"40 Ways to Teach Your Kids Healthy Habits" Review

Are you struggling to find ways to teach your kids healthy habits? I've found several easy ways that you can adopt today that will change your kids' health for a lifetime (from healthy habits list "40 Ways to Teach Your Kids Healthy Habits").

MAKE VEGGIES THE BASE OF EVERY MEAL


You wouldn’t build a building without a solid foundation, so why would you make a meal that’s got a less-than-solid core? Making vegetables the centerpiece of your meals means you’ll almost automatically eat fewer calories while loading up on vitamins, minerals, and fiber. This doesn’t mean eating only salad, either — stir-fries, curries, spring rolls, soups, and even enchiladas can all fit into this healthy eating plan.

Personal Trainer Wisdom: If you train your kids to make vegetables the center of each meal, they will be more likely to do the same. Not only create this type of plate but also discuss the reasons why you should choose these foods (think Popeye and spinach).

KICK SODA TO THE CURB


Soda is one of the worst offenders when it comes to sugar, calories, and high fructose corn syrup in our kids’ diets. Research suggests that soda is among the biggest contributors to our ever-growing obesity epidemic, and all those extra calories provide zero nutritional benefits. Give your kids a healthy start by saying to no soda, whether regular or diet. If they’re eager to enjoy a fizzy drink, give them unsweetened seltzer with just a squeeze of fresh lime or lemon juice,

Personal Trainer Wisdom: Luckily, kids aren't employed and receive a wage. They most likely would waste their whole paycheck on soda and candy. I grew up with a new 2-liter of RC in the fridge every other day. Let's be honest. If something is in the house, you or the kids are mostly to consume it. Resist the temptation and don't buy it. Instead, teach your kids about a healthy alternative to satisfy that want.

SWAP IN VEGGIES FOR NOODLES


Yes, it’s adorable to hear little kids mispronounce “spaghetti.” However, those white noodles you’re buying at the supermarket may have the not-so-adorable effect of prompting serious food cravings in your kiddos and adding to their risk of diabetes and obesity. Instead, buy yourself a spiralizer and make your own noodles from vegetables like zucchini and yellow squash. Not only are they preservative-free and lower in calories, but they’re also quicker to cook than your regular boxed pasta.

Personal Trainer Wisdom: While this substitution might be a tough sell, it can be convincing...especially if you invite them to help. Call it a nutritious edible art project! Spaghetti squash is also an option.

CUT OUT FRUIT COCKTAIL


Fruit is such a healthy and delicious snack, but somehow, companies have managed to make it bad for you in so many surprising ways. One such unpleasant iteration comes in the form of fruit cocktail, a syrup-laden, sugar-packed treat that’s marketed under the guise of health food. With way more calories and sugar than a fresh piece of fruit, tons of artificial dyes and preservatives, and potentially-obesogenic BPA in the can, you’re far better off giving your kids something else.

INSPECT LABELS FOR HIGH-FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP


Even if you’re not a family with a shared sweet tooth, you may be eating more high fructose corn syrup than you bargained for. High fructose corn syrup is being added to everything from condiments to whole grain bread these days, so it’s of the utmost importance you read the nutrition labels before you put even seemingly-healthy items in your cart. Research conducted at Princeton University reveals that consumption of high fructose corn syrup caused greater increases in body fat, weight, and triglyceride levels in rats than consuming a greater number of calories in sucrose.

Personal Trainer Wisdom: I think we see a theme here. Any food served in syrup or with the word 'syrup' in the ingredients should be taken out of the cart. Why challenge your child's health with ingredients that can lead to obesity and diseases? Always choose the simple alternative (and it doesn't necessarily cost more money).

REPLACE MILKSHAKES WITH SMOOTHIES


Treat your kids to a healthy snack that tastes just like a milkshake, but without the calories, sugar, or fat. Vegan smoothies are a great way to give your kids a snack that feels like a treat, but is actually packed with vitamins, minerals, fiber, protein, and antioxidants, making it both filling and great for their health.

Personal Trainer Wisdom: With the right combination of fruits, vegetables, and seeds, your child won't know what they're missing. Don't give up when he or she refuses the first! Continue to experiment with different recipes and you may find a favorite (the same applies to you!).

