Posted By: Stella Pike | August 17, 2020
As parents, your greatest task is to give your children the tools to make their best decisions, and hope they do so, knowing you gave them insight with only their best interest at heart. And while some children detest certain foods for a variety of reasons, we all insist they eat it to be healthy and strong. No parent pressures a child to eat green vegetables with malice of forethought.
However, when you are a kid, and your told to eat your greens, and you hate the color green, then it seems like you are being punished. Little do these children realize that when they become adults, the amount of green vegetables consumed directly correlates to internal health. And that is why educating kids in the ways of nutrition is so important. They need reasons for why they should do things. “Just because,” is not an answer. They need to know the truth in why all those different nutrition-minded ingredients go into a ninja professional blender for your morning shake. And we tell them we do it because it is good for us. But let us take it a step farther.
Doing right by your children’s nutrition in the arena of food and healthy choices is not difficult. It takes the will to enact a plan and stay steadfast to its implementation. And getting them onboard can be best accomplished if they have the proper facts, and proper motivation.
For instance, your daughter might want healthy hair that has a shine with no tangles. Teaching nutrition for healthy hair to her will benefit her for the entirety of her life. Or you have an athlete in the family. Giving them the right combination of Nutrition foods for weight gain, or loss, and fuel to build muscle mass is paramount to their success. And for parents with intelligent children, there are foods that supercharge cognitive function, giving them a mental edge.
Maybe they want to know what they are eating and why. Healthy recipes with nutrition facts are readily available on food boxes, and on the internet. In fact, you would be hard pressed to find a recipe that did not share caloric content or specific percentages.
Healthy nutrition plan
To teach kids to choose good foods and stay away from bad ones, here are a few ideas.
You kids love sugary snacks because they have had their attention grabbed by creative marketing that speaks to their desires. And these advertisers know what to say, and more importantly, what not to say. Removing the label of healthy or un-healthy when describing your food selection to a child is a good way not to dissuade them from trying it. If they know it’s good for them, that is one thing, but if you call it a “healthy alternative,” all they hear is its tasteless, void of sugar, and not at all fun to eat.
If you show them nutrition versus telling them, that sets a good example they will follow, as you are the primary example they learn from. But if you try to force something on them, they will always resist. It is just something kids do, even to their detriment. Educate them, don’t pressure them. Knowing what something is, unless it is even weird to you, is the best path to understanding nutrition and acceptance.
The most juvenile biological imperative is the early desire to involve yourself in something, potentially hazardous, just because someone told you not to. And even adults do it. If you tell a child to avoid touching a hot stove, they naturally will anyway out of a notion that touching a hot stove is special, not dangerous, or foolish. The same applies to foods. If you tell your child not to eat something, that same defiant neurosis is going to rear its head. Once again, educate, and keep labels to a bare minimum.
Giving your kids the right knowledge and tools to live a healthy lifestyle is as simple as passively regulating what they put in their bodies. Nutritionists agree that some sugars, certain fats, and carbs are necessary for a child to grow properly and meet their growth percentage at each pediatric check-up. And they all can agree that letting your child dictate their diet is a terrible idea. They are your children. You set the standard for healthiness in your home. Do you have any fun and nutrition health conscious recipes or ideas that a struggling parent can use with their fussy eater?