Children are always attracted to food; especially fast food. Might be because of the unavoidable sensual appearance, fast foods are huge hit among children. However, for parents who care about the health of their children there is a bad news. Eating too much of fast food would lead to health problems including obesity. Within a year of high fast food consumption, a child’s weight might get added up by 6 pounds. Not good! Eh?
We can not blame the children anyway. According to scientists, the high salt, fat and sugar content in fast foods appeal to the ‘primordial’ taste buds of children. They will always be attracted to it. So it becomes the parents responsibility to keep the children away from the fast foods, which is of course not a happy experience. But there are solutions for every problem; how about tasty and healthy food instead of colorful junky fast foods? Children are adamant about their preferences and most of the times parents fall for the kid’s preference.
As we all know, it is the calories that are included in the fast food matters. Most of the fat that our children consume goes unburnt and gets deposited in the body as fat. This is what leads to obesity. Here are certain tips that might help you when it comes to your kid and fast food.
1. Cook at home
Cook more at home. It is an easy and healthy option both for your body, your pocket and your child for sure. Preparing food at home gives you more options than any other restaurant. And if your child is with you while cooking, tell him about the good and the bad in foods. Cook healthy and tasty meals for your children.
2. Broaden the taste buds
Parents tend to prepare kid’s food when they are at home and order special food for kids when they eat out. Here is the major mistake. We are limiting the food choices for our children. It is always better to introduce your child to the world of different healthy foods as early as possible. Never order a separate cheeseburger for the kid if you are eating grilled chicken breast and carrots. Let him also eat foods that you order. This can be practiced at home. While there are special food needs for children, it is not that foods that adults eat are harmful to them. Most of the healthy foods that we have are good for our kids too.
3. Look before you leap
It is good that you like to take your child out to eat at times. Do not fall for the kid’s adamant nature and go to fancy fast food centers that give you more calories than actually required by the child. Stick to restaurants and food outlets that are health conscious. Subway is an excellent example for restaurant that serves healthy food. Whenever you go out with family give importance to restaurants that give equal importance to health as taste.
3. Be the food guide
You have to be the food guide of your child. Make the child understand that some of the fast food items are only to be had occasionally and not every day or every time you go out. Nowadays, there are many restaurants and food outlets that give you an option to select the food. Burgers without too much of cheese and additional healthy veggies are part of children’s menu in many food outlets. So be with your child, tell him what is good, what is bad. And yes, be smart when you choose food.
4. Be the Model
Most of the children imitate their parents not only in actions but also in habits. They look at you and learn. So be conscious. Think of your child before you order a double cheese burger for you and chicken nuggets for your child. So make healthy choices while you eat with children.
It is also important that there are many other factors that lead to the children’s fast food addiction. They might have opportunities to have fast food without your knowledge. There are advertisements of fast foods that make children crave for them. In such cases you would not be able to do much. Mingle your child and fast food as rarely as possible, as healthy as possible!