The best guide to encourage healthy eating for kids and parents! There are many reasons people give us for not beginning on the path to healthy eating. Everyone wants to eat healthy. Everyone wants their kids to love eating healthy food. But sometimes, we just need the encouragement and motivation to make it happen,and make it happen consistently. It’s easy to find an infinite number of roadblocks and excuses standing in our way. The energy and the determination to make lasting change takes work. It is our mission to motivate, inspire, energize, and encourage you at Super Healthy Kids, but we also want to give you the tools to do this on your own, with your own families. To be encouraged to eat healthier food, you should first know what we healthy eating consists of. Then, we can start with the small, first steps that will be easy to implement and have the least amount of resistance. Small and simple steps will not only be encouraging, but lead to lasting change as you see results and master new habits.
One of the reasons people share for not starting on a health journey is they simply do not have the time to “figure it all out”. It becomes too overwhelming and those ideas of starting healthy habits eventually become a thing of the past. We are here to tell you, it doesn’t have to be complicated! We not only want you to succeed, but we’re confident you can. So in that effort, here are some guidelines to help keep you on that road to a healthier family lifestyle. Even though we can figure out the meals, give you recipes, help with shopping lists and provide other tools (like our app, Prepear) to make it easy to plan head, you still need to do some personal review. Review your calendar and obligations for the week, and select which meals are going to fit in best with your schedule. If you need a crockpot day, a freezer meal, and a no cook salad, put those meals in your calendar to make them happen like you would an appointment.
- Cutting down on sodium (salt)
- Teach your child to do self-checks when old enough
- Difficulties getting around (such as trouble walking or getting in or out of bed)
- ¼ cup cooked corn
- The presence of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder
- You need an alarm to wake up
- Eat more fruit and vegetables
- Celebrate individual accomplishments, and embrace (or at least accept) the differences
It can be very encouraging to see and anticipate a meal you are looking forward to on your calendar. Give each family member a specific responsibility. It can be as simple as checking off a shopping list while you grab the ingredients in the supermarket or even reading you the recipe while you prep and cook. Remember, even at a young age of 2 & 3, children love to help out, so don’t leave anyone out! Don’t forget your spouse and any other family members who reside with you, this is a family effort and everyone needs to be involved to make it a success. It is most beneficial to begin gradually by changing one meal a day, or even as simple as one meal a week (think Meatless Mondays for example). Stick with the familiar! Your family likely has tastes and preferences unique to you. Begin with your favorite fruits and vegetables and build meals around those. Expand your tastes gradually swapping out one food or dish at a time. If the not-so-good-for-you foods are not in your home, it makes healthy living much easier.
Grab the family, some garbage bags, and get the refrigerator and pantry cleared out for a lot of healthy food choices. Although we don’t deny ourselves treats at parties, keeping them around sends the wrong message to our kids that junk food can be an every day food! And really, why spend your money on junk food if you don’t want the family to eat it. Keep the good fat! Yes, of course, we need our healthy fats for many health reasons but it is also necessary to give our belly’s the feeling of satiety! This actually contributes to diet adherence. So when our recipes call for olive oil, avocado, and nuts, please try not to omit them because we would not include them in the mix if it were not necessary. Yes, most people who are not used to eating healthy foods, may feel deprived or just plain hungry. Eating more fiber rich foods first, will help with this.
Sometimes it is a mind game, too. So get your belly and mind distracted by enjoying the family dinner table conversation. You will truly thank us for that one, knowing you are not only healthier physically, but your family connection will be too! Pat yourself on the back! Just by being in the Super Healthy Kids community says a lot about you and your family! The benefits will persist for many years to come! How much should kids be eating? When many parents come to us trying to encourage their kids to eat healthier, they also want to know how much their kids should be eating. It’s very easy to overeat without realizing it when you are eating processed, high sugar, high salt, junk foods. However, the more whole, clean, natural food a child can be served, the stronger her sense of hunger and fullness can be felt. So, the first answer to this question in regards to encouraging healthy eating, is to encourage eating whole foods , and only then can a child regulate the amount they should eat.