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A healthy family diet
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January 8, 2015  |  Written by Carlota Nelson

Here, at The Toy Blog, we´ve written numerous posts on the importance of eating well. They say we are what we eat and eating well gives us the drive to stay healthy, acquire good habits and enjoy life much better. In terms of diets, nutritionists, doctors and paediatricians do not recommend healthy children go on diets because they need the necessary calories and nutrients in order to study, learn and play. After the holidays, however, there are certain diets –healthy and nutritious –that the entire family can enjoy. Here are three suggestions. But before, we´d like to clue you in on how your children can learn to eat healthy and actually like it.

Clues on how to eat healthy at home

An example to follow.  Like everything related to parenting, the best way to cultivate, motivate and encourage children to do things is to set a good example. If they see you exercise and eat your fair amount of fruit and veggies (and see you enjoy it), you´re on the right track. But it´s equally important to limit the amount of portions and eat slow.

Try not to talk negatively about food or transmit a negative attitude towards it. Doctors also suggest we avoid awarding or bribing our children with food.

Keep their tastes in mind. To do so, we must be flexible. If our children don´t care for fish tonight, substitute it for something else but equally nutritious. Give them an option. The less restrictions, the better.

Their opinion is important. The more we have them participate, the better. Ask them what they like and have them help you plan menus, cook, set the table, and encourage them to learn where food comes from and its nutritious values. And always, always, thank the cook.

Snacktime. Try having a lot of fruit and veggies at hand. If they´re washed and cut, it makes it easier for them to snack on. Whole-wheat cookies, nuts and yogurt low in fat are also good options. To learn how to get your kids to eat veggies, read this article published here.

 

Limit, don´t prohibit. Potato chips, candy, sweets, sodas… These are OK every once in a while. And it´s far better to limit the amount they have but never prohibit as that could lead them to devour when we are not looking.

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Family Diets

What we mean by diets is cleansing, not losing weight. In a ranking of 20 health diets to follow, carried out by experts in nutrition and published by U.S. News, the three best to do as a family are:

Dash Diet. Created by the US National Institutes of Health, whose goals are centred on medical research, this diet consists in reducing high blood pressure and avoiding excessive weight. The good thing about Dash is that it offers online tools that tell you how many calories you should be consuming, depending on your age and activity level. This means you can personalize it for your children. It basically encourages you to eat lots of fruit, veggies, grains, meat, chicken and fish. Check out their site to read their delicious recipes?

Mayo Clinic Diet. The idea behind this diet is to replace bad eating habits for good healthy ones. It consists in eating lots of fruit, veggies and whole grains. Apt for any age. The plus is that there is not limit to the amount of fruit and veggies you can eat.

Here is a meal plan and delicious recipes that follow this diet.

The Mediterranean Diet. The emphasis is placed on eating fish, veggies, whole- grains (a source of fibre, vitamins and minerals) and top it off with good olive oil. These foods do not have cholesterol and are low on fat and sodium which helps keep our hearts healthy. Besides being nutritious, this diet is apt for the entire family. To see recipes and weekly menus, check this article out.

Remember to make it fun and be a good example. Are you ready for a healthy diet? Which of these three will be your favourite?

Photo Credits: Jennifer

Photo Credits: Famosa

CATEGORIES: PLAYING TOGETHER  |  TAGS: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
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COMMENTS (2)
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