A Family Affair: 5 Tips for Getting the Whole Family to Eat Better
If you want a happy, healthy, energized family, you should take a look at what foods you are putting in your body. Exercise is essential and can do wonders for your health, but nothing is more important than nutrition. Our bodies simply must have adequate nutrition in order to function at full capacity.
1. Choose Whole Foods
Foods that are eaten in their natural form, free from processing, additives, and refining are always better for you than pre-packaged foods. Aim to fill your diet with fruits, veggies, nuts, seeds, legumes, and grains. Instead of the granola bar filled with unnecessary ingredients, grab a handful of almonds. Start by supplementing those processed food options, one choice at a time, for whole foods and eventually you will find that those healthy choices result in weight management, energy, better skin and higher quality of sleep.
2. Include the Entire Household
As you take steps toward healthier eating, make sure the whole family is involved. Start by making a plan to eat most of your meals at home, cook together and eat together. It is proven that food preparation leads to better food choices throughout the week. Incorporate your whole household into preparing menus, creating shopping lists, selecting items at the grocery store, and preparing food at home. The more ownership each family member takes over the meal-prepping process, the more likely they will reach for the healthier options and make better decisions. If you have children in your family, you will be teaching them good habits early on by getting them involved.
3. Plan Your Snacks
Snacking is the easiest way to upend healthy eating habits. When you are hungry and do not have a plan, you are more likely to reach for unhealthy snacks and overeat. If you wash your fruits and veggies in advance and store them in appropriate containers in the fridge, you will be more likely to reach for carrots and hummus combo than the prepackaged cookies. You can also, try a gut-healthy guac (with yogurt or sauerkraut) to give you and your family something healthy to snack on when you want something in between meals.
4. Grow Your Food
If you grow your own foods, you are more likely to eat the fruits of your labor instead of unhealthier options. Whatever region you live in, there are certainly plenty of seasonal produce options you can keep your garden stocked with. Use outdoor space and/or planters to grow fruits and vegetables; it doesn’t take an overwhelming amount of work to have a simple and beautiful garden. Have a little fun with your recipes by making a concerted effort to create meals around the produce you grow.
5. Eat the Rainbow
With food, we often focus on taste and smell, but the look of what you are eating is just as important. Make food more appealing by adding color. The whole family will benefit from the addition and mix of nutrients. Particularly if you have young children, they will be more engaged and less reluctant to eat if their food choices are appetizing and bright.
Getting your family to eat well doesn’t have to be rocket science. Start by choosing whole, unprocessed foods one meal at a time and involve everyone in the household with meal planning, making shopping lists, picking out groceries and preparing meals. Plan your snacks and keep healthy options readily available. Figure out seasonal produce in your region and start growing your own fruits and vegetables. Finally, keep your meals colorful to add excitement and nutrition for the kids and adults alike.
Dylan Foster is a writer at healthwellwise.com. He enjoys writing about topics related to how our homes affect our health and happiness. When he isn’t writing for the website, he works as an office assistant and enjoys hiking local trails with his dog, Samson.