Happy New Year Moms,
I am so excited to be in 2017 with you all here with me. 2016 was a good year and I wish all of us a better and more achieving year.
A topic on my mind over the festive period when I had to prepare vegetable salad for a family re-union and I found out that they kids were not just into the veggies. It done on me that a lot of times we moms just think it is too early to introduce our children to a healthy pattern of eating. In the true sense, it is beneficial to start them early enough. This is quite common with African parents- we are so into having fat kids and as a result fail to give our kids what their body truly needs.
This is 2017, let us all make conscious efforts to introduce our children to a healthy eating habit- it really does pay. So instead of fizzy drinks we can substitute with home made fruit juice. Here are some ways you can make our kids love healthy meals.
- Let them see you do it: a lot of times children learn from what they see us do rather than what we ask them to do. So, instead of sitting and insisting they eat vegetables- why don’t you do it and let them watch you do it. My kids love smoothie a lot. As little as they are they know smoothie is non negotiable and that is because they have overtime seen me and daddy drink it as it isn’t a big deal. So they naturally love it. I don’t have to force them to drink it but I make sure I drink along with them.
- Be creative about meals: stop pushing a particular meal down their throats just because you think they do not have a choice. That isn’t nice. Make meal time fun time. Kids understand through play. So be creative with their meals.
- Start early: introduce them early enough. By 6months a baby should be able to start taking bananas and boiled carrots and gradually grow into broccoli and the rest.
- Make healthy snacks available: always have fruits and vegetables around for snacking instead of biscuits and too much chocolates.
- Make a routine: Let your kids have a schedule and a well organised day. Children need to eat every three to four hours: three meals, two snacks, and lots of fluids. This really depends on the child. My kids don’t eat too much. So when it is food time, I make sure they get a well balanced meal. Even when I go out with them, I always have healthy snack for them. Stop depending on fast food, it isn’t so healthy. Know what they eat.
- Plan Meal times: have a menu for them with that you know what the next meal is-in that case you are on top of your game.
- Add what they like: kids have a special kind of meal they really love. If it is healthy the make it part of the menu but if it is not so healthy then add it in the menu sparingly dinners.
- Gradually introduce new meals: do not force meals on them, introduce new meals gradually and slowly.
- Be a role model: I can’t shout this enough-stop acting like an enforcer. Do it as well. Eat healthy.
- Make Meal Times Fun: Kids learn a lot from playing and having fun. Maybe if it isn’t too serious they will warm into it. So try making meal times fun time.
At the end of the day what you want is a healthy child not a fat one. Aim for that by giving your children exactly what their bodies need.
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I am Dr. Christiana Stephen, a wife, a mom of 4 under 4 year old kids, a photo lover, makeup artist, a wellness coach and a lecturer. Motherhood for me is ongoing, its a period of learning and unlearning. I am passionate about a lot of things but most importantly helping mothers around the world reach their wellness goals comes as top priority. Hence, I have created this community for every woman out there. Feel free to be part of this amazing journey of motherhood and wellness. I will say raising this community is inspired by my experience and learning process. The main essence is to empower moms on the benefits of healthy living as well as the need to create a life work balance.
I am nice so a lot of people say and I believe I am very approachable even when there is a lot to be done. I love teaching. I can teach on a lot of things including time and stress management.