the benefits of healthy eating for kids.