They run, jump, bounce, ride, dash, tumble, and play. My three boys are a non-stop whirl of motion. These days, play is disappearing at home, in school and in communities. It’s strange to think that while 70% of moms played outside when we were kids, only 31% of our kids play outside today.
My boys are definitely in that 31%- they’ve already got the active part down when it comes to healthy habits. They like to get out there and play. But they sometimes need a little bit of help when it comes to developing other healthy habits, like what they eat. I want to keep them energized with nutritious foods. I’ve learned a few things about getting my kids to eat healthy.
They can only eat what you have. If I stock up on the good stuff, when my kids are hungry, they check out what we have. If the options are all healthy, then that’s what they eat. To suit their tastes, I still need to have a variety, but I can find snacks that each of them would like and that I can feel good about feeding them.
Let them have a say in what foods they want. If they like certain foods over others and yet are still making healthy choices, there’s no reason to fight that. I like to take my kids to the Farmer’s Market so they can pick out fruits and vegetables. Usually, they can sample some of the fruits and we get to shop local and get the freshest produce.
Keep it simple. You can find all sorts of recipes for dressing up fruits and vegetables. Those definitely have their place. But if my kids will gobble up the peaches we got from the Farmer’s Market as is, I see no reason to do anything more than wash them and hand them over.
Hide the goodness. This is the exact opposite of what I just said, but when there are foods you know your kids won’t eat as is or even cooked into a recipe if they can see them, you can hide the goodness. I have a Romesco sauce I make with jalapenos, bell peppers, shallots, and tomatoes that all of my kids will eat because I pulverize them in my blender and my kids are none the wiser. And hiding greens in smoothies is practically a parenting rite of passage.
Stock up on nutritious snacks for on-the-go. This can easily be our downfall. We’re running from place to place for our kids’ activities and there’s a drive-thru sign calling out, tempting me to feed the kids there. But if my bag already has nutritious snacks in it, I won’t give in to the drive-thru and instead, I can feel good about the snacks I’m feeding my kids.
My kids tried CLIF Kid® Zbars recently and now they ask for those every time I go grocery shopping. They especially like the Iced Oatmeal Cookie flavor, though the Chocolate Chip runs a close second.
I can feel good about giving my kids CLIF Kid Zbars because they are made with organic ingredients, are non-GMO, have no high fructose corn syrup or artificial flavors, and have important nutrients for active kids. CLIF Kid Zbars are an appropriate portion size for kids, so they can have their snack and then get right back out there and play.
CLIF Kid encourages kids to do just that- come out to play. Watch the CLIF Kid video and remember what it was like when we played ’til the streetlights came on.
What do you do to help develop healthy habits with your kids?
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.