Is your child addicted to junk food? Junk food addiction in kids is a present reality most parents have to deal with on a daily basis. It gets to a point that the child won’t eat anything else. This can lead to two outcomes – either the child is underweight because they do not get enough nutrients from other food groups, or, they become overweight due to the unhealthy nature of junk foods. Here are ways to get your child off junk food and on track to a better life.
Ways to help child addicted to junk food
Answering the Whys
Try your best to explain why you are cutting off junk food. This however only works if they are old enough to understand. Put it in a way a child will comprehend. It’s a good idea to put emphasis on how it will help them grow and be strong and healthy.
You will be met with protest but you have to stay strong and not give in. Remember, you are the adult and as such you get to decide what you eat in your house. Acceptance won’t happen overnight but always keep in mind that it is for the greater good.
Lead by Example
Monkey see, monkey do. Children are very impressionable and at a young age you are all they look up to. Leading a heathy life yourself will bring them closer to breaking their junk food addiction. It is easy to to put a plate of veggies in front of them but they also have to see you putting efforts into improving your eating habits.
Thankfully there are recipes available showing how to make healthy but tasty food. Try these 7 foods for strong bones for your child.
Get them on their feet
Junk food makes people sluggish and encourages inactivity. Sugary treats might give kids a burst of energy but that runs out as quick as it started. Regulating what they put in their bodies is great but they need to jump around and burn some calories.
They can do this while playing outdoors but in extreme cases, a work out plan will come in handy. This is an activity you can do together with them to boost morale. Refrain from rewarding them with junk food when they accomplish a task. It will just take you back to square one.
Take them grocery shopping with you
Walk through the isles picking foods that are good for you with them. Use the opportunity to teach them about the benefits the foods have. Kid’s snacks tend to be brightly colored and thus attractive to them. Take this chance to tell them about all the ones that are natural and artificial. Show them how to comprehend labels and recognize the worst food additives. There are brands that do make healthy snacks, be on the lookout for them.
Make meals together
As a parent you can make this step fun and educational. Your kids also pick up a necessary survival skill. Little kids love feeling involved so you can give them small responsibilities in the kitchen. They will end up getting dirty and leaving a mess but it’s a necessary sacrifice towards a healthy future.
Cutting up fruit and vegetables in fun shapes will bring them joy and encourage them to try them. It’s a free math lesson too because they get to learn about portions and servings.
Pack healthy lunch and snacks
The ease with which they can get unhealthy snacks and juices is a deterrent to a healthy journey. Make healthy alternatives home. You are going to have to be creative here. Packing a healthy lunch does not always guarantee that they will eat it.
Fruits and nuts are fun and easy for kids to eat, besides being colourful. Granola bars, fun sandwiches will be a hit with them. Watch out for portions here so food does not go wasted.
Offer water to your children so they can develop a good drinking habit. Let them pick a water bottle they like to encourage it. They do not have to drink eight glasses like you but get water in them daily. Fruits like watermelons, pineapples and apples have a lot of water so make them a fruit salad. A veggie salad with cucumbers, lettuce, carrots works too. To add a pop of color and so they can still have juice invest in a juicer. There is no one way to have juice, look up fun and easy recipes.