It is quite natural for any child to dislike new kind of food right away. It may take 10 or more tries getting a child to accept a new food. It is essential for parents to be patient if you want your child to eat right and healthy. For overall growth and development, parents should offer kids foods from each of the food groups.
Some ways to develop your child’s healthy approach towards eating:
– Cut down on the amount of fat in your family’s diet. Include low fat dairy products, lean meat, fat free cereals or breads.
– Avoid restricting sweets or desserts. Fat, salt, sugar have a moderate place in our diet. Don’t curb them completely. Just teach your child to take small portions of it.
– Make or keep a wide variety of healthy foods ready at home to be eaten as snacks. Do allow occasional indulgence of chips, colas, and cookies. This way kids won’t be overwhelmed during play dates or parties at school.
– Eating slowly helps to detect hunger and fullness better. Encourage your child to eat slowly.
– Eating meals together with family helps children. Meal time with family can be pleasant with free flowing, lighthearted conversations about the day, etc.
– Activities like shopping for food and preparing meals are fun time for children. Both, parents and children learn about each other’s food preferences and enjoy the time spent together.
– Eating meals and watching TV at the same time makes it difficult to pay attention to fullness and may lead to overeating.
– Sending children to bed without eating food may give them the impression that they will have to go hungry. So they may try to eat whenever they get a chance. Avoid using food as punishment.
– If your kid is having lunch at school, find out more about the lunch program. If you pack your child’s food include a variety of foods in proportion to the food pyramid. While dining out, pick healthier items.
– If you as parents eat healthy nutritious food, your child tends to learn and pick up similar eating habits. Set a good example by eating a variety of nutritious foods and snacks. Teaching your child healthy eating practices early in life will help develop an approach to eating food with the right attitude.