Try these 8 healthy tips:

  1. Eat breakfast. Choose something with fiber and protein to keep you full and focused until lunch. Be a role model and eat breakfast with your family.
  2. Try new foods together. There are so many fruits and vegetables waiting for you to try.
    • Eat the same foods together as a family. Avoid sending the message that there are adult foods and kid foods.
    • Let your children select a new fruit or veggie at the grocery store.
    • Don’t be emotional about food refusal. Try again another day and remember, there is no need to reward trying new foods.
    • Studies show that foods introduced after age four are refused more often.
  3. Plan meals together. Take turns having theme nights and be sure that everyone’s favorites are included once in a while. Avoid being a short-order cook.
  4. Shop on the perimeter of the grocery store. Make a list of the items you need from the inner aisles, which includes mainly processed foods.
    • Avoid shopping when hungry (and if your your children are, pick out a banana in the produce section instead of a cookie.)
    • Stop at a local produce stand to pick out local fruits and veggies that are in season.
  5. Eat out less — this includes ordering take-out food.
    • Set a meal-time routine and determine a designated eating area, preferably not in front of the television.
    • Cook more at home. You can teach your kids to cook or learn how to cook together. 
  6. Each meal should be half fruits and vegetables, ¼ protein, ¼ grain.
    • Let your child determine how much he or she needs to eat.
    • The parents' role is to provide the food, not control the amount consumed.
  7. Read and understand food labels to make wise food choices
    • The worst offenders in the ingredients list? Sugars listed first and hydrogenated fats.
    • Also look for fiber: a child’s age plus five equals the minimum fiber needed per day (example: age 4 + 5 = at least 9 grams a day of fiber)
  8. Enjoy your food, eat slowly and have fun at meal time!

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