Food for children changes a lot during their first years of life. That’s why it is important that we think of every detail from the beginning. According to the WHO the percentage of obese children has multiplied by ten and a lot of it has to be with the changes in the eating habits of the parents, the hurry of the day to day life and different social aspects.
Obesity during the childhood isn’t a problem, but it is related to other risks like diabetes, cardiovascular and joint diseases, cancer and mental health problems. Helping our children to eat healthily and make sure they enjoy this habit is fundamental to their right development.
The market is full of food for children but... is it really healthy food? There are plenty of products with sugar levels or oils and refined flours beyond what’s recommended for children, or even for an adult. That’s why we shouldn’t trust this type of processed food before reading the tag.
As parents, our focus is to teach our children to eat in a healthy way, although this doesn’t mean, that the child diet has to be boring or insipid. On average, a child needs between 1.000 and 1.800 calories approximately depending on their age and physical activity. A varied contribution of nutrients that has proteins, carbohydrates, fruits, veggies, fats, and sugars.
Benefits of a healthy diet from an early age
Health and strong growth
The main benefit of our children having a healthy diet is their own health. A good diet will allow them to grow strong and that’s key for a good development of bones and muscles, food with high levels of proteins and calcium will help them so these developed during their growth.
Development of the brain
The organs of kids, especially when they are little, are not fully formed and that’s why they need a healthy and well-balanced diet to help their organs develop correctly. The brain is an organ that is directly affected by the food they eat. According to studies, the lack of iodine or iron delays the cognitive development. Fatty oils are also good to make better their learning and the efficiency of the children.
Diet affects directly in the appearance and development of diseases. Childhood obesity has increased in the last years, and that’s mainly because of the bad food management and the lack of care when it comes down to teach healthy eating habits. Taking care of the amount of sugar or processed food will help your children to reduce the possibilities of having diseases like diabetes or heart problems that may follow our children until they are adults.
Improving School performance
Diet is very important for our children to succeed in school. Having the right breakfast
and maintaining a well-balanced diet will help them to improve their performance at school and also improve their concentration and learning process. A healthy diet will give them all the needed energy to their brain and body to be productive during their day and achieve the results at school and out of school activities.
These are just some of the benefits that a healthy diet gives our children. Their diet is important, because it doesn’t just affect their physical appearance, but every part of their health. Eating healthy from an early age gives them benefits not only in their childhood but for adults.
We are social beings and we learn customs since our first day of life. If we teach our children to maintain a healthy diet, healthy habits and the capacity to enjoy all of it, it will be the base where they will work with the rest of their life. Making them part of the weekly meals, teaching them to cook their favorite food in a healthy way, changing the way to cook veggies, fish, meat, fruit... explaining to them what these will give to their body and growth, cultivate your own fruits and veggies or practice sports in family, will for sure help them to maintain their taste for healthy, natural and well balanced food.
It is inevitable, that a child asks for sweets, chocolates, hamburgers, nuggets, sausages, sauces... and although it is not recommended including them in your everyday diet, we can make some exceptions in special occasions. Always trying to explain to them why is not good to eat them in excess and the reasons why these are not the best for their development.