These days parents are struggling to develop healthy food habits in their children. Children are so influence by unhealthy foods that it becomes very difficult for the parents to develop good food habits in them. Let us discuss this issue in detail.
An Ideal Children Diet
Well, a great responsibility lies on parents’ shoulder to provide their children with a good diet. An ideal diet consists of the following:
Milk– Milk is highly rich in calcium, vitamin D and protein besides other things. A proper amount of milk per day varies according to their respective age must be provided to the child.
Apple– The age-old proverb “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” is true even in the modern era. This fruit mainly has Vitamin C and fiber. Most importantly, it is a low calorie
Yogurt– It is a very good source of Calcium, especially for those who do not drink milk.
Cereals– Whole grain cereals are calcium fortified and fiber-rich. This makes them a healthy diet for children.
Vegetables– It is very rare to find a child eating all vegetables. It is generally found that they eat some vegetables then they do not eat others. Therefore, developing the habit of eating all vegetables is a very good step.
Oatmeal– Oatmeal being a fiber food is very good for the health of the child.
These diets should be supplemented with fruits and dry fruits.
The most difficult part of all these is the implementation part. Actually, none of the children follows a proper diet. They are generally attracted to unhealthy foods. They are not mature enough to make healthy choices for themselves. Let us now look into some of the immature choices made by the kids.
Immature Choices Made By Kids-
Fast foods– It has become the most common word in the dictionary of children. It is very difficult to find a child who has not had junk food in his life. These foods are very unhealthy as they contain too much fat and calorie. This has made and is making many children obese.
Preserved foods- We have gained a habit of eating things, which are not fresh and have been packed and preserved by the use of additives. These additives have a harmful effect on the health of an individual.
Snacks– The snacks which have become a part of kids’ diet are devoid of any nutrients and do not serve any healthy purpose.
Cold drinks- Cold drinks are carbonated drinks which when consumed have a detrimental effect on the body.
Sugar candies– Sugar candies contain excessive sugar in them. Excessive sugar is a home of many diseases, most importantly, diabetes.
Chocolate, pastries, cakes– These are composed of many unhealthy ingredients which when excessively consumed has a negative impact on the health of the kids.
Cheese– Although cheese is not that harmful, nevertheless these days children have made it a part of their breakfast, dinner, and lunch. Actually, this extra footage is harmful.
Apart from this, there are various other immature choices made by children these days.
How Advertisements Is Influencing On The Food Habit Of Children?
When we talk about the influence of advertisements on the food preferences of children, one thing comes into my mind. If these advertisements had no role to play, then why would all the companies pay so much for the advertisements? Well, the logic is very simple. These advertisements have an impact on the choice of kids. Most of the kids consider what they see is real. They believe the virtual world of television to be real. They actually take these advertisements very seriously and frame their diet chart and routine keeping them in mind. In fact, they are attracted to these unhealthy foods because of the advertisements shown.
Harmful Effects Of Unhealthy Diet On The Health Of Children
When children are exposed to the unhealthy food, they tends to develop dietary problems. The various risks posed by the consumption of these unhealthy foods are-
- Chances of memory loss
- Reduced learning capacity
- Decreased energy level
- Enhanced chances of dementia
- Lose control of appetite
- Stunted growth
- Increase in blood pressure
- Risk of any chronic illness
- Lack of concentration
- Risk of diabetes
- Chemical changes leading to depression
- Risk of obesity
- Improper digestion
- Developing the tendency of uncontrolled cravings
- Impatient behavior
- Increased fatigue in the body
Solution Available to the Parents
Make a daily routine/schedule- Set a daily routine for your child. This should include a daily chart of his breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Every day in the routine should have some unique dish. This will develop a habit of healthy eating in the child. Always remember, homemade food are always necessary to young ones.
Remove junk foods & add dry fruits– It is the duty of the parents to keep the junk food out of sight of the kids.
Try snacks filling– Snacks filling is a good option to stop the food cravings in the child. This filling can be made of anything rich in protein and fat.
Encourage the child to opt for fruits and vegetables– Children should be encouraged to eat a good amount of fruits and vegetables.
Involve the child in food preparation– Involving children in food preparation helps a lot. Actually, they develop an interest in food by this medium.
Set a limit– Make a detailed outline of the maximum amount of unhealthy food the child can eat in a week.
Develop good habits– Children learn from their parents. They imitate what their parents do. Hence, it is very important for the parents to eat healthy food themselves, and then only they can teach their kids to eat healthily.
Put a limit on watching TV– TV acts as a catalyst by exposing children to advertisements. So, it is better to cut down TV watching.
Be patient– Parents need to be patient and they should not impose themselves on the kids.
Hence, one can say that parents play a significant role in shaping the life of their children. It is their responsibility to make a good one.