As a parent it can be frustrating to help your child eat healthy foods, especially if you have a child who is a picky eater. Looking around your kitchen is one way to know if you are teaching your child to eat right. If your cupboard is loaded up with cookies, soda, and potato chips, your child is not getting the healthy food they need. Let’s look at some ways to make sure your child is eating right.
No one is going to tell you that you cannot have snack food in the house at all, but it is the amount of snack food you have that is the key. If sugary sweets and potato chips are easy to grab, you most likely will not be teaching your child to eat right because there is no alternative to the junk food. Start incorporating healthy food into your cupboards. Throw out the Twinkies and add some bananas, raisins, and nuts to your cupboard.
The best nutrition advice for your children’s nutritional needs is as follows:
•Eat a variety of foods
•Balance the food he eats with physical activity
•Choose a diet with plenty of grain products, vegetables and fruits
•Choose a diet low in fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol
•Choose a diet moderate in sugars and salt
•Choose a diet that provides enough calcium and iron to meet his growing body’s requirements
•Cut out fast food, caffeine and juice
For most children’s nutrition it is recommended that they eat three meals a day and two nutritious snacks, limiting high sugar and high fat foods. Starting to teach your child to have healthier eating habits can prevent many medical problems, including; obesity, osteoporosis, and developing diabetes.
Some parents in today’s society believe that forcing their child to clean their plate ensures they are receiving healthier food. What most parents don’t think about is the snacks their child may be eating during the day that contribute to their child being full at dinnertime. Children who do not have healthy eating habits are likely to continue making unhealthy eating choices into adulthood.
If you have a toddler or a child who is a picky eater, you are probably having a hard time getting your child to eat vegetables on a regular basis. Many experts will tell you that you can get kids to eat more vegetables is you start by offering a large variety of vegetables. Teach your child to eat right by eating vegetables yourself. Many parents have found that if you mix vegetables into a food your child already likes, they will eat their vegetables.
Incorporating fruit into your children’s nutrition is often easier than vegetables. Know how many fruits your child should be eating each day to ensure proper nutrition. Looking at the daily food pyramid is a great place to start to know how many servings of fruits and vegetables your child should be eating each day.
Most children do not get enough calcium and iron recommendations for their age. Soda beverages and sugary drinks have taken the place of milk in many children’s diets. Many fast-food restaurants also do not promote healthier food and therefore have lead to obesity in many young children. When you are looking at your children’s nutritional recommendations, keep in mind that vitamins A and C, iron and calcium have clearly defined recommendations for children.
Don’t try to force feed your child if they say they are full, do not make them sit at the dinner table and clean their plate. Chances are they have already consumed snacks that have given them enough calories for their needs.