Make Healthy Choices Easy

by Cheryl Tallman and Joan Ahlers

The best way to encourage your child to successfully make healthy food choices is to have plenty of them available and to avoid or limit the number of unhealthy food choices in your home.

Here are some tips:

  1. Serve and offer water all of the time.

  2. Keep fruits and veggies on hand and ready to eat. Some ideas are carrot and celery sticks, snap peas, green beans, red pepper sticks, melon and pineapple chunks, bananas, apples, peaches. The list is endless.

  3. Have an assortment of good snacks available, such as yogurt, applesauce, peanut butter and celery, dried fruit, nuts, seeds, rice cakes, whole-grain crackers and cheese.

  4. Select lean meats and low-fat proteins, such eggs, nuts, tofu and beans. Avoid deep-fried foods. Healthier cooking methods include broiling, grilling, roasting and steaming.

  5. Limit the amount of processed food you cook. As a general rule, buy products that have common ingredients found in your kitchen, not the chemistry lab.

  6. Limit fast food and other low-nutrient snacks, such as chips and candy. You may decide to not ban them from your home. Instead, you can make them "once-in-a-while" foods.

  7. Don't keep soda or sugary drinks in your house, and limit the amount of 100% real fruit juice your kids drink.

Cheryl Tallman and Joan Ahlers are sisters, the mothers of five children and founders of Fresh Baby, creators of products such as homemade baby food kits, baby food cookbooks, baby food and breast milk storage trays, breastfeeding reminders, and child development diaries.

Copyright © Cheryl Tallman and Joan Ahlers. Permission to republish granted to Pregnancy.org, LLC.