Promote a culture of health for your children

We all know the expression "do what I say, not the way I do." But this admonition rarely works for a number of reasons. If you can’t follow your own advice, why would someone else? And if people respect you, they will want to do what you do. After all, what you say is really just theory until you show that it is translated into practice.

The many lifestyle medicine experts of the True Health Initiative not only give good advice, but also apply it in their own lives.

Here we hear from experts who face the same real challenges that make health the norm for a household like the rest of us. I encourage you to do what you say because your advice has passed the critical test: it is also what you do with and for the people you love most in the world.

To be an example

Michael Dansinger, MD
Founding Director, Tufts Medical Center Diabetes Reversal Program; Wellness Director, Boston Heart Lifestyle Program

I am a lifestyle medicine doctor and the parent of three children aged 15, 13 and 11. My wife and I have put great emphasis on mapping healthy lifestyles and telling our children that the purpose of these practices is to stay healthy.

Our children see us how they prepare nutritious meals, be it healthy salads or cooked dishes that we teach them. You learn, how one a good balance between good food and "treats" finds, and watch as we get a little stricter with age.

We train daily and encourage every child to participate in team sports such as diving, basketball and athletics. You learn good sportiness and focus on gradual self-improvement and inspiring teammates. As a family, we participate in volunteer activities that help others live healthier lives, including working in soup kitchens and teaching kids swimming classes.

Our children can easily see that we take our commitment to a healthy life seriously and that it is integrated into our daily life. Together, these family exercises practice them to live their best lives. Set the stage Joel Fuhrman, MD

Board certified family doctor, nutritionist, six-time bestselling author of the New York Times, author of "Disease proof your child"

Not all parents recognize the importance of healthy child nutrition; Those facing a tough fight because children eat junk food have become the norm. However, once unhealthy behaviors are found, they are very difficult to derail.
I encourage you to create a home environment full of healthy influences. Have dinner together as a family. Keep a variety of healthy, natural foods ready, so that the children can choose and enjoy their favorites: cut raw vegetables with hummus or other homemade bean and nut dips. It’s never too early to talk about how vegetables build our brains, not just our bodies and how processed foods weaken our brains, make us less intelligent, and even cause misfortune. Even small children can understand the concept that what is in the mouth can help or hurt any part of the body.

Try not to make food conflict. Make sure your children know that your craving for healthy food comes from your love for them and the desire for a happy, healthy life. There will always be opportunities when your kids want to eat what their friends eat. In these situations, I suggest giving them some freedom, making suggestions to minimize the damage, but not checking or insulting them.

The daily eating habits that you establish at home form the basis for your children’s nutritional preferences and future health.

Make room for mistakes

Tom Rifai, MD, FACP

Henry Ford Health System

Regional Medical Director, Metabolic Health; Wayne State University Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine
While giving your child a legacy of physical and emotional wellness requires dedication and sometimes hard work, some of the most important Teaching is pretty straightforward.An often overlooked one is compassionate about yourself and others on your family’s journey to a healthy lifestyle. Instead of ourselves for "Slip" to beat up, let’s get this in "opportunities" to "S.L.I.P." transform (stop, look, examine and plan). Try to feel guilty about challenges and face the occasion instead.

For example, if you are on vacation with another family who was planning ahead and went to a restaurant while your family was late and took a taxi, indicate how good their idea was instead of complaining that you were not there were . You might suggest going to the hotel together as families, "especially because we all shared a little dessert party." This shows your child the value you personally have on a good relationship with physical activity

and Lay food. It is important to everyone like that "as possible" bring to. Greet the family to ask questions and answer without judgment. And remember, lifestyle always means learning. You may need to look up answers to questions. Please use a reliable source such as the True Health Initiative or the Center for Science in the Public Interest.

Skip the lecture Dina Rose, PhD Sociologist, parent educator, nutritionist

The best way to promote a culture of health for your children is completely inconsistent: don’t talk to your children about health (or at least not before adopting healthy habits). It turns out that misfiring almost always occurs.

For example, there is extensive research showing that more parents promote healthy eating because the fewer children they want to consume, the more healthy it is. In a study published in Health Education Research, children reported less that they liked a drink when it was marked as healthy than when it was simply marked as new. Think about it like this: You can enjoy food because it tastes good; This is called an experience benefit. Or you can enjoy food because it makes you healthy; This is known as an instrumental advantage. When people focus on the instrumental benefits of something, whether eating good food, being active or not, they enjoy it less.

The idea of ​​doing the right thing is better than simply knowing what is right is not as radical as it seems. Finally, we bring children to the habit of bathing before we teach them the value of hygiene. We teach them the habit of driving in a car seat before we teach them safety in the car. The examples continue. So, skip the conversation about health and get involved directly in actions that transform wellness expertise into behavior. You can help your children find healthy ways before they even know that their habits are good for them.


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