The UK government has just unveiled a childhood obesity plan as a knee jerk reaction to the Covid-19 pandemic. As we have seen, obese and overweight people are more likely to be severely affected by coronavirus. Naturally, therefore, they are wanting us to eat more healthy and more healthy eating for kids.
With healthy eating, there will be an additional benefit. This benefit of not getting a condition that would put you in the vulnerable category. Those in the vulnerable category are more likely to also get severely affected by Covid-19 if they catch the deadly virus.
Conditions that healthy eating can help (according to the World Health Organisation) include
- Type 2 Diabetes
- Heart Conditions
- Cardiovascular Disease
- Dental Disease
Therefore, healthy eating just doesn’t keep those extra pounds away. Healthy eating can help to reduce your risk of getting any of the above conditions. But as adults starting healthy eating can be hard to do.
Having built up so many bad eating habits can be hard to remove. But we can do it by being a role model to our kids when we are trying to get them to eat more healthy.
How can we expect our kids to eat healthy when we are shoving junk in our mouths?
This is why we should be a role model to our kids in healthy eating. In turn, we all become healthier as a family and everyone reduces risks of obesity or any conditions associated with not doing healthy eating.
Here are 3 tips for how you can eat healthy with your kids.
#1 Sit At The Table
If your dining table is anything like mine, it has become an area for homeschooling. Start putting those books and stationary away at meal times. Start reusing your dining table as a place to have your meals.
Studies show that if we sit at the table as a daily at meal times, this happens
“It allows children control over the type and amount of food on their plates and helps them to self-regulate energy intake. Similarly sitting at meals together, with the adults as models for healthy eating, are linked to healthier eating practices.”US Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
Take action and get back into the routine of sitting at the table at meal times. We have recently got back into the habit of having breakfast at the dining table. Then having an evening meal together at the dining table.
With having the evening meal together, it has got us talking more. Talking about their questions as to what is going on in the world, if the virus is over yet, and what change there will be with the next school year.
Ultimately, having meal times at the dining table has made meal times a more joyful experience which has also boosted our mental health.
#2 Change Your Snacks
Snacks are always in constant demand when you have kids at home. So we are very tempted to just give them a packet of crisps and then send them on their way. But all this is doing is increasing their risks of weight issues, in turn leading to other health problems.
So instead we have developed a snack pot. A snack pot where we have
- 1 small treat (fun size chocolate/sweets or a bag of crisps)
- A yogurt
- Portion of fruit
- Small handful of nuts or a small piece of cheese
What this does is create a balanced snack that has fibre, protein, vitamins, minerals, and a small bit of the naughty stuff. Creating this balance snack has reduced the need for endless snacks as it keeps children fuller for longer.
Top benefit to mums: keep the shopping more predictable as to how many snacks you need to have in stock.
#3 Remember Your Plate
That plate where you can clearly see how much vege, protein, and carbs that you need on one plate.
It is a great reminder of what we should be putting on our plates for an evening meal. Also, I have developed a new strategy for evening meals. You see my daughter loves her potato waffle with dinner.
These potato waffles have 4.7g of fat each. This for me is way too much. So for 4 nights a week (Sunday – Wednesday), I use a handful of new potatoes instead. My daughter has not once complained, especially as I am adding them to my own meals. Therefore, she is seeing it as normal and she is not feeling deprived from them as she has potato waffle on the other 3 nights of the week.
In A Nutshell,
Our health is vital and always has been, not just because of Covid-19. So by helping our kids to eat healthily, we are growing healthy adults who have a healthy attitude towards food. Also as we are showing kids to do healthy eating, we are making ourselves healthier and living healthier lives.
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