Cutting across gender and ethnicity, every parent dreams of a healthy child. Grooming a child into someone who hates junk food and loves a healthy lifestyle might be your concept of perfect parenting. But, if you think a strict approach with your kids is the best way to achieve that, you may be wrong. You don’t need to be a Tiger mom or a helicopter mom to raise a healthy child. There are a lot of things which you can do that don’t require too much effort. Well, here are a few of them for you.
Limit Screen Time
Most often when you are busy at work, or when you can’t take your kids out for outdoor activities, you let them spend time watching TV or using an iPad or playing video games. If you plan to limit their screen time, then you will face this obvious question from your kids, “What else are we supposed to do?” So before you restrict screen time, you should have other alternatives ready. Provide them with books, art work, board games or sports equipment. Interact with them. Set specific screen time and plan indoor/outdoor activities to keep them engaged.
Your kids crave for playtime with you. Get down on the floor with them. Pick up their toys and have fun. Be a part of their world. Participate in their pretend play. Do craft projects together. Make mud pies with them. Go for a nature walk. Begin a tradition of family game night, in earnest. Pick a night and arrange games that can be fun for the entire family. You sparing time out of your busy schedule for your kids will only make them feel special.
Make Nutrition Exciting
More junk foods and fewer vegetables are one of the main concerns for parents. Without embracing a fun approach, you cannot make your kids fall in love with healthy foods. Involve your kids in the kitchen. Well, that is easier said than done. When you struggle to finish your work in the kitchen, those little hands may not look like helping hands. But invest some patience and you could see the difference. At least let them watch you cook. Or shop for vegetables and fruits together. When they start enjoying the process or when they realize the hard work, they will enjoy yummy creations of their effort.
Let Them Rest
Think this one is easy? Not quite the case. Providing them with sound sleep can be equally challenging like getting them engaged. Without proper sleep, they will be drained out of their energy. Never-ending crankiness is a result of lack of rest. A quiet, dark room is a must for peaceful sleep. Ensure tech-free hours before their bedtime. Screen time before bedtime may tamper with their sleep.
Raising an emotionally healthy child is also very important. Do not insist on perfection in whatever they do. It may add unwanted pressure on them. Instead, focus on their efforts. To embrace success, appreciating their effort is vital. Relapses and failures are bound to happen in a kid’s life. Don’t overwhelm your kids with too many rules.
Eat Dinner Together
Yes, meals together matter a lot. Apart from bonding that happens over the dinner table, there are other things that a kid learns from a family dinner. It gives your kids an opportunity to learn about healthy eating. When they watch you eat nutritious food, they naturally tend to follow your lifestyle.
Be Healthy Yourself
Get things right at your end first. Without being healthy and happy, raising a healthy child is next to impossible. Your lifestyle and habits affect your kids. However smart your parenting is, if you are depressed and unhappy, all of that smartness will prove to be ineffective. Again, there is nothing like a perfect parent. Every parent is bound to slip up once in a while. How well you manage your mistakes and how you overcome them is what matters the most. That is how you can be a role model to your kids. Take good care of yourself and that is the first step you need to take to raise a healthy child.