As parents, it’s our job to pass on healthy habits to our kids. After all, if they don’t learn it from us, then who are they going to learn it from? Most obese adults developed unhealthy eating habits as early as 3 years old. For this reason, it’s imperative that parents set a good example as early on as possible.
By paving the way for healthy eating habits today, you’ll help them avoid all sorts of issues from obesity to heart disease in their older age. Here are some of the best eating habits that you should pass on to your children.
Encourage Different Flavors
Kids who have picky eating habits often put up a battle at dinner time. One of the biggest mistakes parents can make is to assume that this pickiness is here to stay. While you shouldn’t necessarily force food down your children’s throats, encourage a diverse selection of food and flavors. Don’t take no for an answer, and continue to introduce adventurous meals to your kids.
The more they’re exposed to different flavors at a young age, the more open-minded they’ll be as they become adults. Remember to encourage your children to try new things. The more that they feel rewarded and encouraged for giving new flavors and foods a try, the more they’ll feel inspired to continue to do so.
Drink Water With Meals
Have you ever eaten at a restaurant with a friend who orders a soda pop with their meal? This is one of the worst habits that you can pass on to your kids. Encourage your children to drink plain old water with their meals instead of sugary drinks.
Water is calorie-free, good for us, and can make us feel fuller longer. Drinking a sugary drink with your meal doesn’t just ruin the integrity of the food, but it also pounds on the calories. Teach your children to learn to love water, and they’ll thank you for it for years to come.
Listen to Your Body
Even though many people eat according to the clock, you’re better off eating according to your body. Not everyone is ready to have a full lunch at 12:00 PM, and not everyone is ready to have dinner at 6:00 PM. Remember, hunger comes at different times from different people. It doesn’t necessarily matter when you eat, as long as you’re getting the correct amount of calories.
Obviously, you’re not going to encourage your child to have dinner at 9:00 PM, however, the idea is not to force them to eat if they’re not necessarily hungry yet. Our bodies have a way of telling us when it’s time to eat better than the clock does.