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Top Ten Tips

1. Introduce children to veggies early. When they’re babies, let them acquire a taste for vegetables before giving them stuff like applesauce.

2. Encourage trying. A child should try a food at least 8 or 10 times before determining that he or she doesn’t like it. Try it cooked different ways.

3. Variety is the spice of life, so serve a wide variety of foods. The more healthy foods children try before the age of 2, the better the chances that they will be a good eaters later.

4. Plan ahead. When you plan meals in advance, you are more likely to cook than to pick up fast food. And involve the kids. When kids help plan and prepare meals, they are more likely to eat them.

5. “If you don’t eat your dinner…” Establish rules that promote good habits and stick to them. Teach your children that cheeseburgers and chicken fingers are no substitute for a healthy, well-balanced meal.

6. Watch portion size. A serving of pasta is about a fistful. A serving of potato chips is about a handful — not the whole bag!

7. Enjoy healthy snacks and desserts. Fruit, carrot sticks, low-salt pretzels, and trans-fat-free popcorn make for healthy alternatives to typical snacks. Limit cakes and candy to occasional treats.

8. Don’t snack in front of the TV. It encourages mindless shoveling.

9. Don’t just eat…dine. Make family meals special events with candles and great conversation — the benefi ts to your family will extend beyond your plate.

10. Lead by example and value good food. If you eat well, your kids are more likely to eat well too.

Another Healthy Idea

Meatless Monday is a national public health campaign to help Americans prevent heart disease, stroke and cancer. The goal of the campaign is to reduce the consumption of saturated fat in America by at least 15% by 2010 – by encouraging people to be moderate in their eating and meal planning

Visit the Parent Forums  Visit the Parent Forums for more great tips!

© 2005 Public Interest Media Group.