Kid eating

It is frustrating enough to have kids around the house, they can be more frustrating when it comes to feeding, and the picky ones are the most frustrating. But as a mother, you can’t but make sure that they get the best of all things. Verily I say unto you, the only way to your children’s heart is good food. Taking out satisfying their desires, your desire for them is even more important. As mothers, we cannot kick out the fact that we want our children to stay healthy and strong every time, though only a few of us really work towards that.

Healthy eating is equal to a healthy body since it is usually said that you are what you eat. Even when you want to be that loving mum, you still need to make sure that you keep control of what gets into your children’s stomach. Of what point is it to keep hiding the fact that we are trying to satisfy their every desire when we end up letting them develop an unbalanced and dangerous eating culture.

More often, our food preferences as adults might vary from that of our children. So, when we say that you should keep control of their ingestion, we do not mean that you should force all those eating rules that the doctor gave you on them. In fact, some things that the doctor has asked that you stay clear off are things that are very much necessary for the growth and development of a child’s body and this does not also mean that some of these cautions are not things that will be helpful if started early in childhood. Hence, there is a need to strike a balance between these two ends.

In such a family, balancing things might seem very challenging and might even sometimes mean extra work for you. But there is a need to draw a common ground, and there is always one. The priority is making sure that our children get used to healthy eating habits.

Below are a few easy ways to help your children become healthy eaters

Have a feeding schedule

People do not usually pay attention to the fact that setting a stipulated order for anything makes it easier to perform it in an organized manner. Many think it is all about having an organized outer appearance, but in the real sense, healthy living is a function of internal coordination. You would agree with me that a class without a timetable will end up irregular and inept so will our internal system end up if the body does not know when and when not to expect food. Research shows that 78% of children in the world don’t have an orderly eating manner. Sometimes it gets beyond what we eat and becomes more about when and how we eat especially in children. Many do not also know that a meal past 8 pm does more harm than good, particularly for kids. Making a timetable, and even more, following it would ensure a fit eating habit.

Educate them

As children, it isn’t always enough just to say “don’t do it” as this is only going to arouse their curiosity. So if you are going to effect a change, they need to know why they’re to maintain a good feeding practice. They also need to be enlightened about the risks and rewards of eating good food. This way, they won’t view it as just an obligation they just need to fulfill

Fewer junks more food

Even when you want to be the ‘children’s favorite’ kind of mummy that gets them the snickers, and the wavers, and the shortbread, and the sweets of this world. But you have to make them understand that these things have little or no health advantage. Although they are good for just enjoyment purposes at some points, they should be limited so they won’t stand in the way of their appetite for real nutritious food. Children always have their way around getting what they really want, so you would only be able to put this under control with proper monitoring while they stay under your roof, but as something that should follow them even after. More so, you cannot continue handing them fishes without teaching them how to fish; if the act is going to become a habit, you need to teach them how you do ii. This is why it is advisable that you occasionally allow your children to partake in the cooking process; so that they don’t only know the ‘why’ but also the ‘how’.

Introduce new food slowly

Sometimes it might seem like your children are not receptive to a new food, but this solely depends on how you go about introducing it. Before children get familiar with a particular type of meal, they first need to start from learning the aroma. You could start by making little for yourself and your man and if the aroma is inviting, they might be forced to ask: “Mummy what is this?” and then you answer telling them what the dish is and ask “you want to try it?” Do not get worried if you don’t get a yes the first time, but be sure time as time passes they will get used to it. It is not common knowledge but trusts me, the issue of whether or not we like or eat a meal starts from the mind, especially when it comes to picky eaters (believe me, I know one). And since the mind of children is slow to adapt to changes, rushing them might eventually piss them off.

Practice what you preach

Some children don’t just want to hear you say it, they want to watch you do it. I wonder what a mother that takes soft and gala for breakfast in the morning wants to tell her four-year-old daughter about healthy eating. As we know that the first role models a child knows are their parents and whether we accept it or not, we have a great influence on who they grow up to become even concerning something as ‘little’ as feeding. So be the healthy eating bible that they read.

When it comes to feeding, there’s always been this carefree approach and it is very daunting. Almost 60% of the population of Africa eats to survive, rather than to stay healthy and this is a major cause of old age issues. If you start early with your children, you can ensure a healthy lifestyle even in their future. Apart from the above-listed points, it is also vital that you make sure that you remain the personal cook of your children; this will help make sure that you can supervise all that goes in their belly. The adults who say “I don’t eat out” started with such culture from a very tender age, and it is a very good way to ensure hygienic feeding and proper monitoring. Conclusively, you also need to ensure that the family eats together, so as to spread this culture around the family and make sure there is strict compliance with the timetable and other parameters that have been set to guarantee a healthy practice.

Geoffrey Nevine — IT Services and IT Consulting

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