10 Tips for Raising a Healthy Child

It’s hard, if not impossible to think of a better gift you can give your child than the gift of health. The choices you make for your child on a daily basis have the power to help or hurt him or her when it comes to well-being and vitality. Beyond the impact of healthy choices, each step towards healthy living you make towards raising a healthy child, lays the groundwork to empower your child to make a lifetime of healthy choices.

Raising a healthy child is important but it doesn’t have to be hard. Check out my top 10 tips for raising a healthy child and start making healthy steps today!

  1. Clean Up Time. The quality of the foods you feed your child makes a difference. Aim to choose “clean” options that are free of pesticides, artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives. Choose foods that have not been genetically modified as research points to such foods having the potential to cause long term damage. Choose organic options whenever possible. While toxic substances are not good for any of us, in children’s smaller, developing bodies they may block the absorption of important food nutrients necessary for normal healthy growth.
  2. Their Cups Overfloweth. Skip sugary juices and sodas in favor of homemade fruit-infused water. Make sure your child gets plenty of water by offering it not only at meals, but also by keeping water bottles around for easy sipping at all times. Water helps detoxify our bodies and prevents dehydration. Children are more vulnerable to dehydration than adults. Remember, dehydration can have a multitude of negative side effects including a reduction in both mental and physical performance.
  3. Focus on Produce. One thing pretty much every nutrition expert can agree upon is the importance of plenty of fresh produce. Feed your child a variety of fruits and vegetables. Fruit and vegetables are packed with essential nutrients and antioxidants that are essential for your child’s health, growth, and development. Make them the cornerstone of the whole family’s diet!
  4. Overhaul Your Cleaning Routine. Good health is about more than what is on your child’s plate. Create a healthier home environment by using non-toxic household products.
  5. Chew on This. Does your child tend to rush through meals? Chewing helps release healthy enzymes in food and makes digestion and nutrient absorption easier. Teach your child to chew food thoroughly to reap these benefits. Make counting chews into a game until it becomes habit!
  6. Make it Easy Breezy. Make healthy eating easy by stocking the pantry and fridge with nutritious snacks that are easy to grab. Wash and cut fruit and veggies, peel boiled eggs, and make snack-sized bags of things like carrot and celery slices for little hands to grab when hunger strikes.
  7. Make It a Family Affair. Teach your child how to make healthy foods by involving him or her in healthy meal planning and preparation. Even the littlest hands can help do things like tear lettuce, snap green beans, or sprinkle premeasured herbs and spices on food. As an added bonus, children are often more willing to try new foods when they’ve had a hand in helping to prepare them!
  8. Supplement Wisely. A host of supplements are available on the market today, but make sure you are getting the highest quality supplements by purchasing whole food supplements. Synthetic supplements are often loaded with sugar, artificial colors and preservatives. Not only are such ingredients not good for your child, but they are typically not absorbed as well and can be harmful if consumed in large quantities. Here are my recommendations-- http://www.olive-seed.com/collections/supplements-for-children.
  9. Get a Move On. Pair nutritious eating habits with an active lifestyle. Choose activities that get everyone in the house moving. Opt for activities that are both fun and realistic for little ones so that they will develop a confidence and love for exercise. Remember, exercise isn’t limited to the gym. Family hikes, playground time, roller skating, and more can all get heartrates up while everyone is having fun!
  10. Go Green. Did you know something as simple as adding some house plants to your home can help you raise a healthier child? That’s right, by putting some plants out around your home you are helping to oxygenate your home and improve air quality. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency ranks indoor air quality as one of the top five environmental risks to public health. Placing common household plants throughout your home is a great way to purify the air you and your child breathe each day. Consider putting your child in charge of caring for at least one of the house plants to teach responsibility while purifying the air in your home!