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PUTTING YOUR KIDS ON A PATH TO GOOD NUTRITION

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  • Category Advice Column, Bonitas, Child, Health, Parenting, Pregnancy & Baby, Toddler, Tween & Teen, Tween & Teen Advice

For many parents, nothing is as stressful as getting your kids to eat all the food on their plate, especially when it comes to veggies. Eating a variety of healthy foods is essential for your children’s wellbeing. Here are some tips on how to get your kids to eat better. 

Introduce new foods

For infants, offer new foods every few days- this way you will be able to monitor their initial reaction or check whether they experience any health complications such as allergies. This means that when your child is a year old they will have been exposed to a varied diet of fruit, vegetables, grains and proteins. 

Toddlers will start to eat on their own, so it is important for you to have a set meal time to monitor and introduce new foods at the same time.

Control consumption of sugar and salt

Feeding babies, toddlers and young children food that contains high levels of sugar, salt and fat may lead to serious health and weight issues later in life. Limit your child’s sugar intake to avoid them developing health complications – such as heart disease and diabetes – later in life.

Eat more fruit and vegetables

Vitamins, minerals and fibre are just some of the benefits that fruit offers Consuming a moderate amount of fresh produce also helps reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as stroke, diabetes and different types of cancer.

Encourage your kids to play with their food

Yes, food play can aid your child’s perception of the health benefits of produce. Fruits like bananas, peaches or apples (that can easily be cut) can be used to decorate a bowl of oats, muesli or yoghurt.

Be your child’s role model

You need to set a good example for your kids when it comes to diet and nutrition. Make a point of eating healthy around your children or, better still, eat healthy meals and snacks together, to encourage them to do the same.

Cook together

Children love shopping with their parents, it’s an ideal time to help select items for their lunch box and deciding on dinner menus.  Use this shopping time to teach them about nutrition and why you make the food choices you do.  Allow them to prepare easy dishes or simply get involved by helping plate up or adorn food with condiments, fruits and veggies to make them feel like a chef.

Preparing a meal will help get kids excited about food especially when they sit down at a family dinner table and eat the meals they helped create.  

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