Importance of Eating Healthy Foods for Kids
Giving healthy and nutritious food to your toddlers and kids is extremely important. Take a look at the importance of eating healthy foods for kids below:
- It helps in the development and improvement of your child’s mind.
- It helps to maintain the healthy weight of your child.
- It helps to stabilize the energy of your child.
- It helps to prevent the development of chronic diseases later in life.
- It helps to even out the moods of your child.
- It helps to prevent the development of any mental health condition in your child.
Which Foods are Included in a Nutritious Diet for Kids?
The diet of your child should consist of the following nutrition-dense foods:
- Vegetables – The diet of your kid should consist of green leafy vegetables, including spinach, beans, peas, etc.
- Fruits – Fresh seasonal fruits should always be included in your child’s diet, such as bananas, apples, oranges, pomegranate, oranges, etc.
- Dairy – You must include dairy food items in your child’s diet, such as milk, cheese, yoghurt, paneer, etc.
- Protein – Protein intake is important in the growing years of your child. Some of the protein-rich foods are eggs, lean meat and poultry, seafood, soya, unsalted nuts, etc.
- Grains – Make sure to include whole grains in your child’s diet, such as whole-wheat bread, corn, oatmeal, etc.
Foods to Avoid Giving to Children
The following foods should be avoided in your child’s diet and should only be given in limited quantities:
- Sugar– Limit the intake of sugar in your kid’s diet, such as white sugar, chocolates, sweets, soda, etc. Instead, you can give them natural sugars like jaggery and honey.
- Junk Food – Avoid giving deep-fried and junk food to your kids that are low on nutrition and increase the risk of obesity and lifestyle diseases.
- Sodium – Lower the intake of sodium in your child’s dietto prevent high blood pressure and heart problems.
- Saturated Fats and Trans Fats – You should avoid giving saturated fats and trans fats to your child as they can increase cholesterol levels and lead to inflammations in your body.
Nevertheless, you must buy health insurance for kids so that you are financially prepared to deal with any medical expenses resulting from your child’s treatment in future.
How to Maintain a Healthy Diet for Your Kids?
Take a look at a few ways of maintaining a healthy diet for your kids:
- Balanced Breakfast– Give your child a balanced breakfast consisting of foods with nutritional value. For example, omelette with toast, peanut butter with toast, hard-boiled eggs with toast and apple, oatmeal, etc.
- Eat Together as a Family – Develop a habit in your child to sit and eat together at the dining table with the whole family. This will help you to monitor the eating habits of your child and ensure that they eat everything on the plate.
- Slowly Switch to Healthier Foods – In case you have been giving a mixed diet to your child so far, you can slowly switch to healthier options to provide nutritious food to them. For instance, you can switch white bread with whole wheat bread, full-cream milk with low-fat milk, ice cream with homemade smoothies, etc.
- Cook More Meals at Home –Make sure to cook most of the meals at home so that your child’s intake of outside food from restaurants and eateries are limited.
- Limit Portion Size of Your Child –Give small portions to your child’s plate to limit their chances of overeating.
8 Important Tips to Get Your Kids to Eat Healthy & Nutritious Food
Given below are eight tips on how to get your kids to eat healthy and nutritious food:
- Imbibe Healthy Eating Habits at a Younger Age– Kids develop a preference for food in the early years of their life. You should start giving healthy foods to your child from a younger age so that they grow to eat them regularly.
- Know What Your Kids Should Eat – Before your child develops preferences in food, you should know what to include in your child’s diet. Make sure to be clear of the foods that you must give as well as avoid giving to your kid.
- Be a Role Model for Your Kids – Most kids copy their parents when it comes to food and lifestyle habits. So make sure to become a role model for your kids and eat what you would like your kids to eat.
- Hide Veggies in Your Kids’ Favourite Foods – If your child creates a tantrum in eating healthy foods and veggies, the best way to make them consume such foods is by hiding them in their favourite foods. This way they will eat veggies without creating a fuss while maintaining a healthy diet.
- Make Foods Visually Appealing –Another way to make your child eat veggies and fruits is by making them visually appealing. You can get a little creative and design your child’s plate in an appealing manner so that meals become fun for them.
- Keep Healthy Snacks Readily Available –Make sure to keep a stock of healthy snacks at home so that your child avoids snacking on junk food, such as chips, soda, etc.
- Focus on the Overall Diet of Your Kid –While giving food to your kids, make sure to focus more on providing a nutritious meal to your kids instead of specific types of food. For instance, try to give them homemade food more instead of packaged or processed foods.
- Serve New Foods When Your Kid is Hungry –Try introducing new food to your child when they are hungry. This will increase the chances of your kid eating the new dish.
Summing It Up
Children can be fussy when it comes to food, which is why giving them healthier foods can be quite a challenge. The above-mentioned tips can help you to get your kids to eat healthy and nutritious food. Moreover, don’t forget to keep health insurance for kids handy so that any unforeseen medical emergency involving your child is taken care of by your health insurance company.
Written By: PolicyBazaar - Updated: 15 November 2021