Parenting can come with a lot of challenges. Among those problems is keeping your child’s diet in check.
Making sure your child has a good diet on their hands can help prevent numerous issues. One of those issues is obesity, which can cause future weight problems. According to the CDC, the number of children with obesity has significantly grown over the last 20 years. Children and teens who are obese are subject to bullying and mocking, but also face potential health risks. These health risks include diabetes, asthma, and bone and joint problems.
Your child may also experience dental problems. If you constantly give your child sugars and sweets, there’s a high chance they will develop cavities. Cavities are known to develop when a child intakes a lot of candy, desserts, or sugary-drinks. In fact, over 40% of children have dental cavities by the time they reach kindergarten.
Along with the physical risks, parents also need to be aware of depression and other mental health issues. Children and teens who are healthy and are in good shape are less likely to struggle with isolation and low self-esteem. Helping your child create a maintain a healthy diet can help prevent these problems.
In order to set your child on the right path, there are a few things you can do. Parents.com says there are many ways for parents to help their children eat better. These include creating a schedule for mealtime, encouraging your kids to help you cook, and being a food role model. If your children see you eating healthy, they will want to eat healthy too. If you have your child help you cook dinner, they will see what goes into the food and what is needed for a proper diet.
Now, setting your child on the right path doesn’t mean that you need to fully cut off any sugars and sweets. Like many people, kids often enjoy sweet treats! In fact, 90% of U.S. households regularly indulge in a delicious, frozen treat. If your child enjoys eating desserts, don’t cut them off cold turkey. It’s okay for them to indulge every once in a while. Just make sure that they enjoy their treats in moderation.
The same goes for other foods, too. Take tacos, for example. While a healthy diet should consist of eating well, it doesn’t mean your child has to give up these delicious Tuesday treats. Americans consume more than 4 billion tacos a year, after all!
Perhaps most importantly, you should teach your children that it’s important to get their fruits and vegetables in. If they’re struggling to eat these things, it’s okay to turn to dip. Dipping vegetables in ranch dip can help your child find the food more appealing. Now, just know that you don’t have to feed them dips forever. It’s just a good way to kickstart their healthy-eating lifestyle. Super Nanny confirms that you should give your child five servings of vegetables a day, so you need to do whatever it takes to get your child to eat them.
Healthy eating and a well-balanced diet are just small steps in a larger plan to prevent obesity, mental health issues, and self-esteem problems. Keep your child in a good mindset and remind them that everything is good but in moderation.