All parents know how challenging it can be to help kids lead a healthy lifestyle. Whether it’s sugary drinks, salty snacks, or the allure of streaming their favorite shows anytime, kids have plenty of things that can keep them from leading a healthy, active lifestyle. That’s why we’ve put together seven easy things you can do to encourage your kids to live healthier.
- Make Sure They Drink Lots of Water
The National Academies recommend kids consume between 1 & 1.2 liters of water per day. Though some of that daily recommended water comes through the food kids eat, about 80% of it comes from what they drink. Drinking plain water is a great way to limit kids’ calories (as opposed to drinking soda & juice) while also helping them stay hydrated and healthy. This change is so easy, your kids might not even notice.
- Enjoy a Family Dinner Everyday
We all know that work, school, sports, music lessons, and other activities can quickly consume all your free time. Setting aside time every day for a family dinner is a great way to make sure your kids are eating a healthy meal while also socializing, building family bonds, and teaching them about nutrition. It’s also a great way to try out new foods and teach your kids how to cook for themselves!
- Add Some Color to Everything They Eat
According to Harvard Medical School, one of the easiest ways to improve your kids’ diet is by adding a little color to it. You can even turn this healthy eating habit into a fun activity with the Cook ‘n Learn Smart Kitchen. Have your kids find all the fruits of one color, make a rainbow fruit salad, or even sort them into the different categories of the food pyramid. Adding color is a fun way to inject extra nutrition into what your kids eat.
- Find a Physical Activity They Enjoy
Kids can be boundless fountains of energy, and finding the right activities to funnel that energy into can be challenging. Try exposing your kids to a wide variety of physical activities and sports (like the Totsports Easy Score Basketball Set, the Easy Store 3 Foot Trampoline, or the Totsports Easy Hit Golf Set) and see what sticks. Finding the right activity for kids can take some time, but the benefits of a healthy lifestyle are worth the effort.
- Make Sure They Eat a Good Breakfast
Science shows that breakfast really is the most important meal of the day. Getting healthy calories first thing in the morning is a great way to kickstart kids’ brains, bodies, and metabolisms. Eating a healthy breakfast has also been linked to weight loss, and tons of other benefits for kids. Have your kids pick out their favorite breakfast foods with the Shop ‘n Learn Smart Breakfast. Kickstart your kids day with a healthy breakfast and watch as they reap the benefits all day long.
- Limit Screen Time to One Hour a Day
Technology can be wonderful, it puts the world at our fingertips, but like most things it’s best in moderation. The common adage that we should limit screen time to one hour a day does present the challenge of how to fill kids’ free time. Pretend play toys like the Shop ‘n Learn Smart Checkout provide hours of fun with limited screen time. The Smart Checkout can be played with a tablet to enhance the toy’s features or try it without and let your child put his imagination to work Fun, imaginative pretend play toys are a great way to help your kids develop their imaginations, problem solving, and social skills. Get your kids up and active and watch as their health improves too!
- Develop Their Brains by Encouraging them to Read
In addition to being fun, reading has been proven to improve kids critical thinking, social, and writing skills. It’s also a great quiet-time activity for when kids need to unwind at the end the day. Whatever your kids interests are, you can help them lead a healthier lifestyle through reading.
For more great toys to help your kids lead a healthier lifestyle, check out all these great Little Tikes toys.