Raising healthy children can be harder than it seems. Sometimes I turn to the internet for resources and tips on maintaining a healthy family lifestyle. I found there are companies such as Molina Healthcare that offer information on nutrition, wellness exams and staying healthy.
Believe me, I know that there are a slew of temptations out there, especially when it comes to food! But we are our child’s advocates and their life coaches. If we lead they will follow! So as a parent there are plenty of things that I can do to make sure that my daughter is on a healthy track. I try to practice moderation and sometimes I give into temptation by having that amazing dessert knowing it should be more of a reward than an every day habit.
I’m not an expert but here are some steps on how my husband and I try to achieve a happy and healthy lifestyle for our daughter:
1) I realize that this is a hot topic for many families but we chose to immunize our daughter. They help her from getting sick and ultimately could save her life. These diseases that we are protecting our kids from might not be as common but the bacteria is still out there. I keep her up to date on her shots and keep her records on hand. Immunization is a personal decision that families make and something they should discuss with their pediatrician.
2) Food has always been our biggest challenge. I’m all for a delicious sweet treat from time to time but eating healthy is beneficial for the entire family. If you maintain a healthy diet then your kids will too! Keep fresh fruits on hand, cut up veggies and leave them out for your kids to grab. We even take trips to the farmers markets and let our daughter select our healthy (and locally grown) foods to bring home to snack on throughout the day and even over the next few days. She enjoys learning our food from the market was picked fresh that day and driven right to the market instead of sitting in a warehouse somewhere. Buying locally grown and organic foods can be more expensive but I think that if people cut out the junk food and trips to restaurants they would see that they could afford healthier options.
3) Regular exercise helps your body and your mind! Physical activity helps maintain your body weight and may prevent you from developing diseases such as heart disease and diabetes. In this day and age, kids are inundated with technology and it’s easy to set them up with an iPad or video game but we have to stress the importance of exercise. Whether it’s an organized sport, family walks, exercise improves moods, quality of sleep and helps to lose weight. It’s sad that we’re in an obesity epidemic but parents can instill healthy lifestyles to avoid overweight children.
4) Speaking of technology, don’t spend more time on your phone than you do with your children. I’m a blogger, I spend a lot of time on social media channels but I make sure to disconnect. No phones during dinner, bedtime, etc. I have even left my phone at home or in the car when I’m out with my daughter. Let them see your face and not the back of your head. Be in the moment with your kids!
4) Don’t smoke! Can you believe some parents still smoke around their children. I know it’s a hard habit to break, believe me, I grew up with a father who smoked 2 cartons of cigarettes a week but he managed to quit cold turkey. Kids are still developing so why expose them to poison! It’s GROSS AND EXTREMELY UNHEALTHY. I grew up around this and do not want to put my child at risk.
5) Emotional health is also another important factor on raising a well balanced child. Kids shouldn’t carry our stress and fighting in front of them effects them more than we think. Unresolved fighting can impact our kids but kids need to know that parents do disagree but try to look for ways to work it out. Don’t ask your kids to take sides and let them know that your disagreements aren’t their fault. Communication will help deal with disagreements and coping skills when they are faced with a challenge.
6) Kids thrive on a routine. Help develop a good night time routine, organize a quiet spot for homework and don’t overdo it with extra curricular stuff. My daughter is really tired after a long day of second grade so we try to keep the car ride home quiet and then I ask her questions throughout the evening about her day.
7) Confident parents = confident kids. I want to show my daughter that I am a confident and independent woman. I don’t want her to grow up with limits and inheriting my insecurities. My mom moved to the States with me when I was 5 years old. She was brave, loved to laugh and was always taking her kids on a good adventure even when my dad wasn’t available to go. I remember those moments and maybe that’s why I’m always on the go with my daughter. I love hitting the road and exploring with her. Our world is too big to limit ourselves to trips to the toy store. Be creative! Believe me your kids will value those moments more than the toys you buy them.
8) Be happy and have fun! Spend time together as a family. Talk, eat, read, play together and most importantly let your kids be kids. I’ve learned that time goes by in a blink of an eye. Our kids deserve to have happy memories of their childhood and pass on their experiences with their children.
Raising children is not easy and we’ve all made mistakes but know that there are resources and professionals out there if you need some help. I’m learning every day on how to be a better person and how to effectively talk with consistency, honesty and love! Our children’s future is worth the effort. =)
* This is a sponsored post but this blog is in our own words and is our opinion. Your results and opinions may differ.