Don't wait until your child is at an unhealthy weight to institute good eating and activity habits. It's much easier to maintain a healthy weight than to lose pounds later.
Make it usual for the family to be active, not sedentary. Being active as a family allows kids to expend energy in a positive way, and adults get the health benefits, too.
It may not be possible to do it every day, but invite kids into the process of preparing food. Little kids can learn math skills by measuring and they'll begin to understand the chemistry of cooking. They'll also gain an understanding of healthy ingredients.
Eating a meal as a family sends the right messages about nutrition. Kids will see their parents eating healthy food and may want to try new foods. They'll also see mealtime as a time for socializing and sharing. Parents get a chance to offer nutritious food, note their kids' likes and dislikes, and talk about daily triumphs and troubles.
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