Tips for Parents 6 - 10
6) Your dentist is your ally.
Next time your child visits the dentist, ask him to explain what will happen to their teeth if they eat too many sweets and drink too many sugary drinks. You can remind them of this the next time they demand the latest sweets and crisps they’ve seen on TV.
7) Don’t make a fuss.
If your child refuses to eat anything other than junk food, chill out, he will soon find there’s not much point making a fuss if you don’t react.
8) Make food fun.
Remember food is not just fuel it can be fun too. Manufacturers are clever. Woolworths sells flashing lollies. Press a button on the stick of the lolly and a light inside the sweet flashes. Children like cheese strings and squeezy tubes of fromage frais so we, too, need to be a little inventive in how we present our healthy food. Mini portions of foods, like cottage pie, in a small dish look far more appealing than a dollop of food on a plate. You can puree fresh fruit and freeze it in ice lolly moulds to make your own fresh fruit ice lollies. Children love Chinese -style food and you can make it fun to eat by giving them child friendly chopsticks that are joined at the top.
9) Demand school rules on pack lunches.
At lunch children often compare the contents of their lunchboxes and judge each other on whether they have the latest advertised brands to eat. It’s hard to pack a healthy lunchbox with all this peer pressure. Ask your child’s school for some rules about what children can have in their lunch box. Get a group of your child’s friend’s parents together and agree not to give your children heavily marketed processed foods, salty foods, chocolates or sweets in their lunch box.
10) Make your own pack lunch gimmicks.
If a product is marketed as suitable for a child’s lunchbox, take a close look at the label – it’s more than likely that it’s highly processed, sugary, salty or full of fat. Some products contain as much salt as a young child should have in an entire day in one small snack. Beware of play value manufacturers know that children like the DIY aspect of products like build your own pizza or Lunchable Stack Ems. Make your food fun and exciting: try threading things like cherry tomatoes and cheese or fresh and dried fruit onto a little straw.