Our Children Are What We Eat

Our children’s eating problems are usually caused by ourselves.

A few days ago, accompanying a young mother in the upbringing of her children, she told me that she did not understand why her children were overweight. At some point in the conversation and trying not to make him feel like a lack of respect but something strong that made him aware, I had to tell him: Sweetheart, you are overweight too, why do you think your whole family has it?

She thought about it a bit and told me that it was a family matter, that they were “big boned”, that it was a “hormonal” issue and I listened to her until she had no more excuses and at the end she said: my family has about weight because we eat very badly and do not exercise at all. At that time we could start working on dietary changes.

Until as parents we accept that we have the responsibility to teach our families to eat correctly, we cannot make any real changes in the nutrition of our children.

Today, there are many countries in the world that face the problem of childhood obesity and very few have had good results to control or reduce the problem, since it is not a government responsibility but a family one.

Generally, children’s eating problems are actually our own problems and bad habits that we have developed and passed on to the next generation.

Medline Plus determines that obesity is characterized by the accumulation of fat in the body, this being unhealthy.

Food and nutrition are almost always linked to our childhood memories, good or bad, and many times we feed ourselves and our children subconsciously. Our behaviors related to eating are a response conditioned by something that happened in our past and that in the present we repeat it with our children.

Many of us were raised with phrases like:

  • You are a good girl, you ate everything!

  • Eat everything, many children wish they had that food

  • There is no dessert if you don’t finish your plate

  • one more bite and I’ll give you dessert

  • you can’t stop until you eat everything

Phrases like these shaped our character and unconsciously we believe that we are good if we eat everything, we feel guilty if we leave something on the plate, we eat when we feel sad or we always eat to celebrate, eating makes us feel good.

We should put these types of ideas aside and no longer transmit them to our children.

If your family has obesity or overweight problems at home, let me make some recommendations:

  • together with your husband, check who it is that promotes the consumption of junk food

  • identify who is buying sweets or snacks

  • talk about the feelings you experience when eating and become aware of it

  • set a family goal about food and physical activities

  • include fruits and vegetables in your diet

  • set a goal to stop or cut down on soda or candy

  • have breakfast daily

  • never use food as a reward or punishment

Think about this:

If we don’t put a stop to the poor diet of our children. We will be the first generation of parents to see their children die from cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and hypertension.

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