As children develop, they watch what their parents continue and start new habits – both desirable and undesirable. This means that if parents want their children to be as healthy as possible, it’s important for parents to practice what they preach. Here are five key tips to be an effective role model for health.
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. It fuels our bodies and minds and kick-starts our metabolism. We tell our kids to eat breakfast, but are we eating breakfast? Make it a priority to spend 10 minutes every morning to sit down with your kids and calmly eat breakfast. Not only will you be spending quality time with them, but you’ll also be energizing your own mind and optimizing your own nutrition.
We tell our children to choose healthy snacks, but are we making the best choices ourselves too? Are we going to the coffee shop and grabbing a latte and muffin? We should be setting an example and eating the snacks we want our children to eat too. Having those healthy snacks around will help satisfy hunger and keep everyone energized and fueled.
Some healthy snacks are:
Refraining from TV time is an ongoing battle. We usually tell children to do something else in place of watching the tube. Take a look at what you’re doing at that time too? Can you play with them? Taking a walk, playing catch (or rolling a ball with very young children ), playing a board game, and reading a book are all activities that can help our children grow and stay active. Not to mention they are a great way to spend some quality time as a family!
What we eat, our children will eat. Serving a variety of foods can help to increase our children’s desire to eat those foods. Try these tricks to get the kids more involved:
If children have the opportunity to do all of this with you, instead of you doing it all by yourself, you’ll be setting a good example of the tasks that need to be done, and they’ll learn in the process! Then, when you’re finally sitting down together as a family, everyone can enjoy the meal that was prepared as a team.
We have all heard repeatedly that soda and juice contain many calories and that children’s intake should be reduced. Well, the same goes for parents, and what better way to teach children than by hydrating yourself the healthier way. When your kids see you drinking caffeinated and sugar-filled drinks, you’re setting a poor example of the best choices to make. If plain water is not good enough, try infusing water and let the kids select what to infuse it with, or drink flavored sparkling water!
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