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Healthy Eating for Children - Changing Your Family's Eating Habits

Encourage healthy choices

Help your child learn to make healthy food and lifestyle choices by following these steps:

  • Be a good role model. Practice the eating and exercise habits you'd like your children to have. Your example is your child's most powerful learning tool.
  • Increase active time. Make physical activity a part of your family's daily life. Set limits on your child's daily TV and computer time to no more than 2 hours a day. Have your child take breaks from computer, cell phone, and TV use and be active instead. It's best for children younger than 2 to not watch TV, watch movies, or play games on a screen.
  • Eat breakfast. Having breakfast with your child can help start a lifelong healthy habit.
  • Involve your child in meal planning and grocery shopping. When your child is old enough, teach him or her about food preparation, cooking and food safety and, later, how to use food label information camera.gif. While giving your child a role in decision making, remember that you have the final say in food planning.
  • Involve your child in cooking. Children enjoy helping out, and they learn easily with hands-on experience. They can also use other skills, such as math, when counting or measuring ingredients.
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WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: January 27, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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