Healthy eating is important for a number of reasons. One must eat healthily to stay energetic, to feel and look good, and to avoid disease, and this should begin at a young age.
Getting children to eat healthily, however, may be easier said than done, as the astonishing childhood obesity statistics tell us. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, childhood obesity is the result of eating too many calories and not getting enough physical activity. Ways to remedy and/or prevent this are simple enough, but might not always be easy to adhere to. From pushups to just going for a brisk walk, exercise can easily be done in one’s spare time.
Where parents and children might be at odds, however, is diet. It may be difficult to convince young people of the tremendous importance of eating right, but you can help them realize this by doing things like keeping sugary foods to once a day at the most (including soda, desserts, and other sugary foods), and on those special occasions, substituting naturally sweet flavoring such as xylitol, stevia, maple syrup and honey for sugar, Splenda, high fructose corn syrup, and other artificial sweeteners. The younger you teach kids, the easier it is for them to enjoy less harmful (but still sweet) things, like a handful of dried fruit or an apple.
It really can be done. I am sixteen years old, and for about a decade of that time, I was vegan and sugar-free, except for fruit and the occasional naturally sweetened dessert. Sure, I wanted to break the only diet I’d known and eat what everyone else was eating, but 99% of the time, I held myself back, and guess what? I’ve developed an incredibly strong immune system as a result, and I can hardly remember the last time I got truly sick, and I had perfect attendance all through grade school and middle school.
To recap, it won’t be easy, but believe me, if you keep your children’s sugar intake to a bare minimum and encourage them to exercise on a regular basis, they will most likely live longer, and be happier with the way they look and feel.