CHECK FOODS FOR HIDDEN NITRATES


Nitrates are just one of the many preservatives that could be wreaking havoc on your gut health and immune system and may even contribute to the risk of cancer. Even worse, they’re found in countless kids’ foods, from pre-packaged lunches to deli meat. Make sure to inspect the ingredients list of your kids’ food for ingredients like sodium nitrate.

Personal Trainer Wisdom: "That sodium nitrate sounds tasty", says no one ever. If it isn't something that you would taste separately, it shouldn't be in your list of ingredients. While you want to find a quick lunch for your child, you don't need to settle for the cheapest or most convenient product (notice that I didn't say food). If you must serve a lunch meat, Boar's Head meats are the most natural on the market.

SAY NO TO MAYO


Bad news for mayo-phobes: even if you’d never willingly come in contact with the stuff, it may still be sneaking into your food. This high-calorie condiment is added to so many foods, from burger buns to salad dressings, that it’s far more difficult to avoid that you might think — and that means it’s in your kids’ food, too. Make sure you’re not contributing to the calorie creep in their foods by cutting out mayo at home and offering healthy, flavorful fats like avocado in its place.

Personal Trainer Wisdom: As you have found in your diet, little amounts of this and that can easily add up to extra weight. Make every calorie count and choose the most nutrient-dense option. Remember that mayo often offers texture not taste. Experiment with alternatives such as hummus, salsa, or avocado (with portion size in mind, of course).

MAKE HEALTHIER COOKIES


Sugar cookies and gingerbread men may be holiday staples, but for your everyday after school snack, there are healthier options to be had. Fruit-sweetened oatmeal cookies are an easy way to get your kids to eat healthier with no protest; simply combine oatmeal, mashed bananas, almond flour, chocolate chips, and baking powder and bake for a delicious cookie that you can’t believe are good for you.

Personal Trainer Wisdom: I love cookies. Still one of my favorite foods in life...next to my Grandmother's brownies (which I later found out were just brownies from a box). You and your kids should always enjoy the best of life without substituting every food choice with a untasty, healthy alternative. If sweets are part of the daily routine, though, something must give. There's a reason why scientists predict that 1 and 3 people will have or be on the path towards diabetes. You don't need to give up everything, but it's time to strategically replace what's necessary.

CUT OUT JUICE


While many juices may claim to be packed with all the health-boosting benefits of fruit, in reality, they’re doing little more than adding sugar and calories to your child’s menu. Instead, give your kids a healthy alternative by offering them whole fruit and water — the combination will fill them up with fiber and none of the sugar and high fructose corn syrup that’s commonly added to juice.

Personal Trainer Wisdom: Whether the juice is 100% natural or not, it is a carb explosion that send anyone down the path of diabetes (along with your cookies). Stick to the whole fruits and be mindful of the sugars and grains that you're feeding your child (and yourself).

LEAD BY EXAMPLE


You are your child’s first teacher and, ultimately, the inspiration for their behavior, so make sure you’re modeling good eating habits for them in your life. If your children see you regularly snacking on unhealthy foods, it’s likely they’ll emulate that behavior as well. Likewise, if you’re constantly discussing your weight and opting for diet foods or skipping meals, they may have a skewed outlook of their bodies and eating habits. Research conducted at King's College London reveals that parental modeling can do more to shape a child's risk of obesity than restricting their food.

Personal Trainer Wisdom: Modeling great behavior extends beyond the elimination of swear words from your vocabulary. Children are sponges, and they mimic the adult behavior around them. This statement says enough. The habits the develop at an early age could affect them for a lifetime. Sorry, Mom, you were wrong: Children can't eat whatever they want.

What other ways can we teach our kids to eat healthy?

Picture Credit:
Zerobelly.com-Are you responsible for your child's healthy habits?

More to Read:
Check out "The 40 Most Fattening Kids' Menu Meals" Review. This is a list of the most common food items on a kid's menu...and you might be surprised by their stats. Even if you don't have kids you may still want to avoid these foods.

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Article Credit:

Author: Michael Moody Fitness with excerpt sourced from the article " 40 Ways to Teach Your Kids Healthy Habits " on Zerobelly.com.
"40 Ways to Teach Your Kids Healthy Habits" Review
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