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2018-19 Eat Smart. Play Hard Magazine

2018-19 Magazine

2018-19 Eat Smart. Play Hard. Magazine

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Three Strategies for Healthy Living With Your Kids

For parents raising children today, a common concern is how to help children avoid the health risks associated with too much screen time and not enough physical activity. Fortunately, healthy living is something that you can model and encourage as you try to get in some daily parent time with your kids.

For parents raising children today, a common concern is how to help children avoid the health risks associated with too much screen time and not enough physical activity.

Fortunately, healthy living is something that you can model and encourage as you try to get in some daily parent time with your kids. Here are three strategies that you can use to encourage wellness with your children:

  • Enjoy active play or physical activity with your child every day. Just like the idea that “an apple a day” is good for you, an even better prescription is taking 30 minutes to connect with your children in some daily “dad time.” Seek to make dad time an activity time so that you play a game outside, do hide and seek inside or visit a family fitness center.
  • Eat at least one meal a day with your child and provide healthful eating options. Much research shows that eating at least one meal together daily promotes family connection and conversation, encourages healthy eating and helps increase child well-being. Focus on at least one dinner time daily where you slow down, connect and create a healthy climate in your home.
  • Schedule one “date” a week with your children to do something they like that will involve physical activity. Children enjoy  planning something fun when a parent will come along. Require that it be something active, and you may find yourself building a snowman, playing tag, learning yoga, going swimming or doing a nature hike. This weekly date time with your child can introduce a variety of healthful activity options into your time together.

Life is busy, but see if this simple recipe of dad time, dinner time and date time with your children can give a new boost to your efforts in healthy living with your kids.

 

Sean Brotherson, Ph.D., Extension Family Science Specialist and Professor

Department of Human Development and Family Science, NDSU

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