7 Tips for Healthy Kids

Trying to get kids to eat healthy can be a bit of a struggle. Especially when all they seem to want is chips, soda and candy. We all know how picky children can be when it comes to what they’ll actually eat on their plate. And, let’s face it–all the junk food commercials don’t help. You can make a huge impact on your kids’ food habits to help them grow into healthy, confident adults. Here are a few simple tricks to get your kids eating healthier this new year!

1. Make their school lunch the day before.
Mornings can be busy, so you don’t want to wait until the last minute to pack your kids’ school lunches—or else, you’ll be reaching for those frozen uncrustables. Swap out the white bread with whole-wheat bread to make their favorite sandwich. Make sure to include fruit and veggies as one of the sides!

2. Plan out family dinners for the week.
Yes, it’s easy to call it a day and drive-thru McDonald’s for your kid’s dinner after soccer practice. To resist the easy way out, plan out a few family dinners each week to ensure your children are getting the healthy nutrients they need to grow. Your dinner should consist of whole-grain carbs—like rice or pasta—a fruit or vegetable, and a healthy protein, like lean meat or beans.

3. Try using dipping sauces for those veggies.
It may seem impossible to get some kids to even touch the vegetables you serve. Instead of forcing the healthy food down—bare—try giving them yummy dipping sauces, like ranch or hummus, to experiment with.

4. Say things to persuade the kids to want to eat healthy.
If you tell your children something along the lines of “This is what Michael Jordan eats to stay big and strong,” they might be more inclined to eat that side of broccoli you prepared for dinner.

5. Sneak fiber into their breakfast.
We’ve all heard how breakfast is the most important meal of the day. There are several ways to have the kids eat healthy in the mornings without them even knowing. Skip the Coco Puffs, and buy cereals that are high in fiber and heart-healthy—like whole grain Cheerios. Try adding fruit to the cereal to make it tastier—and healthier! If pancakes and waffles are what your kids are raving for, try making whole-grain batter instead of the freezable packages.

6. Make eating healthy fun.
You’d be surprised with what you can get your children to eat by simply making it fun. Instead of letting your kids reach for the huge bag of Doritos for an after-school snack, try using fruits and veggies to make creative shapes, animals, etc that will excite your kids! An easy example is to have them cut their favorite fruits into different shapes with a cookie cutter, and then make it into a kabob.

7. Have a balance.
If you completely forbid junk foods from your children, it might only make them want it more. Every once in awhile, take them to their favorite ice cream place as a way to reward them. It should be considered a special treat, not an everyday thing.

For more fun kid tips check out our blog. For information about how you can hold a holiday shop this year, check out our website!