Healthy habits and a strong foundation for growth are one of the key benefits that the family structure can provide a child as they grow and develop habits that will stay with them throughout their lives. As children are not likely to change their eating or activity habits on their own, it is up to the parents to make it as easy as possible for their child to lead a healthy and active life (NIH News in Health). Childhood obesity is an epidemic in the United States, as 1 in 3 children are overweight or obese. Parents can set the stage for change in the house by encouraging healthy exercise habits and a healthy relationship with food and portions.
Limiting television and electronics used in the home while also making items like balls, hula hoops, and other items more prevalent in the home. Instead of watching shows and playing video games, encouraging kids and joining them, entertaining themselves through physical activity can build positive habits that will stay with them long term. The relationship between food and portion control is another area of family health that parental actions can have a massive impact on a child’s lifelong relationship with food. We are constantly told that opting for healthier foods at home is the best way to go, but it isn’t always the easiest. However, there are plenty of resources available that can give parents plenty of quick-assembly meals using healthier foods rather than opting for the easier though unhealthy alternatives. Portion control is another big, often overlooked piece to a healthy relationship with food. Children under three tend to stop eating on their own when they’re full. “But after age three,” Lumeng says, “the more you put on their plate, the more they’ll eat.” So, make sure to give your kids child-size portions (NIH News in Health). Teaching children to eat slower and understand when they are full can lay a foundation for healthier eating choices as they age. Setting the table at home for your family’s long-term health will have a long-lasting and positive impact on you and your children as you age.
About the Author:
Davis has been involved in sports and fitness from a very early age. He traveled the country competing in baseball tournaments before attending Cal Poly, earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication, and being a Debate team member. Davis received his personal training certification during the pandemic; his motivation came from wanting to help improve his friends and family’s health and fitness. He loves to have fun and brings that energy into the gym each and every day. In his spare time, Davis enjoys spending time with friends and family and playing basketball, baseball, or whatever sport is in season.
Special Skills, Certifications, and Affiliations:
- Bachelor of Communication, Cal Poly
- CPR/AED Certification
- Personal Training Certification; NASM
- NFHS Coaching Certification
- Formerly 7th ranked cornhole player in the American Cornhole Organization of California
National Institutes of Health, part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
American Psychological Association. (2011, November 1). Healthy habits for healthy families. https://www.apa.org/topics/families/healthy-habits
Photo by Askar Abayev: https://www.pexels.com/photo/family-gathering-at-festive-table-5638732/