It can be a challenge, and very draining trying to gets kids into a healthy eating pattern. We have a 4 year old and 8 month old and have experienced the frustrations of preparing a beaut healthy meal which is rudely pushed aside, followed with "can I have a lolly please Mum". Following are 10 ideas we have found helpful to getting our kids to eat well:
- Eat well yourself thus be a good example. Make sure your trolley is full of raw fruit and vegetables, and they get to the table. Kids are watching you all the time
- Take the time to prepare healthy meals. Yes it takes longer to use raw vegetables than out of a processed packet - but good health is worth it
- Start good habits early. Our 8 month old gets plenty of mashed fruit and vegetables
- Get them into the habit of drinking plenty of water. Let them have their own special water bottle and cups with cool straws
- Sweets, lollies, soft drinks, chocolates are not banned, but are a special treat to reward good behaviour, especially eating a healthy main course
- Limit treats - a small soft drink not more than once per week, 2 lollies or less per day
- Encourage your kids to be active. Get them burning energy which leads to a healthy hunger (for an activity idea see Sandpit Diggers)
- Vitamin and mineral supplements are helpful (see the Neways Australia website or local health store for ideas). Our four year old has had a mineral drink and a multi vitamin every breakfast time since he was 1
- Lots of fruit with cereal is awesome for breakfast. Find fruits that they like
- Give them a good balance of good fats; carbohydrates; and proteins.
Thanks for reading and enjoy raising healthy kids.