Like most moms, good nutrition for your kids is important. It’s not always that easy to do, but certainly can be done by following a few steps. The first and most important is to have healthy foods in the house and ready to snack on and eat at meals. If you don’t have junk available, all your kids will know is healthy food. If you’re making a switch from junk food to healthier eating, it’s more of a challenge, but still can be done.
Don’t force kids to eat healthy food.
The minute you force kids to eat new foods, automatically, they know they won’t like it. If you’re introducing new food to a child, you can put some on their plate and see if they’ll try it, without the hassle and tears of just one bite. Some parents don’t give their child any of the newly introduced food, but serve it to themselves, saying they don’t think they’ll like it because it’s for adults. That alone makes kids want to try it. Smart moms make food look appealing and fun, so there’s no doubt kids will love it.
Make eating healthy more fun with meals kids will love.
If you want kids to enjoy their meals, make them fun. Make your own taco or burrito night can be one way to do it. Have plenty of healthy options ready to pile on the taco or burrito, like the traditional lettuce, tomato, onion, taco meat and cheese, plus other options, such as avocado chunks, sweet potato squash filling—instead of refried beans—mixed mushroom sauté and Greek yogurt. There are fun recipes that kids will love that combine fruits and vegetables with flour, eggs, a small amount of sugar and spices for fruit and vegetable muffins. Smart mom’s even let kids help make these, so they see how delicious fruits and vegetables can be.
Real mom nutrition includes what the kids drink.
You may think that you’re doing your child a favor by providing fruit drinks, but you’re not. Neither are sugar drinks and soft drinks appropriate. Smart mom’s make sure the fluid is as healthy as the food. One problem with fruit juice is that it’s missing important fiber and far more calorie laden than eating the fruit. Instead, have bottled water on hand for the kids. Frozen fruit or ice cubes with fruit in can add a cold treat while adding flavor. A tiny refillable bottle also makes it easier for kids to drink. Even adding some juice or berries to make it more flavorful will boost their desire to drink it.
- Make healthier French fries in the oven from sweet potatoes. You can even make sweet potato chips and kale chips for snacks.
- Homemade trail mix in individual single serving baggies, popcorn, and fun treats like ants on a log—celery with nut butter topped with raisins—can make kids look forward to healthy treats.
- Never give kids junk food as a special treat or reward. It makes it look far more appealing and desirable. When eating in restaurant, choose healthy several healthy options and let your child pick from those.
- Teach your children to make their plate a rainbow. Each colorful fruit or vegetable contains specific nutrients that often relate to the color it is. When you have a plate filled with a rainbow of colors, you’re more apt to have all the nutrients you need.