If bad eating habits reign, they can be hard to change especially when they’ve become comfortable routines. But it can be changed.
Don’t Ban Any Food Outright
Once kids get their first taste of crunchy, sweet or salty foods, it’s hard to get them unhooked. Start by setting limits. Expalin to the child why you are trying to limit the food so that they don’t gorge on it when away from home. And above all, don’t use food as a reward or punishment.
Let them be masters of their decision
Look over your child’s school lunch options and discuss what choices they could make during lunch. Better yet, send home cooked meal. It is better on health and your wallet. To encourage them to not blow their pocket change on sugary or salty treats, give them plenty of healthy snacks, such as apples, nuts, cheese or fruits to bring to school.
Avoid Buying Unhealthy Foods in Bulk
If you have to buy junk food, buy the smallest possible package of that food. And store any bulk-size snack foods out of kids’ sight and reach. It is unreasonable for a kid to make diet change when adults indulge on junk food. Healthy eating demands a complete change in the diet of all individuals. If you don’t buy junk, they won’t indulge in it.
Warn Kids About Juice and liquid calories
Make tweens and teens aware of how many empty calories are in their favorite unhealthy drinks , and advise them to choose water instead. Give your toddler plenty of water and plain milk to avoid getting them used to sugary juice or chocolate milk. If you do give them juice, give them 100 percent fruit juice and water it down, mixing equal parts water and juice.
Promote Fruits and Veggies at Dinner
Entice your picky eater to try a healthy, vegetable-rich dish, let them watch you prepare it and allow them to add in some ingredients themselves under your supervision. Give it a name like Tim’s Tacos.
Be a Role model
Take advantage of the monkey-see, monkey-do behavior and make healthy eating choices in front of them. Eat snacks and meals with your child whenever possible. Always try something new.
Use Small Portions
Use smaller plates , bowls and utensils for your child to eat with, and allow them to serve themselves when they are old enough to safely do so. This will make them feel "like a grown-up," while helping them learn to measure out how much they want to eat and understand portion size. Encourage them to take one serving at a time and go back for seconds only if they are still hungry.
Help Them Recognize When They’ve Eaten Enough
Remind your children to stop eating once they begin to feel full. Tell them that it’s best to only eat as much as they want at that time, and that the leftovers can be finished later when they become hungry again.
Stick to a Strict Meal and Snack Schedule
Keeping to a regular meal and snack time schedule discourages kids from grazing throughout the day, or becoming too hungry in between meals. If your child skips a meal, do not let them "make up for it" with candy or cookies.