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Feb 15, 2013

Preventing our kids to be OVERWEIGHT

The good news is that with some planning and strategy, you can set your child up for a lifetime of healthy living now. Here are 10 ways.

1. Start during pregnancy.
Studies show that excessive weight gain during pregnancy can actually put your baby at risk for being overweight as a child. And teaching healthy habits before your child even starts kindergarten will encourage a lifetime of healthy living. 

2. Be a role model.
Forcing children to eat vegetables isn’t going to make them want to do it. Instead, model the healthy habits you want for your children, like eating breakfast every morning and they’ll be more likely to follow suite.

3. Eat more fiber.
Although eating fiber-rich foods like fruits and vegetables are low-calorie, nutritious options that can keep your child feeling full longer .

4. Give technology a break.
All that time spent texting, on Facebook, or listening to the iPod is a major risk factor for obesity so limit the tech time and get your kids moving.  

5. Get creative.
Got a picky eater? Variety is the spice of life when it comes to getting your child to eat fruits and vegetables. Try different ways to cook veggies like roasted, grilled or dehydrated. 

6. Find opportunities to move.
It’s recommended that children get an hour of physical activity every day, but between working long hours, after-school activities, and safety concerns, finding time can be challenging but there are ways to make it work.

7. Get them involved.
When children participate in meal preparation, they’re much more likely to make better choices.  Devise the food shopping list together or let your children pick out new vegetables they want to try.

8. Exercise together.
If you’re not active, it’s unlikely your children will want to be.  “For kids, exercise doesn’t need to be anything complicated.

9. Snack smart.
Instead of grazing all day on pretzels and chips, snacks should be an opportunity for your child to fill in the gaps with nutrients she lacked at other meals. Emphasize fruits and vegetables with some protein or a carbohydrate and keep it small so she’s still hungry for dinner.  

10. Eat meals together.
According to a recent study  children and teens who ate family meals together 3 or more times a week were 12 percent less likely to be overweight.