Only sumo wrestlers desire to be obese. The rest of us would never long to weigh more than we should. Thus, parents who wish only the best for their kids, want a normal weight for them.
To help your children achieve and maintain a healthy weight and be trimmer kids, keep in mind the following points:
Starting early means taking care of oneself even before pregnancy occurs. Adults who wish to have children someday must try to keep themselves fit even if they are single and unattached. The same goes for couples since conceiving a child can come as a surprise.
Subsequently, infants can already be trained to eat only when he is hungry and to stop as soon as he is full. Those who take care of the baby need to exercise good judgment whenever the baby cries. Hunger is not the only reason why babies cry and they don’t have to be fed every time they wail.
Good eating habits should also be learned very early in life. This includes eating a variety of nutritious food. Thus, vegetables have to be introduced to a child as early as six months old.
Not relating food with comfort should also be developed at an early age. Parents have to be creative in finding ways to reward their children without using food as a prize. They should also avoid using vegetables and other healthy food as punishment for misbehavior.
Be a Role Model
It is difficult to choose our food wisely and to eat just the right portion when everyone around us do not care about their fitness. So imagine just how hard it is for a child to select nutritious food when he frequently sees his parents wolf down tasty unhealthy food.
Parents should also show their children that food is generally only for mealtimes. This means that there is no mindless eating while working or studying and especially while watching TV.
Nutritious treats may be enjoyed every day while high-calorie snacks may be taken very rarely and not as a reward for good behavior. Being active and spending even a little time daily for exercise are also good habits that parents can model to their children.
Parents can make healthy lifestyle easier for their kids by setting an example. They won’t only keep their children trim and healthy, they themselves will also be in shape and ready to take on their adult roles.
Make It Fun
Succeeding in an endeavour is more likely if a person enjoys what he is doing. The same goes with staying trim.
One way to make kids appreciate the nutritious food at home is by engaging them in buying groceries and preparing meals. Just be sure to make them feel valued and accepted in this parent-child bonding activity.
Another sure way to monitor children’s food intake is by eating with them regularly. However, having meals together is not enough. Breakfast and dinnertimes must be seasoned with pleasant conversation and affection.
Thus, obliging a kid to eat when he asserts that he is not hungry must not be done at mealtime. Just make him sit and join in the lively and loving banter of the whole family at the dining table.
Being active can be done as a family as well. Find a common sport to enjoy at least once a week. The family may also do common outdoor games such as playing tag or catching frisbees. Age doesn’t matter as long as a person can still run and understand the game rules.
A healthy lifestyle is not caught in an instant. It is a product of daily and conscious decisions to choose the right kind and amount of food. It also involves intentionally spending time to exercise.
Since a lifestyle involves a long period of time, setbacks and giving in to laziness and wrong food choices happen. Parents must acknowledge this reality, accept it when they’ve slipped, and choose to make the right decision next time. They should also understand their children’s lapses and encourage their children back in the right direction.
Shame or too much guilt can hinder your family’s journey towards good health. It is easier to persevere when a person is in high spirits than when he is depressed. So it is important to maintain an environment of warmth and approval within your family.
We want our kids to be trim because we want the best for them. The tips listed may require parental sacrifice. However, maintaining a healthy weight is essential for each family member and is thus, a pursuit worth taking on.
- Mintle, L. 2005. Overweight Kids: The Positive, Practical and Inspirational Guide for Parents. USA.
- Microsoft Encarta. 2009.