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Children, healthy nutrition

by Josephine Andrews
Published: Last Updated on 164 views

The Morning Theater

“Milk is disgusting!”, “I don’t like the cheese sandwich!” or “But I want…”, some children moan in a tour and stamp their feet on the floor. Who does not know that? Healthy eating is not exactly interesting for children. And what other mums cook always tastes better anyway. However, the delicacies advertised with cool slogans taste best.

Sometimes it’s not easy to empathize with children. Parents usually mean well, but children think and feel very differently. “Children – healthy nutrition”, how do you make it easier(er)?

Bring variety to the table

Do you like everything yourself? Definitely not. Therefore, allow your child to say “no” to certain foods. It may refuse pure milk and cheese, but reach for cocoa and yoghurt. Both also provide the calcium that is important for the bones – just like sesame, by the way.

But before you accept that your child doesn’t like a food, they should at least try it. However, you should not apply pressure, otherwise you will achieve the opposite: Your child will get attention, it will increase its defensiveness and maybe at some point a power game will develop. Phases of defiance and no are part of the normal development of a child. Praise and encouragement stabilize a certain behavior, while scolding and disregard make it rarer. Don’t let yourself be provoked. For example, if your child refuses carrots today, try again later. It means: keep offering and be a role model yourself! What is served frequently is usually eaten with pleasure: humans are creatures of habit.

Don’t give your child something sweet between meals (like bars or biscuits), even if they defiantly refused a portion of the last main meal. The snack satisfies hunger, and at the next meal the drama starts all over again. If your child is really hungry between meals, fruit or yoghurt are the options of choice.

Eating – together and in peace

Sometimes the family is away all day. It is all the more important that everyone gets together for a meal once a day. Eating, talking, laughing together – this increases the appetite and promotes an intact family life. Eating and drinking is a pleasure and should be fun. If your child doesn’t want to: It often helps to playfully let a beloved stuffed animal do exactly what you want your child to do. Small children in particular would rather watch their cuddly animal’s behavior than watch their parents.

Main meals are fixed points that provide temporal orientation. Children need order, rituals and rhythm because they provide security. Quiet plays an equally important role. Make sure the table is really set before you call out to eat. The child should be able to concentrate on eating, which is impossible if you still have to constantly get missing things.

Since Maria Montessori it has been known that children learn best through concentrated observation without words. Too much talking to the child and constant explanations disturb the concentration. Watching TV while eating is also a taboo!

A cozy table atmosphere also invites you to stay longer and take your time with the meal. This is important because the stomach can only signal whether it is full enough 15 to 20 minutes after you start eating.

“learn” to eat

“What Hans doesn’t learn, Hans never learns again”: Nutrition education begins in infancy. The longer an infant has been breastfed, the less likely it is that the child will later become overweight. Breastfed infants release the breast when full. They learn to scream to get something pleasant: the mother comes and soothes, changes the full diaper or gives the breast or bottle. However, if the baby is sedated with a bottle with every cry, it will learn to eliminate or suppress anything unpleasant with soothing food and drink. This is the first building block for obesity .

Traditional nutritional education emphasized the “how,” such as table manners and eating up. Today it is mostly about choosing the right food from the wide range of foods (see below) and not consuming too large portions. Let your child choose how much to eat. Children still have a functioning natural feeling of satiety. You should get a small portion on your plate first and you can add more at any time. Don’t force your child to eat, it’s better to leave something on the plate. Every child is sometimes more and sometimes less hungry. A child who eats poorly for a short period of time is rarely a cause for concern. It is also possible that your child suddenly feels a blessed appetite and eats more than what is needed for days. Therefore, it does not have to be fat for a long time, maybe it is in a growth phase. You should only speak to your pediatrician if your eating habits have been noticeably different over a longer period of time.

Your child can also help with the shopping. Think together about what groceries you want to buy and what to eat later. With older children, you can study the list of ingredients on the food. Your child may even want to help with cooking or setting the table. Children often want to make their parents happy, for example by surprising them with a set breakfast table – but you must have taught them beforehand.

Ready meals should rarely be on the menu so you know what the family is actually eating. Meals that you prepare yourself from ingredients that are as fresh as possible are healthier and free from additives and flavorings. Together with the child, it can be a lot of fun to prepare simple dishes yourself. Washing fruit and raw vegetables (which child does not like to play at the tap?) and chopping them up are great experiences for the child. It also trains the senses when the child realizes that it has to cry when onions are cut, for example. Preschool children in particular are particularly curious and like to try out new things. There are no limits to the variety of fruit and vegetables. And dishes that you have helped to cook yourself must taste good. Maybe they’ll get a funny name like ”

The right choice of food

The overabundance of food on offer makes it difficult for many parents to choose what to eat. Children are still growing and need a certain minimum amount of energy and nutrients. The Research Institute for Child Nutrition in Dortmund recommends eating plenty of plant-based foods and beverages, eating foods of animal origin only moderately and being sparing with foods high in fat and sugar.

At a minimum, one hot meal a day with a preponderance of fresh potatoes, brown rice or whole-grain pasta, and vegetables (cooked, raw, or in a salad) should be. Combine the meal with a little meat two to three times a week, fish once a week. Vegetarian meals made from legumes or grains, such as stews, casseroles or patties, are also welcome.

The other two main meals can be cold and often consist of bread or muesli combined with low-fat milk and milk products, sausage, fruit or raw vegetables. Offer children a drink with every meal: Energy-free or low-energy drinks such as drinking water, mineral water, unsweetened herbal or fruit teas or heavily diluted juice spritzers.

Two snacks such as bread, a dairy product or fruit complete the daily menu. A plate with bite-sized fruit invites you to grab it. Occasional pastries, cakes, or sweets as a snack between meals are okay, too. Because: Forbidden things appeal to children (and adults) all the more. They snack secretly and completely excessively. Sweets eaten in moderation, on the other hand, have their place in a balanced diet.

After the first year of life, children can easily participate in family meals. There is no need for special products for children or nutrient-enriched foods. Critical minerals and vitamins in children are vitamin D , calcium , folic acid and iodine . They are often absent from food. Season with salt, which contains iodine and folic acid , from time to time – especially if fresh herbs and spices are not available.

Sentences that help…

  • When a child experiences only negative criticism, they learn to judge.
  • When a child experiences hostilities, they learn to fight ruthlessly.
  • When a child faces ridicule, they learn to be shy.
  • When a child lives in fear, it learns to worry.
  • When a child is taught guilt or shame, they learn to feel guilty.
  • When a child experiences tolerance, they learn to be patient.
  • When a child is encouraged, they learn to be confident.
  • When a child experiences acceptance, they learn to love.
  • When a child is validated, their confidence grows.
  • When a child is recognized, they learn that it is good to have a goal.
  • When a child is treated honestly, it learns what truth is.
  • When a child is judged impartially, he learns justice.
  • If a child is not unsettled, it learns to trust itself and others.
  • When a child experiences kindness, they learn that the world is a beautiful place, worth living in, loving and being loved in.

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