Starting your children off in life with healthy food choices is very important for their development and also for their attitude to food choices. Children gain most of their knowledge when it comes to food choices form their parents so it is essential that good habits are established and healthy choices or constantly being made. The following are some simple and effective tips to help shape your children’s attitude to healthy food choices and encourage them to learn about, eat and enjoy healthy and nutritious foods.
When it comes to dealing with children it is always a good idea to focus on the foods that are nutrient rich and good for their health rather than talking about what they shouldn’t be eating. Teaching healthy food choices from a young age is very important and can be done by teaching children to recognise things such as brightly coloured fruit and vegetables, fibre rich breads and foods, low fat foods and lean meats such as skinless chicken.
It is also important to show children healthy food choices by setting a good example both when shopping and also when eating out. It is amazing how much children pick up by watching their parents with many children developing bad eating habits from parents or other members of the family.
Healthy food choices can also be taught to kids if they are encouraged to participate in planning meals and also the cooking. The recent popularity of children on reality cooking shows is a great example of how kids can really learn and enjoy being part of the planning and cooking of a meal. Many common recipes that households eat on a regular bases such as pasta dishes, meat and vegetable dishes and even desserts have steps and jobs that children can do to help prepare these meals. While children are helping with the food preparation and cooking they are also learning about healthy food choices.
Including the children in other activities such as the weekly grocery shopping is also another great way to educate children on healthy food choices (it also gives you some extra hands to carry the bags in from the car when you get home). Helping children choose healthy snacks and encouraging them to read labels is great for their education and also broadens their horizons when it comes to trying new foods. Shopping at the local fruit and vegetable shop or farmers market is also great for instilling healthy food choices in your children.