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6 ways to help your child develop a healthy attitude towards food

We all know that eating a balanced diet is important for our health. But what about the mental and emotional health of your children? This blog post will provide 12 tips to help develop a healthy attitude towards food in your child.  These tips are not just for kids with weight struggles, but also those who have a healthy appetite and still struggle with negative thoughts on food. The goal is to teach them that food can be enjoyed without guilt or shame.  So you might want to read this article if you're worried about how your child's view of food affects their overall well-being!

1. Get your child involved in food preparation

A lot of people know that kids should be involved in food preparation, but not many parents are aware that this can actually help their child develop a healthy relationship to food.  People often think cooking is too difficult for children and they don't want them near the stove because they're afraid they'll burn themselves. This is understandable, but it's also important to teach your child about safety precautions so he or she will be able to cook safely on his or her own one day. Cooking with your kid can take some getting used to, but once you find something he or she enjoys doing it becomes fun! One way to start out is by letting him hold the ingredients while you cut them up into smaller pieces. You can also let him stir things occasionally


2. Serve healthy foods at mealtimes and snacks

It is important to offer healthy foods at mealtimes and snacks. Children need energy from a variety of food groups such as fruits, vegetables, protein sources like meat or beans, dairy products like milk and cheese for calcium, grains for fiber and whole grains. They also need water to stay hydrated. The benefits of eating these nutrient-rich foods include: healthier teeth (fruit sugars scrub away plaque), better immunity (fruits and veggies provide vitamins)and an increased brain power (lean protein supports the development).
You can make it easy by packing their child's lunch box with nutritious items so they have something to eat when they get hungry during the day.


3. Encourage children to try new foods, even if they don't like them the first time

Kids are often reluctant to try new foods, and that reluctance can be frustrating for parents.  It's hard enough to get kids eating healthy without the added challenge of getting them to eat new things, but it's important that your child gets exposure to a wide variety of flavours and textures early on in their life if they're going to enjoy a healthy diet as an adult. Thankfully, there are some tricks you can use with your children to help them learn how delicious food can be:   

a) Make sure you don't make it an issue - think about what other adults would do when served something they didn't like;

b) Serve smaller portions;

c)don't be afraid to change up their meal routine every now and then. For example, if they love pasta one week, go ahead and serve it again next week but switch out the sauce for something different such as tomato sauce with meatballs or pesto sauce with chicken


4. Let kids help themselves as much as possible - put out dishes of cut-up vegetables and fruit for snacking on their own or for making salads with dressing on the side

The first step to healthy eating habits is letting kids help themselves as much as possible. This will allow them to develop a sense of autonomy and independence, which will make it easier for them to learn how to regulate their food intake.  A simple way you can do this is by setting up an area where they're allowed (and encouraged!) to be in charge of the meal: set out all of the ingredients and utensils needed for cooking and let them choose what goes into their dish!


5. Offer a variety of healthy drinks, including water, milk, juice, and seltzer

Kids love to drink. It's a part of their developmental process and as parents we want our kids to be healthy. They might not always know what is best for them, so place your trust in us and offer them a variety of drinks which will help develop their palate for the future.   We all know that milk is one of the healthiest options but there are other great choices out there too! Here are some ideas: water, seltzer with fruit juice or lemonade, milk, yogurt smoothies (with almond milk) and even tea! Let's broaden our palates together by offering up different drink choices every day because it's never too early to teach children about making good food choices.


6. Keep junk food out of sight so there's no temptation to indulge

Kids are always looking for something to eat, but it's important that what they're eating is good for them. When you're trying to get your kids to eat healthier, one of the best things you can do is make sure junk food isn't sitting in plain sight. If there are cookies on the counter or chips in a bowl on the table, your children will have no problem finding them and snacking away without asking permission first. So keep those snacks out of sight so when hunger pangs strike, your children can reach for healthy alternatives instead! You'll be glad you did!

We hope that this article has given you some ideas on how to help your child develop a healthy attitude towards food.  Don’t forget that we also offer organic goji berries by nutrientelements if you want an easy way to add more fruit into their diet. Let us know how these tips helped you out in the comments below or on our social media page!