12 Healthy Habits For Kids

Every parent wants what is best for their kids and we spend a great deal of time each day trying to teach them the important things in life, and make sure they don’t grow up to be jerks. Parents worry and fret and correct children in what seems like a non-stop lesson in life. Every culture has their own version of health and happiness and parents from all over the world instill the best of themselves in their children to take into the future with them. Here are some things that most parents would agree are the most important things to teach your children.

Brush your teeth twice a day:

This piece of advice goes back all the way to the invention of toothpaste. It is possible that it’s an evil ploy by the oral health industry, but it is good advice just the same. It can be really hard to get a child to brush their teeth once a day, let alone twice a day, but the message remains the same. They’ll remember it when they are old enough to care about brushing their teeth. So be patient with them.

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Eat a variety of foods:

Sure, eating fruits and vegetables is probably the best thing you can do to stay healthy, but eating a variety of foods that incorporates fruits and vegetables can keep dinner time from getting stale. Introduce foods slowly and don’t get frustrated if children won’t eat certain foods right away. As they get older and their tastes become more mature, they will take interest in other foods.

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Don’t skip meals:

Some kids don’t like to eat. Weird right? If you have an early start to your day it can be hard to get your little ones to eat breakfast so pack something for the commute. A smoothie or granola bar is easy and both are portable and come in a variety of fibre and protein levels to promote good health. Encouraging your kids to start the day off with a healthy breakfast is something that can follow them through life.

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Make exercise fun:

Little kids don’t think about activity and exercise as a necessary. They do it because it is fun. As your children get older, they’ll start to slow down a bit but you can encourage them to continue a healthy, active lifestyle by introducing them to fun activities such as team sports and competitions to keep their interest.

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Read something everyday:

It doesn’t have to be an entire book, but it should be something that your child is interested in. Instill the love of knowledge in them by reading with them. Give books as gifts and introduce your children to magazines, online magazines, ebooks and comics. A variety of reading material will help your child find interesting topics and opportunities to learn.

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Keep hydrated:

Teach your kids to choose water over other drinks. It’s clean and clear and quenches thirst like nothing else. Your children will have their entire lives to drink sodas and teas and sugary juices; start them off right with water and milk and they’ll likely never start drinking the other things.

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Teach your kids to be positive:

Share happy moments with them and talk about the good things in life. When life isn’t going great, talk to them about being thankful for what they already have and have already accomplished. Depression and anxiety are rampant in the world and many children suffer from anxiety. Talking through problems and life events can help put a positive spin on things.

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The importance of sleep:

Children will find it hard to understand, but keep to the bedtime routine and talk to them about why they need so much sleep. Bedtime can be a struggle for both parents and children, but the habits formed by following a schedule can follow your children through life. Teach them to recognize when they are tired and you may be able to avoid cranky kids too.

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Curb screen time:

Today’s generation of children are growing up with more access to information than we could have ever imagined. Unfortunately, we can’t always control what our children see and hear on the internet and television. Be open to questions about what they are learning and don’t get angry when they hear or see something they shouldn’t. Talk to them about managing their screen time and what is appropriate and what is not.

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Cherish your skin:

Teach your kids to be good to their skin by applying sunscreen and keeping their skin clean and dry. Sure, they are going to get dirty – and they should! But the day to day care of skin is important. Children should get in the habit of asking for sunscreen when they go outside to avoid sunburns and feeling ill.

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Help your kids build self-esteem:

Children can sometimes feel shy or unsure of themselves. Don’t scold them for not being outgoing or during times they don’t want to play with others. Children are basically small adults and you wouldn’t want someone yelling at you if you didn’t feel like being social, right? Encourage your children to pursue their passions and work on their weaknesses. This can all lead to better self-esteem throughout life and make them feel confident in their abilities.

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Rest when they are sick:

Sometimes it feels like you can’t get your kids to slow down, even during cold and flu season. Encourage your children to rest and sleep when they are sick. This will help them get better faster. Spend time with your child doing the things they like doing when they are sick so that you can keep an eye on them. Remind your child to drink plenty of fluids and take any required medications to get better.

Little girl lying sick in her bed with her teddy bear.

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