Dietary guidelines for a 4 year old? Please help!!!
I have a 4 year old stepson who I believe is not eating very healthy when at his mother's house. She is 150+ pounds overweight. My partner (the childs father) is not very fit either, so he's decided to teach his son what is healthy and what is not. The child is not currently over weight at all, he's VERY healthy. :) But my partners goal is to prevent him from becoming overweight by teaching him good eating habits now. He tells him that if he eats healthy he'll be happy and energetic like spiderman, but if not he'll be overweight and not happy. He also tells him that he (the father) is "a little bit fat" and explains how he doesn't like it. He gives his son the option almost at every meal to eat something that's "junk food" and something that's "healthy food". And pretty much every time he picks the healthy meal! :) We both see this as a good thing. But his mother does not, she says he is not at all at risk of becoming obese (because he's not currently overweight) and says it's wrong for us to teach him these habits because it will make him obsessed with his weight later in life.
I would love to have other opinions about this. I really just want to do what is right for the child! Sad
When I was growing up I had no idea what was healthy or not. I didn't until I moved out and started taking care of myself. As long as your not projecting guilt on the kid I think it's great. Knowledge is a powerful tool and the younger you get it the better off you'll be in this world. Many adults live with bad habits they learned as children and just don't know how to change. What your doing is called "Guidance" and it's great that your taking an intrest in his future wellbeing. Teach him as much as you can while he's still young enough to actualy listen to you. (When they become a teenager all they will hear you say is Blah Blah Blah I'm an idiot, don't listen to me Blah Blah)
Why all this discussion about food? Just serve him good healthy meals, no junk, and no excess sweets. The emphasis you are placing on his diet verbally may have the opposite effect by making him think about food all the time. Meal-time should be a happy occasion, not a lecture. Children learn by example. If you eat properly, and only good food is available, he will follow your lead. You suggest that your husband is overweight - this is not a good example. He should start with himself.
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