Raising Healthy Children!

We are what we eat and from an early age it is important to learn good eating habits. This month, Ghada Salem talks about how to teach our kids to have a healthy lifestyle. 

Raising a healthy child is one of the daily challenges mums face. It is not only about what kind of food you give to your child. It is more about how to get them to adopt a healthy lifestyle and understand how their body works. Educating children about what “being healthy” means is the first step to raising a healthy child.

A healthy child does not mean only eating healthy food, but also having a healthy lifestyle. Therefore, a child should be practising at least one sport three or four times a week, have limited screen time and enough sleep on a daily basis.
Below some simple ideas to educate your child on why they need to be healthy:

Eat in colours!
For kids to develop healthy habits, it’s important for them to learn to love a variety of fruits and vegetables. They also have to learn to eat food prepared in different ways. This can be done by getting them to help in cooking their meals, explain what vegetables and fruits do for their bodies. You can say that vegetables and fruits build your fighter team to beat enemies such as bacterial conditions and diseases like flu! So the more you eat vegetables and fruits, the stronger your army is. They also need to learn that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. They need to fuel their army’s tanks and engines in the morning by eating a healthy breakfast. You can prepare scrambled egg with veggies, a smoothie of fresh fruits and almond milk, hummus with carrots, etc.

It might also help to have a weekly meal plan designed by you and your children, you can write it down together. You can draw or print out the vegetables and fruits included in the weekly meals for them to colour or ask the little ones to suggest their favourite meals and have their names written next to them.

Stay fit
Practice a sport or at least get your child to ride his or her bicycle once a day. Being active makes them smarter. You can explain to them that when you exercise more blood goes to your heart which is the engine of your body.
The increased blood flow also benefits your brain, allowing it to almost immediately function better. As a result, you tend to feel more focused.

After Sunset!
With the rapid growth of kids’ access to technology it has become part of most of mums’ lives to
have children using Ipads or tablets. However, the usage of these devices should be limited as many studies show that they limit the child’s imagination. Technology, like everything else, has its good and bad side. A moderate usage will guarantee you get the good and eliminate the bad impact as much as you can. Try to train your kids that no devices
are allowed after sunset. The minute the sun sets a child should be cooling down to get ready for bedtime and a good sleep.

Good apps for kids:

Aged 6+
IXL: for maths and English language.
Raz-Kids: interactive eBooks for children.
Toontastic: your child can create their own animation-based films.
Toca Kitchen 2: give your kids control of the kitchen with a no rules, stress-free environment, kids get to decide what’s for dinner.

Age 4+
Edu kitchen: for children who love to play in the kitchen.
Edu kidzroom: logic learning educational games for toddlers and pre-schoolers.
Agnitus: the free edition teaches them basics like colours, shapes and numbers.
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