A kids diet plan is the need of the hour today in the United States, as most children are getting obese. Obesity poses health risks in the future. This can be prevented by following a healthy kids diet plan right from the start. This diet plan encourages healthy eating habits and limits the intake of calorie-rich foods. Children also need to stay physically active, have less screen time, and get ample sleep.
A proper kids diet plan for weight reduction should be given by a health nutritionist only. No one should give their children a diet plan by referring to plans or diet charts online. It could lead to serious repercussions and a growth halt. But there are certain healthy tricks and tips you should adhere to prevent unnecessary weight gain. Children who are overweight should reduce the rate of weight increase by following a normal diet chart and plenty of exercises.
Tips for a Healthy Kids Diet Plan
- Eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole-grain products instead of sugar loaded or deep-fried food items.
- Eat more of low-fat or non-fat milk products such as cheese and yogurt.
- Eat more of lean meat than white meat.
- Eat more of fish, lentils, poultry and beans.
- Limit intake of sugary drinks.
- Reduce intake of sugar and saturated fat.
Reduce Intake Of Calorie-Rich Food Items
Calorie-rich food items such as those rich in fat or sugar are the favorite of children. But for children who are obese, such food items should be restricted or reduced at a very early age. You should make these items less available at home. You can allow your kids to eat these items rarely, so that they consider the importance of these items and understand that they are not healthy. Instead, you should encourage them to eat –
- A cup of bell peppers, broccoli, carrots or zucchini with 2 tablespoons of hummus.
- A banana or an apple
- A cup of grapes or blueberries
- A cup of tuna wrapped in a lettuce or cabbage leaf.
- Some home-baked kale or spinach chips.
These should be ideal snacking options for children rather than reaching out for a packet of deep-fried chips or sugar-loaded chocolates.
Help Kids Stay Active
Encourage your children to indulge in more physical play such as running games or other such physical games. These have many benefits on the body such as –
- strengthens their bones and muscles
- Decreases blood pressure
- Reduces anxiety
- Increases stamina
- Helps them loose excess weight
- Makes them stronger and confident
Children aged between 3 to 5 should be kept active all day long, while children aged between 6 to 17 years should be physically active for at least 60 minutes in a day. Physical activities such as aerobic activities can also make such kids’ hearts beat faster and hence help with weight management. You should also include bone-strengthening activities such as running, jogging, climbing a ladder, cycling, jumping rope, etc.
Reduce Sedentary Time
Kids spending too much time reading a book, in front of the computer, on the iPad or phone are not using their muscles, but only their brains. You should ensure that they are allowed such activities for no more than 2 hours in a day. The American Academy of Pediatrics does not allow children aged below 2 years to watch TV at all.
Reduce Adequate Sleep
If children sleep too little, it will directly lead to obesity. Inadequate sleep makes anyone eat more and stay less physically active as the body is tired. Children also need more sleep than adults and so, apart from a healthy kids’ diet plan, also encourage them to get at least 9 hours of sleep every day.