Living a healthy life is not a reserve for the adults, but children as well. I was very impressed when I read about one busy lady taking some time off, to engage children in creating awareness on healthy living.
This one great lady is Michelle Obama. I read that White House organized a state dinner luncheon for over 50 children. These children from across the United States are winners of Mrs. Obama’s healthy lunchtime challenge, which asked children and their parents to create original, nutritious lunch recipes representing each of the food groups.
More than 1,200 children entered this competition and the 54 emerged victors, winning themselves a lifetime chance of a dinner plate at the White House.
It can be uphill a task to get children to eat healthy foods like vegetables and salads. My two sons had a problem with eating carrots cooked in their foods, but I had to devise a way of making them eat the carrots, not in food but drink it raw in their juice.
However, there are some ways that parents can come up with, to get their children eat nutritious foods.
Go to the market with the children
If you take children shopping with you, encourage them to pick foods of their choice. Allow them to pick foods that are nutritious, and make sure to tell them in details why that particular food item is important. Indulge them once in a while, not only will they learn how to buy healthy and fresh foods, but the buying skills as well.
Prepare a menu together
Call each child and ask them to prepare a menu of their choice, for as long as whatever it is they want to try out, includes all the food groups. This way you will be surprised to note that even the vegetables that they so much abhor, will be included in the menu, because they would have wanted it prepared the way they like it.
Cook together with the children
I am a parent so I should know; many of us do not like the presence of children in the kitchen for many obvious reasons. But, children like to be given small tasks to perform and they do so diligently while enjoying themselves. In so doing; you can ask each child to prepare a healthy food of their liking with your help and see how far this will go. I have tried this with my children, who fortunately -like me -they enjoy cooking. This way they are likely to eat more than you expected because children eat more food when they have helped to prepare it.
Let the children prepare the table according to their liking
Many people do not know this; but how you set your dining table will determine the appetite of your family. A badly set table will definitely kill your appetite, but a well arranged table will set the ball rolling towards healthy eating.
Have meals together
I have seen in many homes where children eat alone. Children who eat meals with their families tend to have better appetites, not just because meals are planned, but because of the positive examples that are set at the table.
Empower your children to be agents of change in and away from home. They will not only eat better, they will inspire others to do the same. This way, you will have your children eat healthy foods, without as much as forcing the food down their throats.