Everyone, in today’s world, has some weird habit that will surprise you, when it surfaces. Some have a fetish for tattoos and others can have French fries with ice-cream. My aunt was known for stuffing food down her daughter’s throat which resulted in my cousin, who happens to be as old as I am, being three times my size until she was big enough to say no. The poor thing despised any kind of food and, despite being full of food, she had a lot of deficiencies which made her quite irritable in many ways. Nutrition was surely not on her mother’s list. Watching this as we grew up, my cousin and I vowed never to submit our children to such torture. We made a list which we opened a few days back and added a few more points to the same.
This had to be point number one because we were sick of being forced to do things. Life, to us, was a rat-race. Be it studies, food, games or marriage; everything had to be done in a certain way otherwise ‘people’ would talk. Everything had to be done to our level best so that our parents could show their face to ‘relatives’. It is best to ignore such negative and stress-inducing people and let your child find their own strengths and talents. Don’t force them to conform to somebody else’s standards. Every child is different.
2. NEVER STUFF YOUR LOVED ONES:
You may love the person all you want but you can never make them eat everything you cook for them. Everyone has a limit after which they will just push you away. Emotions play a big role in the end. When your children ask for food, give them how much they will eat. Do not waste food and do not stuff it into them just because you do not want to waste the food. Let your children eat how much they want to. Eating today’s food tomorrow is not a sin.
3. FRUITS & VEGETABLES ARE HEALTHY:
Mostly in India, many believe that if you have fruits during lunch, you have not eaten anything. Rice or chapati is a must. Wrong. Healthy food is never useless. Yes, it may not fill your stomach to the brim but it does keep you healthy. Some days, if your child is not in the mood to eat the dal or chicken curry and rice, let them eat a few pulpy fruits instead. You can probably give them an incentive to have along with their lunch sometimes, like cucumbers, tomatoes or red carrots. It also helps if you eat fruits and vegetables in front of them or better still, with them.
4. CHUBBY DOES NOT MEAN HEALTHY:
A chubby person does not mean he is bound to be healthy. Chubby may be cute when you’re small but as you grow older, it gradually slows you down. A chubby child only gets lazy, unhappy and obese. There are various reasons you turn out chubby, like wrong food or junk food and irregular meal timings. So, if you find your child getting chubby and lazy, stop right there and tweak a few habits. Your child will thank you for it later.
5. CHECK YOUR PRODUCTS:
Anything you give your child must be checked. For example, the fruit juices, the fruit curds, the vegetable juices, the milk products and so on. Let them consume products with the least amount of preservatives and sugar. Diet products are not always healthy so check them, too.
Like you, your child may also have a number of grievances and questions about various things. There is nothing more painful than having your parent neglect you and your emotions. Slow down, sit and open your ears to them. Look into their eyes and explain why you need them to do certain things. Tell them what the good and bad habits are. When you get your child to understand you, half your work is done. You can probably have an interesting conversation about the naughtiest child in their school over a bowl of grapes.
7. HUG YOUR CHILD:
Nutrient deficient or not, a sprinkle of hugs and a touch of love every day will surely fulfill what your mind is lacking and ditto, for your little ones too.
Following these steps for your child is important because children grow, but how they grow and what they become eventually, totally depends on you. So, do you want to be that mom who just lets their children grow or the one that is remembered for their parenting skills? You decide!