Tips to becoming a great food role model: Babies start imitating their parents almost straight away; they smile when we smile, make similar noises, repeat words and eating is no different. Raising a healthy eater starts with us! Kids are your food shadows! So how and what you eat and shop, and even your attitude to food, they will copy! You have an important role in guiding and coaching your children as they make choices about eating. Children who see their parents buying, cooking and eating healthy foods are more likely to eat healthy foods themselves – we eat what we are familiar with!
Not diet but lifestyle
- Plan your shopping so children see you buying healthy foods (don’t shop hungry or in a hurry)
- Mindful eating, shopping, cooking, planning
- Avoid using food as a reward or consequence
- Make time for a healthy breakfast
- Eat when they eat
- Make sure you opt for healthy snacks (have them in your bag for when you feel like some)
- Attitude to food: food should not be a bad thing but about enjoyment and about what they can eat not about cannot eat. Adopt ‘Positive Food Talk’, watch your language; not ‘diet and guilt talk’.
- Take bottles of water everywhere
- Make sure you don’t eat in front of screens
- Grow or pick fresh food together
- Make sure you have a good sleep routine and pattern
- Leave the car for small journeys or park a way away from school, shops etc. to improve activity levels and time spent in the fresh air
- And Enjoy your Food and the process of buying, cooking and eating it!
How do you Role model Healthy Eating?
How many days do you sit and have breakfast with your children? 7 5 3 1 none
Do you eat breakfast? Always Sometimes Never
Do you use food as rewards or consequences? Never Sometimes often always
How much water do you drink a day? 2L + 1L 500ML 2 glasses nothing
Do you get proper sleep? Always Often Sometimes Never
Do you talk about your weight or diet? Never Sometimes Often Always
Do you talk positively about eating and food? Always Often Sometimes Never
Are you fully relaxed and present during meal time? Always Often Sometimes Never
Do you eat in front of the television? Never Sometimes Often Always
How often do you get outside for fresh air? 7 days 5 days 3 days 1 day rarely
Do you exercise minimum 20 minutes a day? Always Often Sometimes Never
When you are hungry, outside meals, time do you eat crisps, chocolate, cookies etc.? Never Sometimes Often Always
Areas where I could improve as a role model to healthy Eating Habits are circles from the right side:
If you would like more tips and advice on how to be the best parent you can for your children to follow by example then please visit www.parentingsuccesscoaching.com