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VividLife - How do I get my 8 year old to eat healthy?

by sherly sylvia (2021-06-16)

Children have the greatest need for nutrients due to their rapid rate of growth and development. It is vitally important that we give them healthy options to support optimal health and instill good eating habits for the future. Nutritionally complete meals are a must.
It may be difficult at first, but the payoff will last a lifetime. The following are some tips and tricks to help you change your child's perception of healthy foods.
1. Educate about food
Education is one of the best gifts you can give your child. First of all, be aware of what you are feeding your child and what his nutritional needs are. Beware of hidden food additives such as chemicals, dyes, salt, sugar, nitrates, etc.
Teach your child the difference between how healthy foods affect their body versus unhealthy foods. Above all, led by example. The best way for children to learn healthy eating habits is by observing what is going on in their mouth.
2. Do not bribe children
Easier said than done, right? Unfortunately, using food as a bribe can lower the value of healthy food, when promoting unhealthy food is used as a gift for good behavior. Also, it can cause emotional eating in your future. If possible, we want to avoid using food as a bribe.
3. Ensure an active lifestyle
Exercise is an important part of growth and development and helps improve overall well-being. Using the exercises will have your children demanding their next meal, even if it is healthy.
4. Involve them in the kitchen
Children love spending time with their parents and they love helping out in the kitchen. It can be as simple as asking to identify the foods to be cut or asking for their opinion on what vegetable should go in the next kabob shish. When a child feels that their opinions count and they are allowed to make decisions, they will be more willing to eat what is on their plate.
5. Follow the 80/20 rule
Unless they are under your constant supervision, it is not realistic to expect children to eat healthy all the time. The 80/20 rule allows for a strong foundation of healthy eating at home with room for those “cravings” times. This helps avoid isolation and deprivation. It also allows freedom and independence.
6. Be consistent
It is important that, as a parent, you are consistent and persistent in your decision to feed your children healthy foods. It may not be easy at times, but by providing structure and a routine for your child, you will instill these healthy habits in them. Eating healthy foods at home is one of the greatest gifts you can give your children.
7. Be creative
Children love different shapes and colors. Prepare fun and visually interesting food. This does not mean adding synthetic food coloring to your child's diet. Instead, use the wide variety of foods we have at our disposal. You know your child better than anyone, so use your imagination to find fun ways to “dress up” healthy foods.
8. Allow Independence
Children often challenge their parents out of a natural desire for independence. Instead of fighting them in this natural desire, why not attend to it?
This is not to say that a parent should wait to make 3 different meals for each member of the family. It simply means that healthy alternatives and variety could be presented in one meal. For example, through two types of vegetables, your child can choose which one he prefers.
9. Desserts must be nutritionally complete
Eating healthy does not mean that you have to deprive your child of dessert. Instead, make sure your dessert complements the meal and is nutritionally complete. A dessert that is nutritionally complete is one that doesn't just contain carbohydrates. Making sure there is protein and a source of fat, it is optimal. This will always provide your child with nutrients and will also balance his blood sugar levels.
10. Eat plenty
Children are growing at a rapid rate. This means that its requirement for nutrients is extremely high. Don't want to put a child on a diet. Restrictive diets can lead to nutritional deficiencies. Instead, provide your child with healthy foods so he can eat as much as he wants.
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