Healthy eating is hard enough as an adult, but being a parent trying to get your child to eat healthy is a whole different story. Most kids want the sweets and chocolates in their lunch boxes, not fruit and granola bars. Not to mention if you have managed to convince your child that eating healthy is a good thing, there’s still the price obstacle to tackle. It’s a mystery why healthy eating is so much more expensive then junk food, but there is a solution to every problem. There are coupons that may bring the high price of healthy snacks down to a normal “junk food” level, and sometimes if you manage to find a sale as well, you can lower the price even more. For example, there are many special offers waiting for you at Target. In the end, let’s face it – children are very expensive, but their health is not something to scrimp on.
Now that we’ve tackled saving money, lets tackle the hardest part, which is your child wanting to eat healthy snacks. Our children mimic what they see around them, and if they observe you eating junk food all day they will learn to think it's a great snack. Try limiting your consumption of junk food to a minimum or not at all with your kids.
Another way to convince your children is to make eye catching fun snacks. Something as simple as building a smiley face with fruit or yoghurt can help your kid to see that eating healthy is fun. Lots of colours and variety is essential, especially if they brown bag their lunches to school. Putting lots of colour and adventure in your child lunch bag can help them not be so nervous and give in to the lunch time trading phenomenon.
Getting creative is a huge part in helping our child to choose healthier options, especially if they have a hand in making their own snacks. For example, have them help you make trail mix at home with a variety of fruits and nuts. They can add as little or as much of each ingredient as they want, since they're all healthy.
If all else fails, you can always trick them into eating healthy and tell them the truth later. For example, instead of buying brownies at the store, try making your own brownies at home with healthier recipes. Substitute the sugar and chocolate for fibre and protein (such as nuts). Or instead of ice cream for dessert, try yoghurt – it's just as sweet, but has natural sugars and fruit, not artificial flavourings!
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