Cut out the candy. Increase the fruit and physical activity. Children will never miss it, if you do not cause them to develop a craving for it.

It’s easy to take a short cut by handing a child a sweet.

If you answer yes to any of these questions you may be setting your child up for increased odds of obesity, cavities, type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, hypertension, mood disorders, and increased risk of heart disease:

  • Do you frequently reward your child with a special treat for an accomplishment?
  • Have you given your child a treat to distract them when they are upset or moody?
  • Do you quiet them when they are crying or whining by allowing them to have a treat?
  • Do you allow them to have in between snacks with empty calories?
  • Do you allow them to have soda pop or sugary beverages?
  • While being a good parent is not an easy job, it is a large responsibility and with this responsibility we need to recognize that childhood sets the stage for adulthood. Our eating habits are pretty much set while we are too young to make wise choices. This makes it the responsibility of a wise parent to help instill good eating habits.

How can we encourage a good diet?

  • So how as a parent can we encourage our child to eat right? Rewarding our children with empty calorie foods can sabotage their diet by filling them up and leaving little room in their stomach for the nutritious foods their bodies require.

Do we find comfort in candy and deserts?

  • Another thing that improper diet does is teach your child to find comfort in sweet or salty treats so that any time life throws some turmoil their way they may find themselves becoming addicted to poor eating habits in order to cope with any issues that crop up. It sets up a false impression that sweets and treats are more desirable than healthy eating alternatives.

Incorporate non-sweet treats into their daily routine.

  • Perhaps you should consider some non-food motivators or at least healthier food motivators. Incentives such as fruit, playing a game with your child, reading a story, physical and mental challenges are more rewarding without the long term bad effects and you can sleep better knowing you have given your child a better chance at a longer and healthier life.

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About Judy Sheldon

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Judy Sheldon is a freelance writer who writes for many online publications.