Make your home nutritionally perfect to ensure that your kid eats healthy. Make smart food choices and follow these tips to help you kid build up a positive relationship with healthy food.
Avoid food constraints
Restricting or limiting any type of foods can have bad effect on growth and development of your child. Restricted food habits in childhood can raise the risk of developing eating disorders like bulimia, binging, and anorexia in later life.
Keep nutrition handy
Store healthy food in your kitchen. Keep a fruit on table cut into pieces and nicely displayed on a plate. Keep a bowl of nuts ready. Kids tend to eat what is readily available for them. Make food tempting by cutting carrots and tomatoes into attractive shapes of dolls, cars, trees and toys.
Link food to your child’s favorite things
Avoid calling Foods “Good” or “Bad”. Instead, establish link between food and child’s favourite activities. For e.g. tell your child that milk is good for strong bones and helps him improve his sports performance. Fruits give them the nutrition necessary for shiny long hair.
Admire right choices
Praise your child when he chooses something healthy and tell him how smart he is. Give them that proud smile for the right choice.
Redirect the choice
Ignore child’s demand for unhealthy food in a healthy way. Do not pester and nag them for those unhealthy choices. Even better, redirect the choice! Serve them homemade potato finger sticks fried in less oil in place of French fries or potato chips. Give sugar candy once in a while, but offer almonds dipped in honey instead most of the times.
Do not use food as a prize
Do not use chocolates and ice-creams as rewards. They can lead to obesity in later life. As an alternative, gift your child a trip to zoo or a book of picture, which could be fun as well as help child improve memory.
Family dinner – must! It is important for all the family members to sit together at dining table and eat together. Children follow their elder and cultivate good eating habits. If eating together is not a tradition at your place, it should be. Start immediately!
Serve appropriately healthy portions of every food item on the dinner plate. This will help your kid to recognize and learn about correct portion sizes like a piece of pickle, bowl of salad, a katori of daal, 2 halves of chapatti etc.
Consult a child specialist
Consult your kid’s paediatrician before making any significant changes to his diet and type of food. Do not stamp your kid as thin, fat, heavy, overweight and put him on any diet by yourself.