Parents have the responsibility to provide a healthy environment for their children.
But what is involved in a healthy environment?
- A clean house with a safe sleeping arrangement
- Providing for good hygiene
- Emotional support and teaching coping skills
- A sense of family connections
- Add your own, this list can be very long!
Our health is holistic in nature. Without good sleep, you will not cope well with the anxieties of life. Without good food, you will not grow and develop properly. One part affects another, which will affect their health today and into the future.
Little changes make a big impact over time
Little changes you make have a ripple effect over time. If you switch from whole milk to 1% milk, you save 45 calories per glass OR 135 calories in 3 glasses each day. This is 945 calories per week, which equals 14 pounds in a year.
One hundred calories saved each day equals 10 pounds lost in a year. When you buy reduced fat milk, you change your environment at home. Small changes like buying lower fat foods can make a big difference over time. Your children are dependent on what you provide, so it’s up to you to make these little changes.
- When you buy healthier breakfast cereal, they will eat it
- Or switch to whole grain toast
- When you buy cookies with less sugar, they will eat them
- When you buy low-fat chips, they will eat them
- If you buy apples, with a little prep, they will eat them too!
Cut out 100 calories and reduce sugar
Remember, 100 extra calories each day will cause you to gain 10 pounds each year. Considering how small the 100 calorie snack packs are, you can see how it is easy to eat too many calories each day. That’s why most Americans are gaining weight every year.
It is easier to avoid the temptations in the grocery store than it is to resist eating it every day once you bring it home. This should be a whole family affair. Don’t buy something for your mate and expect your children to resist eating it. It is unrealistic to expect your children to resist eating something you have in the house.
Changing to a lower sugar diet may be challenging to the whole family. But to provide a healthy future, it is important for you to control the amount of sugar in your children’s daily diet. Work with your children to find acceptable solutions. Help them make good decisions about the foods you provide in your home.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently changed its recommendations for daily exercise. Never before have they recommended 2-year-olds get added activities. The CDC realizes that parents need to encourage children at a young age to “move their way”. Dancing is a good example. Put music on and it is natural for kids to dance. Find things your children like to do.
Included in the CDC’s recommendations is a limit on screen time based on age. Screen time includes television and computer games. Parents need to be aware of what their children are doing. Encourage them to get involved in activities.
Be the architect of your home
Children depend on parents to provide a good home environment. By keeping focused on their future, you will be motivated to do the right things.
For more information about the holistic nature of children’s health, download my free ebook. 👉 But before you download that, please make sure you’ve signed up for my email list! Anytime I put out a freebie, you’ll get a copy just for being on my list!
For more information about raising healthy children, please see my program, Kids at Risk for Diabetes.