In today’s world, it has become more important than ever to help kids develop healthy eating habits. As parents, it is important to use caution while deciding what foods to feed our children. While many foods can support their development and wellbeing, some should be avoided in order to protect their long-term health and growth. Children can gain a clearer understanding of good eating habits and their effect on general wellness if these ideas are presented to them at a young age. A balanced diet that includes a wide range of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and dairy products can build the foundation of healthier eating habits. Dr Swathi Ramamurthy, Head R&D, Herby Angel explains what foods to cut from your kid’s diet:
- Sugary Snacks and Sweets
Feeding kids with lots of sugary foods is a strict no, and must be avoided at all costs. Sugary foods, treats, and drinks can cause tooth decay, weight gain, and increase the risk for type 2 diabetes. When craving something sweet, you can go ahead for healthier options like whole-grain snacks, fresh fruit, or yogurt.
- Processed Foods
Preservatives, artificial additives, excessive sodium, and harmful fats are all commonly found in highly processed foods. These foods are deficient in important nutrients and may become a cause of obesity, cardiac difficulties, and other health concerns. Choose healthy, minimally processed foods like whole grains, lean proteins, and fresh veggies instead, to provide your child the nutrients they need to flourish.
- Sugary Breakfast Cereals
A lot of commercial breakfast cereals targeted to kids are laden with extra sugar and artificial flavors. These cereals can result in sharp blood sugar spikes and drops, which can induce energy slumps and may negatively affect concentration levels. Opt for whole-grain cereals with little to no added sugar, or make a filling breakfast with oats, fruit, and nuts.
- Fried Foods
Fried foods are typically rich in calories and harmful trans fats. Regular intake of these can increase the risk of heart disease, obesity, and other health issues in your child. Instead, bake or grill food to preserve its nutritious content and cut back on harmful saturated fat intake.
- Soda and Drinks
Beverages such as soda, fruit juices, and flavored drinks have no nutritional value and are high in empty calories. To improve the hydration in kids and reduce their intake of sugar, encourage them to drink water, milk, or naturally flavored water.
- Artificially Colored and Flavored Snacks
Snacks with artificial flavors and colors may be visually enticing to kids, but they generally are low in nutritional value and can often cause hyperactivity and behavioral problems. As a healthier alternative to this, pick home cooked whole-food snacks like carrot sticks, apple slices, and natural yogurt.
As parents, do not miss out on inculcating good dietary habits in your children from the very beginning for it will benefit them all their lives. You can make sure that your kids get all the nutrients they need for healthy growth and development and reduce the health issues by avoiding sugary snacks, processed, fried foods, sugary drinks, and other fast foods. By choosing complete, wholesome foods, you can improve your child’s overall health and give them the best start in life. It’s important to keep in mind that even the smallest change towards healthy eating can have a big effect on your child’s health in the long run.