6 Ways to Keep Your Kids Healthy Throughout the Year
A parent’s top priority is making sure their kids are happy, healthy and set up for success. Here are 6 ways to help your children establish healthy habits.
1. Promote Healthy Food Choices
Food preferences are developed as early as infancy so even babies need a variety of tastes in their foods. Follow a “rainbow diet” by giving your kids a colorful variety of fruits and vegetables to get the nutrients and fiber they need. While the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables can vary for children based on their age, MyPlate recommends making half of each plate fruits and vegetables.
Most kids need at least 3 meals per day plus snacks. Not only are fruits and veggies important for health, it’s also important to feed your child a variety of foods including whole grains, protein and low fat dairy.
If you have questions or concerns about your child getting adequate nutrition, talk to your pediatrician or healthcare provider.
2. Establish Consistent Routines
Whether during the school year, summer break, or on a vacation, ensuring your child has a sense of routine helps provide stability and wellbeing. Eating routines can help them get the nutrients they need. Sleep routines help set their internal clock and get them used to going to bed and waking around the same time. Activity routines can help set kids up for healthy minds and bodies.
3. Get Active & Have Fun
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends toddlers should be active for 3 or more hours daily while elementary and middle school students need 60 minutes of daily physical activity most days of the week. Making physical activity fun can help build healthy habits early. Sports, playing outdoors, dancing, or even just running around helps to get kids moving. As a bonus, an active lifestyle can also help them sleep better, relieves stress, and supports their immune health.
4. Bring On the Sandman – Promote a Quality Sleep
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends children 3-5 years old should sleep 10-13 hours per day, including naps while children ages 6-12 should aim for 9-12 hours of sleep each night. Keeping a consistent, calming bedtime routine helps them get the necessary rest they need. Some ways to help children fall and stay asleep include:
- Staying away from electronic screens 2 hours before bed
- Relaxing or quiet playing in a dim, quiet space before going to bed
- Reading a book in a rocking chair
- Using a white noise or sound machine for soothing sounds
- Using calming scents before bed like lavender, chamomile or vanilla
- Taking a warm bath
- Placing blankets in a dryer right before bedtime so they are extra cozy
5. Drink Up and Hydrate with Water
Kids (and adults!) need to stay hydrated. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends:
- Children ages 1-3 years drink 4 cups of beverages per day, including water or milk
- Children 4-8 years old drink 5 cups
- Older children drink 7-8 cups
This is especially important during summer months or when being active. For a fun and delicious twist, try adding lemons slices or mint to water. Ice cubes with frozen fruit also make a fun treat and can help children enjoy drinking water.
6. Vitamins and Supplements
A well-balanced, healthy diet should provide all of the vitamins and minerals children need. If you have a picky eater or just aren’t sure your child is getting what they need from food, talk to your healthcare provider to see if your child could benefit from taking a multivitamin, such as L’il Critters Gummy Vites, or another supplement. Below are some supplements that can be help fill your child’s nutritional gaps:
Your kid not a fish fan? Try L’il Critters Omega-3 Gummy Fish Vitamins! L’il Critters Omega-3 gummy vitamins offer a convenient and delicious way for kids to supplement their diet with Omega-3 fish oil. Omega-3 fatty acids play an important role in their overall health, and is a nutrient found in the brain and eyes.*
Be Pro-Probiotic! Our GI tract has their own community of good bacteria called a microbiome. Taking a probiotic provides kids with the good kind of bacteria to support digestive health.* L’il Critters Probiotic is infused with delicious fruit flavors and includes both prebiotics and probiotics to support your little one’s digestive system.*
Daily immune support. L'il Critters Immune C Plus Zinc and Vitamin D provides immune support* with a great taste kids want in a fun gummy bear shape they love. Best of all, L'il Critters™ Immune C™ gives your child the nutrients they need without anything extra – because what’s in our gummies is as important as what’s not!
Great Job, Parents!
Following the tips above helps to build a solid foundation for kids’ overall health and well-being. It’s never too soon to start. You’ve got this!
* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.