1. Choose a Food Lifestyle that Works
Food, not exercise, is key for weight loss. Certain diets can help lose weight and establish healthy eating patterns. That’s because we want to tell to kids that eating for health isn’t just something you do to lose pounds on a scale or to look a certain way. It’s all about fuelling our bodies and giving them the nourishment they need to perform their best, not jumping on fad diets for short-term gains.
2. Say “No” to Processed Foods
Most likely, however, your entire family will see health benefits as soon as you cut out — or at least cut back — on processed foods and extra sugar. You should immediately get rid of refined carbohydrates, as these are empty calories with zero nutritional value.Your best bet is to make your own healthy treats. That way, you’re in control of what’s going into your child’s body.
3. Make It a Family Thing
There’s nothing more embarrassing than having a child eat one meal while everyone else eats something different. So make losing weight and healthy eating something the entire family is doing for everyone’s well-being. Keep tempting foods out of the house. Load the fridge with washed, cut-up pieces of fruit and veggies. Make healthy eating a normal household occurrence, and kids will follow suit.
4. Get Moving with them
If your child enjoys sports, signing him or her up to play after school is an easy way to get your kid moving. Even better, getting active with them is a great way to encourage physical activity and spend more time together. You can go on walks together, go for a jog, do YouTube yoga practices or hit the local pool. They’ll see that being active doesn’t just mean gym class or boring “exercises.”
5. Let them be
Many of us grew up in a time when we were forced to finish off everything on our plates, whether we were still hungry or not. But even babies turn away from milk when they’ve had enough. Similarly, if your child says he or she is not too hungry or fills up before finishing everything, don’t force him or her to eat more.
6. Get them in the Kitchen
Kids are a lot more likely to eat something if they had a hand in making it. Make the kitchen a family-friendly zone. Let your kids wash or chop veggies or do basic cooking tasks like sautéing onions or boiling water. Let them have their say in what recipes the family should eat during the week, and then have them help out.
8. Don’t Demonize Foods
You’re not going to be able to control every single thing your kid eats. There will be visits to friends’ houses, birthday parties and after-school events, especially as they get older. It’s important not to make any food group out to be the worst thing ever. You don’t want children feeling guilty or like they failed if they have a cookie on occasion. Instead, focus on having them notice how they feel after they eat certain foods and understanding that some foods are for special occasions or eaten sparingly.
9. See to Portion Sizes
Until they’re at least teenagers, children should be given “kid-sized” portions. Of course, children’s needs will vary based on their activity, sex, etc. Start by serving a smaller portion. If kids are still hungry, they can get a second serving, rather than starting with two servings worth of food.
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