Tips and Tricks to Get Your Kids to Eat Healthier in 2023Posted on December 15, 2022 by Ladybug Child Care Center
For many parents, the New Year represents a time of change – a period to reevaluate goals and get healthier as the year goes on. And while little ones may protest the decision to put down the pizza and pick up a salad, it’s our job to steer the ship and keep them healthy. If your kids have been eating all the sweets in your cupboard this holiday season, now is the time to start planning a healthier 2023. That’s easier said than done, but with a little discipline and the help of these ideas and tips, living your best life in January is very much possible.
Make Breakfast a Priority
They say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and recent studies show that to be true. Eating a nourishing, healthy breakfast is key for regulating emotions and maximizing academic performance. Enjoying a healthy breakfast is also a much-needed meal for re-fueling your kids’ brains and bodies after a long night’s sleep.
Instead of sugary cereals or syrupy pancakes, serve your bugs something that is low in sugar and high in fiber. That way, they start off their day strong and with plenty of healthy energy. Some choices to consider include fruit and veggie smoothies, nut butters on healthy pieces of bread, and even breakfast muffins. These foods help keep your kids focused and, over time, help them build better breakfast-eating habits.
Ladybug Child Care Center Pro Tip: Get your kids involved in making breakfast! Exercises like chopping up fruit and packing lunch boxes help with organizational and fine motor skills. Just be sure to keep an eye on them!
Create a Schedule for Snack Time
Much like hungry adults, most kids will go for the easiest, quickest option when they’re hungry. Unfortunately, quick-and-easy options are often the worst kinds of foods for children to eat. Instead of satiating them with high-fat and high-sugar foods, create a plan with healthy ingredients. Having healthy snacks and foods ready to go when your kids are hungry gives them a balanced diet and actually saves you time in the long run.
Structure your meals for every three to four hours. Plan for about three meals, two snacks, and plenty of healthy fluids like water or milk every day. Stay consistent with your plan, but if your kids aren’t hungry, don’t force them to eat. That way, your little bugs will begin to develop their own hunger cues and will look to satisfy them with healthy choices.
If you’re constantly on the go, look for foods like carrots, nuts, apples, and other handheld whole veggies and fruits. These foods are great for your kids’ health and are easy to throw in a baggie for quick transportation. Health and convenience for the win!
Picky Eaters? Make a Game Out of Mealtime
They say you shouldn’t play with your food, but rules were meant to be broken (within reason). If your child is giving you pushback about eating healthier in 2023, why not put a fun spin on things? This spin meal plate has allocated spaces for small, manageable food portions that are healthy for most children. In the middle of the plate sits a game spinner, which lets your kids randomly select what they’re going to eat. By making mealtime fun, your kids won’t just be eating healthier – they’ll want to eat healthier.
Get to Dipping
As parents, one of the toughest challenges we face is getting kids to try and enjoy fresh, raw veggies. Packed with nutrients and fiber, veggies like broccoli and carrots are great, but kids hate the taste. Use healthy dips like hummus to your advantage. Even salad dressings like Green Goddess can work. Adding healthy dips to mealtime not only gets your kids to eat their veggies. It may also subliminally teach them the benefits of compromise!
Lead the Way
Our children look to us for everything, from food and drink to love and comfort. They also look to us to set an example. Depending on your little bug’s age, they may already notice your habits – both good and bad. When it comes to eating healthy and living a better life in 2023, you’ve got to lead by example. Does that mean limiting your ice cream at night? It does, but remember, you’re doing it for your kids.
Instead of cookies and candy, buy nutritious foods and snacks for yourself. Tell yourself you’re going to be active as often as possible and follow through with that promise to yourself. It could be as easy as squeezing in a morning or after-dinner walk. Better yet, why not get the whole family involved and go for a walk together? Eating healthier and being active whenever possible is a great way to set an example for your child and be the role model you were destined to be.
Learn More About Our Childcare Centers in Shakopee, Chaska, And Waconia
Choosing the right childcare center for your kids is a big decision. If you’re like most parents, you’re probably grappling with a mix of questions and emotions. As a family-owned and operated childcare center, we know how you’re feeling. We also know how rewarding the right childcare choice can be for both you and your little ones.
At Ladybug Child Care Center, our goal is to provide your children with the opportunity to explore, learn, and grow within a nurturing atmosphere. Everything is designed with your child in mind, from our individualized and nurturing infant program to our stimulating toddler and preschool curricula. We also offer programs for school-aged children through our unique AdventureCentre.
Ladybug is all about meeting the individual needs of your child. When we meet the individual needs of your little bug, we are meeting your needs as a parent.Filed Under: Activities, Nutrition, Tips for Parents