Dr. Pradeep Gidwani

Pediatrician’s Corner

Eating Healthy as a Family

In honor of March as National Nutrition Month, it is a great opportunity to take a look at what your child is eating and how you can support him or her in eating healthy foods. Remember, getting your child to eat healthy is a family effort.  Here are some quick tips to consider:

  • Cook more meals at home. When you cook at home you have more opportunities to eat healthy.
  • Eat together. Research shows eating together as a family helps children in many ways and allows families to connect.
  • As children get older, involve them in shopping and making meals.  Teach them about healthy choices along the way.
  • Have a variety of healthy snacks like fruits and vegetables to offer children. If children develop a taste for healthy snacks, they can avoid empty calories like chips, candy and cookies more easily.
  • Encourage children to drink water instead of sugary drinks. Avoid high-fructose corn syrup which is in so many drinks and foods.

Building Healthy Habits

Throughout the county, you may have seen colorful signs with the numbers 5-2-1-0. The 5-2-1-0 Every Day! campaign promotes four practices that can be adopted daily by young children and their families to improve overall health and avoid obesity:

  • 5 or more servings of fruits and vegetables.
  • 2 hours or less of recreational screen time. (Keep TV out of children’s bedrooms and no TV under the age of 2).
  • 1 hour or more of physical activity.
  • 0 sugary drinks – drink more water instead!

In support of building healthy habits, YMCAs across the nation will be celebrating Healthy Kids Day on April 26, 2014. It is filled with fun, engaging and creative activities that foster healthy living for kids and their families. All activities are free and open to the public.

To find a Healthy Kids Day celebration near you, visit www.ymca.org/events/ymca-healthy-kids-day.html.

For more family healthy eating tips, visit First 5 San Diego’s Healthy Start website at www.first5.demosite.us/healthy

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