HEALTH: Teach your Children about the Healthy Eating Habits

by Vaseem Sulthana

“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” — Lao Tzu

These days where health has become a big concern for everyone, there is no choice left other than developing a healthy lifestyle and healthy eating habits. Opting for healthy food should be the first priority not only for adults but also for children. Junk food VS Healthy food is an old age war that is going on with everyone.

Though we might start our day with an apple but end up eating brownies or burgers. Sometimes it becomes very difficult to avoid junk food as they are “A pleasure” to our taste buds. The french fries are very tasty than a bowl of fresh fruits. Our moods are also dependent on these yummy chocolate fudges, pastries and ice-cream and so on.

By the time, we are in the 30s and 40s, it is high time to realize the importance of healthy food and the damage that junk food does to our health. Junk food is high in calories and less in nutritional value. It increases not only our weight but also weakens the ability to produce insulin. Hence it leads to Diabetes.

Packed and processed food that is high in Trans fat, sodium and hydrogenated oils which results in many chronic diseases. It is very convenient to indulge in these packed food items to pack the children’s lunch box or after school snacks.

The studies have shown that children who eat junk food 3-4 times a week are more likely to lack in math and reading ability compared to other children. Blood sugar level fluctuates and results in mood swings and lack of alertness, causing poor participation in classrooms.

We as caretakers of our children and are responsible for what they eat and how much more nutrition is required. Luckily, the schools are now working hard to bring awareness among children as well as parents. The school my daughter goes to emphasis so much on getting healthy snacks and lunch box, that my daughter questions me every day about what is being packed. It inspires me to pack healthy tiffin box for my daughter.

Discipline begins at home. We need to bring awareness to parents and children to avoid junk food and replace it with healthy food for the betterment of our children’s health.

The following few tips I would like to share to avoid junk food at home.

1. Be a good role model, start eating healthy to set an example.

2. Stop buying all the junk food that is usually stocked up in our pantries.

3. Replace junk food with homemade snacks and develop a habit of eating fruits for evening snacks.

4. Plan meals aforetime, which would be much easier not to fall into the trap of grabbing junk.

5. Replace sugar with jaggery and honey.

6. Include high- Proteins diet, which reduces the craving for junk food.

7. The food that is being served at home should be presented in an attractive way.

8. The food which we eat outside should be made at home with the same look.

9. Involve children in cooking and preparing meals, this is an effective way to encourage children to eat homemade food.

10. Start doing exercise along with children which brings everyone together and builds a healthy mindset for the whole family.

These are my few basic tips to avoid junk food. Please share your tips and thoughts.

Article first published on MomPresso.