(Family Features)–As a parent, instilling healthy eating habits in your children at an early age can aid in proper growth and development. Eating well goes a long way toward maintaining a healthy weight, increasing energy levels and improving moods while also reducing the risk of obesity and other chronic issues such as heart disease and diabetes later in life.
Set your children on a path to making lifelong nutritious choices with these tips:
Foster independence. Allowing your children to help with shopping and meal prep can aid in them taking ownership of what they’re eating. Start by divvying up easier tasks, such as setting the table then work toward creating snacks and meals on their own.
Offer balanced options. Children require balanced diets made up of all three major food groups, including fruits and vegetables, for proper development.
Be a role model. Typically, your children will follow your behaviors, which includes the types of foods they select at mealtimes. Eating a rainbow of fruits and vegetables can help ensure your family is getting a complete range of nutrients. Thinking about how many colors you eat in a day may inspire your kids to do the same, which can foster a lifetime of healthy eating habits.
Source: Produce for Kids