Do Your Kids Have A Healthy Diet?
Children have really fast metabolisms, which mean they burn calories and fat really quickly. They also tend to expend a lot more energy and a usually more active than adults. So why is child obesity such a major problem and their diets are under the microscope like never before.
There are a few theories as to why child obesity has become so common in today’s society. Genetics can play a part, children with obese parents have a greater likelihood of suffering from obesity problems later in life.
Another factor may be that the average children’s diet is not as wholesome and healthy as it may have been in the past. Well known fast food establishments specifically target children by offering them free toys with their meals. These toys a normally part of a set (promoting a movie) which is only out for a limited time, meaning the family would have to make multiple visits in order for the child.to complete the collection. The children of today are the first generation to be born into the fast food revolution, and need educating about the importance of a healthy diet.
Another factor may be the amount of physical activity that today’s children enjoy compared with the children of yesterday. I spent the majority of my childhood kicking a ball around or riding my bike. Today’s children are more likely to be found on their laptops enjoying some social networking or on a console playing the latest big release. The rise in childhood obesity is probably down to a combination of these factors and their diet is more important than ever.
You need to be aware of your child’s weight and if it falls between healthy levels, you should also have a good idea of how much you should be feeding them. The attitude of piling their plate up and thinking they are a growing lad can be dangerous as they may be getting too many calories. Your first step if you have any concerns should be to get your child checked out by a pediatrician.
As a parent, you have to lead by example when it comes to healthy eating habits. If you have a poor diet, it is unlikely that your child’s is any better. If your child constantly sees you over-eating and never eating fruit or vegetables, then that will become their idea of normal eating. You will constantly be shaping your child’s mind, even when you are not aware. Don’t just change your child’s diet, make it a family affair and get everyone involved. If your child sees you enjoying a healthy meal or regularly snacking on fruit, then they are far more likely to follow suit.
Don’t keep junk food in the house, giving your child unlimited access to a biscuit tin full of chocolate treats is a recipe for disaster. Try adding vegetables to each meal and offering fruit as a healthy snack.
Get your child involved in preparing healthy meals, this will make meal times more fun and exciting. Serve food from the kitchen and avoid putting large serving bowls on the table, portion control is key to a healthy diet.
Try switching some of your child’s meals and treats for healthier no added sugar options. Everything from breakfast cereal to soda offer a healthier option. You can’t stop your child eating unhealthy meals away from home, but if you educate them from an early age and provide them with a healthy diet, then you can sleep easy.
As well as providing a sensible diet, encourage your child to get regular exercise. Plan fun family activities such as trips to the beach, long walks, bike rides or a kick around with or ball? Get the whole family involved and do things on a regular basis.
Don’t just talk about a healthy lifestyle, lead by example and give your child the very best start in life.
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