10 Tips for being a Healthy Tiny Triton
Habit 1: Make eating colorful
Eating foods of different colors isn’t just fun — it has health benefits too. Help your kids
understand the nutritional value of including a rainbow of colorful foods in their regular diet.
That doesn’t mean that every meal needs to be multicolored. But you should make an effort to
incorporate a range of fruits and vegetables of different hues into their diet. Let the colors range
from red, blue, and orange, to yellow, green, and white.
Habit 2: Don’t skip breakfast
Instilling a routine of regular mealtimes in childhood can help make it more likely that your kids will
continue this good habit when they’re older. Teach them that a healthy breakfast:
kick starts their brain and energy
helps keep them strong
keeps chronic diseases at bay
Harvard Medical School confirms that going without breakfast correlates with four times the
likelihood of obesity. And the high fiber in many breakfast cereals can help reduce the risk of
diabetes and heart disease. Watch the sugar content, though.
Habit 3: Pick enjoyable physical activities
Not every child loves sports. Some may dread gym class. But if they see you being active and find
physical activities they enjoy, staying healthy and active becomes easy.
They may very likely carry their love of these activities into adulthood.
If your child hasn’t found their sports niche yet, encourage them to keep trying, and be active with
them. Expose them to a range of physical activities like swimming, archery, or gymnastics. They’re
bound to find something they enjoy.
Habit 4: Don’t be a couch potato
Get kids, and yourself, off the sofa and out the door. The Mayo Clinic reports that kids who watch
more than an hour or two of television a day are at greater risk for a number of health problems,
impaired performance at school
behavioral difficulties, including emotional and social problems and attention disorders
obesity or being overweight
irregular sleep, including trouble falling asleep and resisting bedtime
less time to play
Habit 5: Read every day
Developing strong reading skills is an essential component of your child’s success in school now,
and at work later in life.
According to the Cleveland Clinic, reading helps build a child’s self-esteem, relationships with
parents and others, and success in later life.
It’s recommended you make reading a part of your child’s playtime and bedtime routines. The Cleveland Clinic also suggests that daily reading to children can begin as early as 6 months of
age. Choose books your kids like so that they view reading as a treat rather than a chore.
Habit 6: Drink water, not soda
You can keep the message simple. Water is healthy. Soft drinks are unhealthy.
Even if your kids don’t understand all of the reasons why too much sugar is bad for them, you can
help them understand the basics.
For example, according to the American Heart Association (AHA)Trusted Source, the sugar in soft
drinks provides no nutrients. It also adds calories that can lead to weight problems. Water, on the
other hand, is a vital resource that humans can’t live without.
Habit 7: Look at labels (food labels, not designer)
Your kids, especially preteens and teens, may care about the labels on their clothes. Show them
there’s another type of label that’s more important to their health: the food nutrition label.
Show kids how their favorite packaged foods contain labels with vital information about nutrition.
To avoid overwhelming them, focus on a few key parts of the label, such as the amount per serving
saturated fats and trans fats
grams of sugar
Habit 8: Enjoy a family dinner
With hectic family schedules, it’s hard to find time to sit down and enjoy a meal together. But it’s
worth it to try.
According to the University of Florida, research has shown sharing a family meal means that:
family bonds get stronger
kids are more well-adjusted
everyone eats more nutritious meals
kids are less likely to be obese or overweight
kids are less likely to abuse drugs or alcohol
Habit 9: Spend time with friends
Friendships are very important to the healthy development of school-aged children, according to
research published by the Clinical Child and Family Psychology Review Trusted Source.
Playing with friends teaches kids valuable social skills such as communication, cooperation, and
problem-solving. Having friends can also affect their performance in school.
Encourage your kids to develop a variety of friendships and to play with friends often. It will set
them up with life skills they can draw on for years to come.
Habit 10: Stay positive
It’s easy for kids to get discouraged when things don’t go their way. Help them learn resilience when
they experience setbacks by showing them the importance of staying positive.
According to research in the Clinical Child and Family Psychology Review Trusted Source, children
as well as adults can benefit from positive thinking and good relationships.
Help your kids develop healthy self-esteem and a positive mindset by teaching them they are lovable,
capable, and unique, no matter what challenges they encounter.