Teach your kids about nour­ish­ment

Waitaki Herald - - YOUR HEALTH -

Q: I want to make sure my kids are raised to have a healthy re­la­tion­ship with food. Do you have any tips or ad­vice please? – Kim­ber­ley

A: I want to pref­ace this by say­ing the last thing I ever want to do is cre­ate a sit­u­a­tion where any­one ex­pe­ri­ences more guilt – good­ness knows moth­ers experience enough! So please take the fol­low­ing in­for­ma­tion in the way that it is in­tended: I sim­ply want to help you bring more aware­ness to how you com­mu­ni­cate about food, nutri­tion and your body weight, par­tic­u­larly around chil­dren.

If we want our chil­dren – es­pe­cially daugh­ters, as the pres­sure to be ‘‘slim’’ and ‘‘pretty’’ is far greater on girls and women – to have a pos­i­tive re­la­tion­ship with food and their bod­ies, then be­com­ing aware of our own re­la­tion­ship with food, nutri­tion and weight is a crit­i­cal part of this. Sadly, we are kid­ding our­selves if we don’t think chil­dren, par­tic­u­larly girls, are ab­sorb­ing what they see us do and as a re­ward or of­fer­ing it as com­fort sets up a false no­tion that it can soothe strong emo­tions, so please do your ab­so­lute best to avoid this.

Help­ing your chil­dren to un­der­stand that it’s what we do ev­ery day that im­pacts our health not what we do some­times, can also help to pre­vent a di­et­ing men­tal­ity, rigid­ity in food choices or an ‘‘all or noth­ing’’ at­ti­tude when it comes to food. Re­mind them that food is nu­tri­tious (or not) and peo­ple are healthy (or not). And the more nu­tri­tious food they choose, the health­ier they will usu­ally be. ❚ Dr Libby is a nu­tri­tional bio­chemist, best-sell­ing au­thor and speaker. The ad­vice con­tained in this col­umn is not in­tended to be a sub­sti­tute for di­rect, per­son­alised ad­vice from a health pro­fes­sional. Dr Libby is tour­ing 17 towns and cities with her Food Frus­tra­tions event, talk­ing about the con­fu­sion around food and what you’re sup­posed to eat. See dr­libby.com/events for full de­tails.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.