Build Healthy Eating Habits Now

Today, we have a guest blogger...Mary D'Anza, RD, LDN.  She has been a Registered Dietitian for 8 years and is Certified in Childhood and Adolescent Weight Management and has also completed culinary school.  She is currently working with children and their families teaching simple and realistic ways to incorporate healthy and delicious foods into their daily lives. 

The rise of childhood obesity in America is no secret.  Now that we know obesity can lead to life threatening diseases, such as cardiovascular disease and Diabetes, as well as pose psychosocial risks, it is important that we help promote health and wellness within our children and families.  Parents have the prime responsibility to establish solid nutritional eating habits that a child will take with them for the rest of their lives.  Parents are the role models for their children and there is no better time to promote healthy eating than now.

Here are some basic tips to help you and your family adopt a healthy attitude about food.

1. Provide structured mealtimes including breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks spaced far apart from one another.   This will limit "grazing" throughout the day, which tends to include high fat and high sugar foods.

2. Allow the child to determine when he or she is full and don't force the child to clean their plate. 

3.  Choose a variety of healthy foods to ensure your child gets all the energy, protein, vitamins and minerals they need.  Focus on whole grains, fruits, vegetables, low-fat dairy foods, lean meats and protein-rich foods, and heart-healthy oils.  Check out MyPyramid.gov to find recommendations to incorporate all foods into your child's diet.

4. Eating right is only one piece in the puzzle to combating childhood obesity.  We also want to make sure that our children are active.  Focusing on playing and having fun is almost more important than what exercise and activity the child does. 

Solid eating habits including delicious nutritious foods and increasing physical activity are two great ways to promote health and wellness in your family.

For more information on healthy eating habits for your children, check out the USDA's website that contains information about the Mypyramid (a personalized eating plan) and many other helpful tips. 

 http://www.mypyramid.gov/index.html)

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  • Great entry! I grew up in a European family where eating was a ritual. Plus, my parents and grandparents faced no food days and hardships while being in Displaced Persons camps during WWII. So, my sister and I were always taught to not waste and eat all our food. It's difficult to break that pattern, but I try!

  • Great informative. Thank you!
    Ben Huynh REALTOR

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