Parents will search everywhere looking for the right answers to help their kids lose weight. Many parents come to us tired of fighting with their kids about food and healthy eating. Here are some common issues that we see at Healthy Steps Nutrition with our kids.
Drinking Their Calories Instead of Eating Them
Many of the drinks that kids consume are loaded with empty calories and sugar. Let’s take juice for example; the standard apple juice has 28 grams of sugar and zero grams of fiber compared to an apple containing 16 grams of sugar and 5 grams of fiber. Many of the fruit drinks made for kids are loaded with even more sugar. Other drinks children like to consume such as sodas, milkshakes and sports drinks can have upwards of 15+ teaspoons of sugar per can/bootle. Your child needs fiber to help them stay full. Liquids are digested and absorbed rapidly in the body which means they aren’t going to be satisfied with just liquids and tend to eat/crave more.
**Try switching to water instead of juice and focus on real food!
2. Lack of a Balanced Diet
Snack foods targeted to kids are high in carbohydrates and fat and low in protein. This combination makes them very calorie dense and not very satisfying. Remember, every time your child eats (meals or snacks), they should eat a combination protein and carbohydrates.
Here are some examples:
Breakfast: eggs and oatmeal or toast
Snacks: cheese stick and an apple or hummus with crackers or apple with nut butter
Lunch: sandwich with a piece of fruit, veggies and water
3. Little to No Physical Activity
What does your child do when they get home from school? Too many times, I find with the kids that I work with, they get home from school and sit in front of a screen (TV or computer). Encourage your child to engage in physical activity, even if it is just 30 minutes of moving around before watching TV. Encourage him to get up and move during the commercial breaks.
4. They Are Tired of Being Watched by the Food Police
Children don’t want to be told by their parents that they can’t have something to eat, especially when their siblings are eating it right next to them. It is very helpful for your child’s success that everyone be on the same page at home. This will make the transition to healthy eating much easier. We see great results at HSN because you are letting a neutral party help your child realize what is healthy for them to eat. We don’t focus on weight, we focus on healthy habits and lifestyle changes. All of our programs are designed with the child’s help so they feel ownership in the program and want to succeed.
Here’s what one of our parents said:
Meet Ari, he’s a 7 year old boy that has lost 4 pant sizes since October!
“My son Ari is 7 years old and has struggled with his weight since he was born. We have been to multiple nutritionists and never been able to get his eating, and activity levels under control until meeting with Nicole! Not only did she engage him in this process but she created a functional meal plan as well as an achievable exercise plan. Since we started working with Healthy Steps in the middle of October he has lost 13 pounds! It has not always been easy, there have been many frustrating moments for both Ari and myself, but with support from all of our family and most importantly Ari’s hard work he is accomplishing his goals. Thank you Nicole!”
– Layne, Ari’s Mom