Good eating habits are vital to being healthy throughout your life. Teaching your kids about the importance of nutrition from an early age can help them develop good habits that will last a lifetime. This can include reading food labels such as the Health Star Rating and the Nutrition Information Panel on packaged foods. To ensure your good advice sinks in, make it easy to remember and fun to do!
Involving your kids can be as simple as shopping for ingredients for their favourite meal. With so many products available, it can be daunting trying to decide what to buy. This is where the Health Stars can help. The stars have appeared on more than 15,200 products. That means your kids can ‘star hunt’ for the healthier option in the packaged food sections when shopping.
It’s important to teach your kids to only compare similar packaged products. So if you are in the bread section, ask them to find the best Health Star rated bread. If you are in the yoghurt section, look for the best Health Star rated yoghurt. Hopefully by making it entertaining and fun, shopping with kids will be a bit easier when they have a ‘task’ to do.
Some other important tips to teach your kids about nutrition and health include:
- Eat from a variety of food groups - eating from the five food groups is key to healthy eating. Check that your serving portions are right on the Eat for Health website.
- Eat a rainbow of fruit and vegetables - different coloured fruits and vegetables have different nutrients and health benefits.
- Store food safely - store raw foods below cooked foods, always use airtight containers, and check the use-by dates on products.
- Exercise - regular exercise has many benefits for both mental and physical health. The 24 Hour Movement Guidelines recommend how many minutes are needed each day for different age groups.
- Drink plenty of water - water is the best friend they never knew they had!