I recently started eating much healthier and as I started to see all the benefits, I decided that it can’t just be for myself. My whole family and household must enjoy the same benefits.
I have been amazed to see in reality how children mirror what you teach them. The more I introdcued healthy living methods and practises, the more they have been embracing the changes. The main thing is to keep it fun, explain enough as appropriate for their age so they can understand that it is good for them. Everyone even children inherently want to do what is good for them.
When I introduced brown rice, I was skeptical but guess what? the kids love it now and started encouraging their cousins to eat it too.
Healthy Living Tips
1. Engage them
- Can your kids count? Then they can understand and count five servings of fruit and veggies a day.
- Can your kids count? Then they can count how many cups of water they should have per day.
2. Replace with interesting options
- Instead of soda offer fresh fruit juice. Use the fruits that your kids already like. Try a grapes, apple and pineapple combo it is just as yummy as the packaged juices.
- For snacks cut up some apple (remember to squirt with lemon so it doesn’t get discoloured) and keep it handy in a cute bowl the presentation also helps.
3. Introduce New Things gradually
- Start replacing things slowly, you can start with replacing all refined products with healthier alternatives like brown bread, pasta, rice.
- Instead of frying plantain, grill it and you end up with home made boli.
4. Explain things to them
- Explain to children the benefits of eating healthy food, such as it makes them stronger and healthier.
- Carry your staff and care givers along – There is no point doing all this hardwork and your nannies keep offering your children indomie or white rice every day.
5. Keep it fun
- I got them to watch a Steve Harvey Show with some women aged over 70 who looked like 50 or younger. Their secret was eating lots of Veggies and fruits! This resonated with them and they saw that it’s not just “Mummy” saying it…it is real!
- Encourage them when they consume the right things.
6. Teach Self Management
- I have taught them to check the colour of their urine, so if its not close to clear that means they are not drinking enough water, so they are able to self regulate and then they drink more water.
- They have learned portion control because in reality you can’t say no to everything – So for example at birthday parties they reduce the icing on the cake (my older one has started saying she doesn’t like icing at all 🙂
What other tips have worked for you? Teaching then healthy habits early means making good food choices comes easier.