It’s normal for parents to want the best for their children and to see them grow up to be happy and healthy adults. But it’s only too easy for us to pass on our own bad habits to our kids so here are some children’s health tips to ensure your offspring thrive. Who knows, they may even inspire you to join in – I know my daughter is certainly great at nagging me!
Tips for healthy kids
Take control of their diet now
It’s so easy to fall into bad habits when it comes to your kids’ diet. They want to eat sugary snacks after school, and it’s easy to give in to crisps and chocolate.
We are all familiar with ‘pester power’ but thankfully lots of supermarkets have now moved sweets and chocolate away from the checkouts so that it’s less of a high-risk activity if you have to drag them into the shop for a pint of milk on the way home.
You might be surprised to know that government reports from 2018 found that 20% of Year 6 children in the UK were already overweight so it’s more important than ever to try and limit their intake of high fat and sugary foods while they are young.
Try to find healthier snacks for your kids. Encourage them to eat carrot sticks with hummus and fruit with yoghurt, rather than heading for the crisps.
Also, you need to make healthy dinners that you can eat as a family. If you are all eating the same meal, your children hopefully won’t moan as much about the lack of chicken nuggets and chips!
Let them cook with you
A lot of the reason why people fall into unhealthy territory with foods is that they don’t actually know how to cook healthy dishes. It leads to people just sticking in an unhealthy ready meal into the oven!
Therefore, you need to teach your kids to cook as early as possible. That way, they will be able to cook and make healthy dishes when they are older. Involving your kids in the cooking and preparation will mean they are more likely to eat fruit and vegetables as they grow.
Make them brush their teeth daily
It’s an unfortunate fact that a lot of people in the UK have bad dental health. They end up having teeth removed sooner rather than later. A lot of the reason is down to us not brushing our teeth enough. Research shows that 40% of us don’t even brush our teeth once a day!
By not brushing, plaque builds up, and people end up needing fillings, veneers and even dental implants to cover the imperfections. Therefore, you need to encourage your kids to brush their teeth every day. Also, make sure they attend their dental appointments every year. You should also be limiting their fizzy drink intake as this will cause long-term damage to your teeth.
Encourage them to exercise daily
You might not realise that only one in three kids is actually getting enough physical exercise every day. Instead of getting outside and being active, a lot of kids prefer to sit inside on their tablets, computers, and phones. But by doing this, they are more at risk of obesity and heart problems when they are older. Therefore, sign them up for an energetic class in the evening such as ballet, gymnastics or martial arts. By doing this, it will ensure they are getting regular exercise in their life.
Remember that parents are one of the biggest influences in their children’s lives. So you need to lead by example and follow the tips for healthy kids above so that your children are inspired to follow suit. It’s something I have to remind myself of every day!