A healthy nutrition is especially important during childhood. Those years shape healthy eating and drinking habits.
Parents, grandparents and caregiver steer the development of food preferences, which usually stay with us for the rest of our life. This includes choices of foods as well as eating behavior. Rational arguments, like „you have to eat fruits, they are healthy“, aren’t effective with kids. Caregivers have to lead by example by executing the desired eating habits in order to get the child to imitate those habits. Children also learn the preoccupation during meals from their caregivers.
If the parents eat in front of the TV, the child will adopt that behavior. It is very important to focus on one’s meal. If we are distracted, by watching TV or doing homework, it can mean that we don’t feel our satiety and eat more than our body needs and can lead to obesity.
Not all food preferences are learned though. Research shows that children prefer sweet foods to bitter foods. The reason for that is that there are no poisonous foods, which taste sweet. This represents a protection against eating poisonous foods, especially during childhood.
A balanced energy intake prohibits the development of over- or underweight. Children have to receive enough energy in order to grow.
Starting from age one a diversified meal plan is recommended. Like with adults, all foods are allowed, in the right quantities. The important thing is to include all essential nutrients and reduce foods high in fat and sugar.
To reach the daily water demand of the body children should primarily drink water. Sweet drinks contain too much sugar and should only be consumed occasionally. Instead of water, teas or thinned juices can be an alternative.
Eat fruits and vegetables
Fruits and vegetables are rich in healthy ingredients and belong in the daily meal plan. Use the diversity of the many different, especially seasonal, kinds.
Breakfast, lunch, dinner, as well as snacks in between meals provide your child with enough energy to get powerful through the day. Skipped meals or constant nibbling can lead to loss in concentration and cravings. This tends to result in obesity.
Try to offer your children the diversity of foods without giving into commercials and convenience food. Daily vegetables, fruits, whole grain products, dairy, frequently fish, eggs and meat. Foods high in fat and sugar should only be consumed in small quantities, although children often demand them and they can be easier to prepare.
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