How to Teach Your Children to Eat Healthy

It’s so important to feed our children healthy foods and teach them to make healthy food choices early in life. Here are a few ideas to help our children eat healthier.
Go food shopping with your children. Allow the children to select the fruits and vegetables. Give them a bag and let them choose the broccoli, string beans, or grapes. Use the dinner table to discuss with the rest of the family how the selected fruits or vegetables were prepared, how they taste, and what the specific nutrients they provide for our bodies.
Visit a farmers market or local farm. Give each child their own weekly snack bag or basket and allow them to pick the fruits or vegetables they want. Give them a section in the refrigerator for their own healthy weekly snacks. Ask them to select plenty of nature’s sweet treats like raisins, grapes, cherries, peaches, oranges, and apples.
Cook with your children. Start with having them wash the fruits and vegetables. Peeling potatoes or carrots with a safe peeler. My children love mixing the salad or making homemade salad dressing. Create fruit shakes or smoothies for dessert. They will love putting the ice, milk, and fruits in the blender and hitting the blend button. While cooking you can hear about their day and emphasize the importance of eating healthy. Have fun in the kitchen preparing healthy dishes and creating lasting memories.
Grow a garden with your children. Start with a window garden of herbs, tomatoes or peppers. They will love planting and playing in the dirt. Watering an outside garden will be tons of fun, children love playing with water. As the vegetables start to grow, play games like “Who Can Spot a Tomato First.” When it is time for picking the vegetables, let the children help. They will be so excited to see the finished product, pick it, and taste it.
Emphasize the importance of drinking water. Strive for eight glasses per day. Allow only water between meals rather than sugary drinks. Explain why water is vital for the body (cleansing, flushing, etc.) and what happens when you become dehydrated.
Lastly, encourage and model good eating habits. Let your children see you drinking lots of water and eating all of your vegetables. Praise them for their vegetable selections in the store and for helping prepare dinner. Have fun eating healthy, preparing healthy dishes, shopping for vegetables, growing your garden, and spending time with your children. Explain that we have one body that we need to feed healthy stuff, love, and take care of!

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