Healthy Habit 5: Choose not to micromanage your child's eating.
As a parent, you don't want to be watching every bite of food that goes into your kid's mouth. You don't want to be swatting her hand away from the cookie jar all the time. That sort of micromanaging will just make everyone miserable.
Instead, the easiest path to raising a healthy family is to remove the source of conflict. Replace the cookie jar with a fruit bowl. After all, kids do most of their eating at home -- that's true even for many teens. Because parents are the ones who shop, you have control over the food that's in the house.
When you're at the grocery store, swap the chips and cookies you normally put in your cart with healthier options, like whole-grain versions or treats with less fat and sugar. Don't buy sugary drinks such as soda and juice-like drinks, and limit the amount of 100% fruit juice you buy.
Buy only foods that you want your child to eat. It will boost your family's health, and you won't worry so much about which food she's choosing for a snack.
Healthy Habit 6: Choose healthy ways to manage stress.
Some studies have shown that kids with stressed-out moms are more likely to be overweight. The cause of the stress can be anything from health problems in the family, money issues, or problems with their mate.
So, here's another reason to enlist help to find solutions to your stressors -- to help keep your kid's weight in a healthy range. Try these healthy stress relievers:
- Talk it out with a friend, counselor, or religious advisor.
- Use exercise as a way to burn off stress.
- Tell your kids about your stress, using words they can understand.
- Look for support to help you with the things causing you distress from family, government programs, hospital classes, and so forth.
By handling stress in healthy ways, you set a great example for your kids, too.