Create Healthy Eating Habits that Actually Increase Your Children’s Self Esteem

February 14, 2008 at 10:14 am | Posted in children, dads, Diet / Nutrition, Families, Health, How To, moms, Mothers, parents, Self Esteem, siblings, teens, toddlers, Tweens | Leave a comment
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We are bombarded with messages everyday that imply we need to eat better, be more fit, and stay calm and happy.  And as a mom you have even more pressure on you.  You not only have to do this for yourself, but you have to do this for your family.  And you know at the moment it is a loosing battle. 

Or is it?  Is there a way to eat better, stay fit, and be calm and happy?  This is a pretty tall order.  I have three simple steps to begin teaching your family to have healthy eating habits.  What I am going to share with you is much more than habits actually.  They include how you think, how you act, and what you say.  These ideas will give you a new and lasting life style change for you and your children.

  • The first thing to understand is how your thinking can be detrimental to your family’s eating habits.  As parents it is our responsibility to be sure our children are eating well.  Yet there is so much out there that we know is junk, how can we separate the junk food from the healthy food? 
  • In your own thinking establish foods that you are comfortable with your kids eating.  With these foods in mind make a poster with your children that you can display in a prominent place in your kitchen. 

Here is a fun and interactive way to do this:

  • Have your children cut out as many pictures of food as they can find.  Have them put the pictures in two piles- Healthy foods and Not Healthy foods.  You will be surprised at what they come up with.  Some will be right on target and some will be way off.  After you have finished this part go through the pictures and talk about why each food is healthy or not.  A quick word or sentence is sufficient.  As you do this repile the pictures. 
  • Now get glue and poster board.  Glue all the healthy foods on the poster board.  Display in your kitchen. 
  • Explain to your children that these are foods that they can eat as much of as they want.  And point out the foods they love that are on the poster.
  • This gives everyone a concrete visual to help in healthy eating.  The visual will help your children think about healthy foods and you won’t need to be a nag. 
  • When your children ask if they can have something to eat, you can refer them to the poster.  This puts some responsibility on them.  If someone finds a new picture to add, by all means, add it on.

When you change the thinking dynamic to one of offering healthy foods that are not emotionally charged, you allow your children to maintain and develop intuitive eating habits.  You take pressure and stress of eating because everyone has the same poster and you made it together.

This also allows you to change your own inner negative recording that plays over and over in your mind.  You will no longer need to be depriving yourself you will be giving yourself the opportunity to create your own new message about food.

When you create a new message about food and eating that is simple, clear, and unattached to the past you will free your own self from negative self talk and thus increase you self esteem.

This is a starting point to create healthy eating habits and increase your family’s self esteem.

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