Proper nutrition and exercise are key to keeping energy levels up and the whole family healthy and happy. But between work, doctor’s appointments, play dates and the everyday hustle for busy families, it’s not always easy to stick to a well-balanced diet and make time for fitness. Here are a few ideas to make it happen.
By Liz Carino
Enjoying a healthy diet and physical activity is worth the effort — it can help prevent chronic diseases including heart disease, cancer, stroke and diabetes, as well as keep obesity at bay and improve sleep, to name just a few benefits.
I asked the team at KABRITA how they encourage healthy eating and exercise in their households every day. Try these four great ideas for the whole family.
Weave it into daily life
We just make it a part of every day life, including driving as little as possible which promotes more walking and outdoor time. The kids eat healthy food because that’s what we serve and have in the house. We’re lucky to live within walking distance to food markets, so we always keep fresh food on hand . This makes it easy to eat well at home.
– Simona Irwin, Sales Manager
I still use the car for big grocery shops and errands further afield, but I find taking Jack on mini-errands to our local grocer lets us get a bit more exercise and gets him more interested healthy food. I also find we talk more when we take our time and walk, which is good for both of our emotional well-being.
– Kali Pearson, Public Relations Manager
Learn more about food
We encourage eating healthy fresh foods, including fruits and vegetables every day and explain how foods can have a positive or negative effect on our bodies. I find that in teaching my kids, I also learn and re-learn important things about the foods we eat.
– Carla Pietri, Marketing Manager
We educate our kids to read labels and have them help with preparing the meals so that they are aware of what we are eating as much as possible. It’s also giving them skills they can take with them as they grow up.
– Parminder Saini, Manager Quality and Regulatory Affairs
Emphasize the fun-factor
Play is hugely important to physical and emotional health. Child-led, unstructured play promotes intellectual, physical, social, and emotional well-being, so I encourage my kids to play outside as much as possible.
Play time is important for mom and dad too! Taking 15 minutes to play outside with the kids is a great way to motivate them and a chance to add some activity to your own day, relax and connect with your family.
– Dr. Kate Morrison, N.D., Co-founder and CEO
Be the guiding force
I’ve learned to recognize that all phases, from picky eating to begging for the packaged foods they see, will pass. Rather than fighting with my kids to eat or flatly refusing to let them have things I’d rather they didn’t, I go with it, while continuing to emphasize the merits of healthy eating and presenting healthy options.
Once I stopped battling my daughter about lunchbox snacks, the battle simply ended. Bryn slowly but surely came back to her healthy eating habits and we agreed to a small snack in her lunch on Fridays – a solution that we have now stuck with for well over a year.
– Carolyn Ansley, Co-founder and CMO
Good health isn’t about fads or miracle supplements, and there isn’t just one path for every family. Showing our children how to live a healthy lifestyle through mindful changes to every day living can provide a lifetime of benefits.