Parents lead busy lives. Between work and children’s ever-busier schedules and needs, there is little time left to consider if their current lifestyles are healthy, let alone how to make them healthier. One thing to remember is that parents pass habits on to their children, just as they do genes. Fortunately, a few simple guidelines will assist busy parents in leading more mindful, healthier lives.
Plan and Budget
Your kids don’t need to know all the aspects of the budget and should not be burdened by the stress of strained household finances. But they should see you taking budgeting seriously and taking the time to make sure things are functioning smoothly for financial health. One aspect is budgeting in life insurance against future mishap, and couples health insurance is an answer to that potential worry.
Make Eating Colorful
Planning to eat foods of various colours isn’t only fun; it has benefits for the health of both parents and children as well. You can help your children in understanding the nutritional value of the inclusion of a rainbow of foods in their meals as part of a regular diet. Not every meal needs to be multicoloured, of course. But an effort should be made to incorporate a wide range into your family’s diet.
Do Not Skip Breakfast
Instilling a regular mealtime routine in childhood can help give children a foundation of a good habit that they will continue building on when they are older. Teach your kids that a healthy breakfast helps in keeping them strong, will kickstart their energy and brain, and helps keep chronic diseases away.
Choose Enjoyable Physical Activities
Not all kids love sports; some dread gym class and others simply tolerate being active. But if your children see you enjoying being active, it can help them work together with you to find activities they do enjoy. When physical activities are fun, staying active and healthy becomes easy. This enjoyment of these activities can quite likely be carried into adulthood.
Find Time for Friends
Finally, an example of making time for friends is a good one to set, even in hectic schedules. School-aged children need friendships for their healthy development. They learn valuable social skills and can do better in school. Encouraging your kids to develop a variety of friendships and to spend time cultivating those friendships will help build life skills.
Get Off the Couch
The kids who watch television for more than an hour or two each day are at a greater risk for numerous health problems. These include impaired school performance, behavioural difficulties which include emotional and social problems, obesity, less playtime, and irregular sleep.
Reading helps keep the mind active and healthy; the development of strong reading abilities is an essential part of success in school and work. The reading will help in building a child’s self-esteem, improve relationships with parents and others, and aid in success later in life. Work reading into playtime and bedtime routines.
Hydrate with Water
The message here is simple. Water is healthy and refreshing. Soft drinks are unhealthy. Even if kids are too young to grasp all the consequences of sugar, the basics are simple enough to understand.
The important labels to look at are not the designer ones on clothing, but rather the labels on food. These food nutrition labels can be overwhelming with the amount of information they present. Have kids focus on calories, grams of sugar, and trans fats and saturated fats. Both you and they should note that this information is per serving.
Image Credits: Jakub Kapusnak