Create Healthy Habits in Your Children that Last a Lifetime

healthy children 300x217 Create Healthy Habits in Your Children that Last a Lifetime

One of the best ways to prepare your children for a long and healthy life is to set the example of a healthy lifestyle early! When the mom and dad practice healthy habits, children are more likely to not only follow suit, but to stick with those habits later in life.

Here are six healthy habits to begin instilling in your children now.

1.  Drink MORE Water. Most of us just don’t drink enough water. Sure, we’re hydrated but it’s often with calorie, caffeine and sugar heavy beverages. Skip the soda, juice and sweetened drinks and stick to water. It may be a tough transition for the entire family, so don’t just remove everything from your house at once. As with all of the changes we suggest here at The Intentional Lifestyle, make this one gradually if there is major resistance. Here are some tips to  keep water consumption from getting boring!

2.  Get Moving. Find a way to be active each and every day. Walk or bike to places when you can. Take hikes and family walks together. Play sports or engage in physical activities. The more you’re active as a family and on your own, the more your children will be active too. An active lifestyle is one of the most important keys to a healthy mind and body.

3.  Reduce Sugar Intake. Sugar is in just about everything we eat. It’s in bread, sauces, it’s sometimes even in lunchmeat. Help your family break the addiction to sugar by choosing low sugar and no sugar options. Cookies and snacks are okay every once in a while, but they shouldn’t be an everyday choice. Have a look at these tips to make snack time healthy and tasty!

4.  Eat More Often & Less Portions. We’re a super-sized society. We’re accustomed to eating a lot during mealtime. Work on eating smaller portions during mealtime. Serve more vegetables on the plate and less protein and starchy carbohydrates. Eating smaller meals 5-6 times a day is a great way to make this a habit.

5.   Take It Back to the Kitchen. Takeout and prepackaged foods are sometimes necessary, but they’re usually not healthy. However, when a family makes food at home using fresh produce they’re more likely to eat healthy and to develop a healthy relationship with food. Make cooking a family activity on the weekends when everyone is home together and pre-cook and prep as much as you need for the upcoming week.

6.  Appreciate Food for What It REALLY Is. There’s nothing wrong with children consuming treats in moderation. When people have a healthy appreciation for food, they naturally eat healthier. However, when they use food to soothe their emotions or as a reward, it creates a misguided relationship with food. Children can and will learn to turn to food as a coping mechanism. Parents can help by not using food as a reward or punishment.

As a parent, it’s your responsibility to be actively performing healthy habits yourself – you are your child’s first and most influential role model. They watch, they emulate and they adopt your behaviors.  Just like your children will follow your lead when it comes to other areas of life, as your child grows they’ll also learn about healthy living from you. Creating healthy habits as a family will help your children grow up healthy and strong because they will then take what you’ve taught them and apply it to their adult lives as well.

The coaching team here at The Intentional Lifestyle would love to help you create healthy habits that will last your children for the rest of their lives! Sign up below and we’ll send you an entire week of ideas, tips, and resources to get started!

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