Guide, Don’t Dictate When Teaching Healthy Eating Habits

To make sure your child develops healthy eating habits, start them at a young. Instead of just telling, show them how to be healthy. Involve them in making choices and do not make a habit of making some foods the enemy. By doing these things, it can help your child develop a healthy relationship with food for a lifetime of good habits. Remember that though you cannot control how much they eat, you can control what they eat (eg. healthy swaps and nutritional alternatives like Pediasure 3+ instead of fast-food shakes). Here are 3 good practices to keep in mind when guiding your child through ways of developing healthy eating habits.1, 6

Be the guide, not the dictator

Some parents fall into the habit of using the “I’m the parent, don’t question me” statement to make their child eat. This may work for a while, but run the risk of having your child develop a bad relationship with food. A parent’s unhealthy attitudes with food can get very easily passed down to their children. For this reason, it’s never too early to start modeling healthy-eating habits so that your children may follow suit. Make a wide variety of healthy options available in the house and nothing is considered off limits, but are available for occasional treats.1, 2

Plan for Snacks

When you plan for snacks at specific times of the day, you can control your child’s hunger ques without spoiling the actual meal. Snack time is also a great time to include the items that did not get included during the mains and it is an opportunity to have them be healthy. Children love snack time and they will respond better to food if they have a bit of say in it. Without disallowing the occasional handful of chips or a few cookies, have many varieties of fruits, low-fat yogurts, peanut butter jelly sandwiches and whole-grain crackers with cheese. You may even have fruits prepped in easy to eat slices or cubes. Children will most likely eat what is available, so it is within a parent’s power to limit the options of sweets and fast foods in the household.3, 4

Believe in your child’s likes and dislikes  

Your child knows their own appetite and likes or dislikes. Forcing them to clean their plate will only further distance them from that item. You have to accept the fact that your child may request the same favorite item over and over again, while it is like tug of war with others. Kids love making decisions and providing alternatives to their dislikes is a great way to get them to try new foods. You may not be able to control the quantity they eat, but you most definitely can control the quality.3, 5

Developing good habits takes time and that is why it is important to always look for ways to incorporate healthy options into daily meals. Good eating habits now will possibly lead to a lifetime of healthier choices for your child. But when food alone is not enough, a complete balanced child nutrition supplement like Pediasure 3+ can help. PediaSure 3+ has been formulated with 37 vital nutrients, including Arginine and Natural Vitamin K2 to support catch-up growth in children who need it.^^ Pediasure 3+ can be served as a snack, with meals, or as per Pediatrician’s directions.

If you would like to try before going for the full course, visit Pediasure Myanmar today to sign up for free samples.

References:

  1. https://www.webmd.com/children/kids-healthy-eating-habits
  2. https://www.nytimes.com/article/kids-healthy-eating-habits.html
  3. https://health.clevelandclinic.org/5-dos-and-donts-for-teaching-kids-good-eating-habits/
  4. https://www.verywellfamily.com/how-to-build-healthy-eating-habits-in-kids-620670
  5. https://kidshealth.org/en/parents/habits.html
  6. https://pediasuremyanmar.com/formulation-support/

^^   Alarcon PA, et al. Clin Pediatr (Phila). 2003

Additional Readings:

  1. https://pediasure.com/healthy-eating-kids/feeding-children