How to Encourage Your Kids to Eat Healthier

Your beautiful children need healthy fuel in order to keep them going. You know that nobody has more influence over their eating habits than you do, in the home. But it’s so difficult to get kids to choose to eat healthily. How can you encourage your kids to eat more healthily?

Give Them Options

It’s hard to remember being a kid, and how everything tastes new and extra strong to your taste buds! Give kids options of things they enjoy, and can try in new ways. For example, a child might not enjoy broccoli raw, but might like it oven roasted! Kids who reject carrots that are stewed might enjoy them if they are offered raw, or in soups. Ask them what they don’t like about a veggie, to see if it’s too mushy, too tart, or too bitter. Keep trying new things!

Limit Sugar Intake

Sugar is ubiquitous in daily diets, and the offerings for children are numerous. Sugary drinks are a huge source of added sugar in a child’s diet. Likewise, foods like white breads, flavored milks, and even yogurt all have added sugar. This added sugar just doesn’t serve your kids well. Get accustomed to reading labels in the store, and comparing amounts of added sugars and salts. Remember, banning sugar entirely isn’t necessary. Show your children that treats and sweets are good as sometimes foods, but not every day.

Not All Or Nothing

It’s important, while you work on adding in healthy foods, that you not have an “all or nothing” attitude. Above all, it’s important to teach your children to have a healthy relationship with food, which is difficult for many adults who were taught differently. For example, you don’t need to serve whole wheat noodles and surprise kids with their new taste and texture all at once. Try half whole wheat and half “standard” spaghetti noodles. The texture and flavor will be a gentler transition. Likewise, try substituting half brown jasmine rice with white jasmine rice when cooking. It will taste a little chewier, but will be more readily accepted.

Your willingness to teach your family how to enjoy whole grains, fruits and vegetables is important for their future health needs. It can be important to find ways to incorporate them permanently into your diet. Don’t outlaw all sugar, but make it a treat. Soon, your bodies will be healthier and happier!

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