Family Health and Fitness Day is a good time to focus on what you can do to lead the charge in your family for better health.
I enjoy being a family doc, but my most important job is being a dad to my four kids. Moms and dads can help their children create healthy habits by being their best role model. Certainly, moms are influential to kids, but dads are actually the ones that can have the most influence on kids' food choices, what they decide to eat, and like. If dad drinks his milk and eats his carrots, guess what? Kids are more likely to drink their milk and eat their carrots.
There are three ways families can come together for health:
- Make time to eat together as a family.
- Kids who grow up in a home with regular family mealtimes are happier and are more successful in school.
- Stock your kitchen with easy-to-prepare, healthy foods, and let the kids help. Kids as young as two years old can help and they love it! The mess you will make together will be worth it.
- Be active, and make it a priority for yourself and your children.
- Be sure they see you moving, and move more together as a family.
- Shoot some hoops, play catch, or take a daily walk around the neighborhood.
- Physical activity can happen indoors, too, and in small spaces. Just be creative, and be there.
- Kids also need plenty of sleep.
- Adequate sleep helps with overall health, improves attitude and the ability to handle stress.
- A well-rested child will be willing to make healthy choices, like being more active and trying a new vegetable.
So, no matter your family size or structure, you can make healthy habits a family affair if you focus on it together.
Learn more about our Health and Wellness Council Members here.