Raising Healthy Kids: Top 10 Expert Family Fitness Tips
Childhood obesity has more than doubled in children and quadrupled in adolescents in the past 30 years. And according to the CDC, Children and adolescents who are obese are likely to be obese as adults and are therefore more at risk for adult health problems such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke, and several types of cancer.
Healthy Kids: It Starts At Home
So how to combat the fast food marketing, the empty calories in junk food, and the high-sugarcontent of the food in our grocery stores? For help, we asked Dr. John Mayer, clinical psychologist and author of FAMILY FIT: Find Your Balance in Life. He gave us these 10 tips for raising healthy kids and living as a healthy family.
Top 10 Tips for Healthy Families:
1. Show Don’t Tell.
Parents need to model the healthy lifestyle that they want their kids to follow.
2. A healthy lifestyle should be FUN.
If family members of any age are participating grudgingly, you are doing it wrong.
3. Healthy eating should be FUN.
I often say, “Play with your Food!” By that I mean make food fun, exciting, good tasting.
4. Don’t think of a healthy diet as limiting.
When it comes to foods, don’t deny yourself, instead substitute unhealthy ingredients with healthy ones.
5. Move more as a family.
Include physical activity as a part of your family’s EVERYDAY routine.
6. Incorporate family fitness.
Incorporate movement, but also fun fitness into the whole family’s daily activity.
7. Look after the health of your young ones AND older ones.
Include all family members in your daily physical activity. All family members, even grandma and grandpa.
8. Don’t give up on kids as they get older.
Parents give up on engaging teens because they are using all the same activities they employed when the kids were much younger. The key is to evolve with your children.
9. Do all kinds of fun things with your family.
Go to movies, read books, participate in the arts, do sports, travel, play video games, whatever.
10. Start all of the above early in the child’s life.
Human’s are creatures of habit and if a child grows up in a world that has a healthy lifestyle they will naturally be involved.