Do you struggle to get your kids to eat vegetables? Do they always choose sweets and crisps over nutritious snacks? Everyone knows it is a struggle and that is why here at Scottish Slimmers you can learn some top tips for getting your kids to eat healthy.
Remember, children are not born with a craving for pizza and chips and a hatred for broccoli and carrots. They are surrounded by junk food adverts and fast-food restaurants, exposing them to constant unhealthy choices. With busy schedules and never-ending running about, it is no surprise that children become accustomed to on the go snacks and quick meals instead of siting down to a nutritious dinner.
Teaching children the importance of healthy eating from an early age makes developing healthy habits much easier and promotes life long healthy choices. If they learn healthy habits, they are less likely to become obese, develop heart problems and will have improved mental and emotional wellbeing.
Our top tips for getting kids to eat better will hopefully make your life as a parent a lot easier:
1. Be a role model:
Children look up to their parents and follow in their footsteps. If you are eating burgers and pizzas every night, never sitting down at the table to enjoy your meal, children will follow suit and assume this is how it should be done.
By learning how to shop and cook healthily, you are on your way to teaching your children how to live a healthy life.
2. Disguise vegetables:
Instead of throwing a plate of carrots and broccoli at your children which you know they will turn the nose up at, why not add them to stews, mince or mash carrots into mash potato. I doubt they will even notice them and eventually you will be able to give them a plate with vegetables and tell them that they have been eating them every night for the past month without even noticing.
3. Cook more meals at home:
As much as eating out can be a time to socialise and bond with your family, it can come with a cost. Restaurant meals are high in sugar, unhealthy fat and high in calories.
You can bond just as much, if not more, by cooking at home. Get everyone involved with the children grating the cheese and setting the table and parents chopping the vegetables and cooking the meal. By everyone participating, you can bond over a few hours cooking together and then enjoy the delicious, healthy meal you have cooked together.
4. Keep healthy snacks on hand:
More often than not, children ask for a snack when they are bored rather than hungry. Instead of filling the cupboard with sweets, chocolate, crisps and fizzy drinks; try stocking up with water, milk, fresh fruit and vegetables, nuts, seeds and plain popcorn. Your children will get into a habit of eating these products rather than sweets when they are hungry.
5. Curb picky eating:
If your children are picky eaters, they are likely to be going through a normal developmental stage. It takes many tries for advertising to convince an adult consumer to buy. This is the same for most children who take 8-10 presentations of a new food before they will openly accept it.
Keep trying your children with different variations of healthy food, presented in different ways. Eventually they will begin to like it and will be more open to trying new food.
A great recipe that involves all the family.
Salmon pasta with peas- Serves 4, FG 0 using 1 GC / CC 13
240g whole wheat pasta
1 large shallot, finely chopped
140g frozen peas
2 skinless salmon fillets, cut into chunks ]140g low fat crème fraiche
1/2 vegetable stock cube
small bunch of chives
1. Boil the pasta according to pack instructions.
2. Heat he spray oil in a pan. Add the shallot and cook for 5 minutes. Add the peas, fish, crème fraiche and 50ml water. Crumble in stock cube. Cook for 3-4 minutes until cooked. Snip in the chives and a sprinkle of black pepper.
3. Stir through the pasta and serve.