Top Tips to Raise a Great, Healthy Kid

Raising healthy, happy kids is any parent’s goal. Children can only truly learn and develop into individuals when their bodies are taken care of. A happy child is one that will grow into a great person who is not only well-adjusted, but who is healthy as well. You want to create an environment and instill habits that benefit the unique development of your child as he or she grows into an adult.

Focus on their Physical Health

Physical health is so important for children because they are still growing, and they need it to flourish and grow properly. Here is a quick guide on how to focus on their physical health:

1.    Eat Healthy Foods

The start of a healthy body is the food you put into it. Ensure they intake from all the food groups and eat three meals a day. The best place to get vitamins is from the nutrients that are in food.

2.    Make Sure They Get the Vitamins They Need

Busy parents, parents who can’t cook well, and anyone who finds they can’t put together three well-balanced meals should look to vitamin supplements to pick up the slack. For instance, many children lack Omega-3 in their diets. Choose the best Omega-3 for your kids to improve their attention, brain, and physical performance.

3.    Keep Sugary Foods as Special Treats

Sugar is addictive. It also leads to hyperactivity and obesity. You don’t have to cut sugary foods out from your life entirely, however. Simply make sugar-filled treats just that – treats. Save them for birthdays, or special occasions, and have your child eat healthy snacks instead. Not only will this help in their development, it can give your child an appetite for healthy foods. The best thing you can do for your child is to give them healthy habits that will continue into their adulthood.

4.    Introduce them To New Foods as Soon as Possible

You don’t want your child to be comfortable eating only two food groups. Make a wide variety of things for them to eat and start as soon as possible. Similarly, don’t allow your child to leave the table before they are finished with their meal. Your children should, however, be allowed preferences and given correct portions. If they prefer one vegetable over the other, after they have tried both, make the one they prefer. This tip isn’t so much about getting them to like healthy foods, but it is about making them open to trying new items.

5.    Promote Regular Exercise

Exercise in children is so important. Not only does it give your child stamina, it also improves their overall happiness and cognitive abilities. Exercise is needed to keep your child fit and healthy. No child should be obese – encourage exercise at every avenue.

Focus on their Mental Health

A child’s mental and emotional health is important. The state of their mental health will carry with them throughout most of their life. Childhood is a crucial time in development, and how they learn to express themselves, and how they learn to deal and cope with their feelings will dictate their lives later.

1.    Be Honest and Communicative

Children are naturally inquisitive. Encourage this curiosity instead of hampering it. Be as honest as you can with them, even if that honesty is simply informing your child that what they are asking is personal. Don’t block them out. Set boundaries and explain why there are boundaries in terms of what you can and will not answer. Further, you also want them to be honest and communicative, particularly about their feelings and about their day. Let them express themselves and encourage them to vocalize their emotions.

2.    Have a Stable Home Life

Children that have stable, predictable lives have room to grow. This also goes for your parenting. No matter what style you approach, make sure that your parenting is consistent. Punishing a child for an offence once but not at other times will not make them understand, and the confusion will not help either of you: consistency is key. Stable homes and stable lives mean that they have room to grow, and explore the world and their place within it.

3.     Let them Have Independence

There are appropriate levels of independence for every age. With this independence comes decisions for them to make, and responsibilities they oversee. For instance, a young child could be allowed to pick out his or her own clothes, and you can choose from their selection. There are two extremes to this point, and you don’t want to swing too far either way. For instance, a child that takes on too many adult responsibilities will grow up so independent they have a hard time relying on anyone. Children who are too coddled can have a hard time making decisions and being independent.

4.    Let Them Explore

Your child will have a lot of different interests. Let them explore these interests as much as you are able. Many times, your child will move on quickly and want to try out the next thing. It is up to you as a parent to see which interests take hold and which ones could become lifelong or even year-long passions. A well-rounded child who has been introduced to many new experiences is one that is more open to the world at large.

5.    Show and Expect Respect

You need to show your child respect for them to understand it. It means taking them seriously and it means communicating effectively. You should never, however, stand for negative, violent behavior. You should not use pain as a punishment, but you should also never allow your child to hit, belittle, or otherwise disrespect you. Respect, as they say, is a two-way street.

A child’s development is key to who they will become as adults. No child is the same, so no parenting style is, either. Follow this guide so that your child’s development is on the right track, but the specific methods and tactics you use should be unique to your family. Trust in yourself and raise your child the way that feels right to you. 

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