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It's Your Turn: Be a Good Role Model for Eating and Activity

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Whether you are a parent, grandparent, neighbor or teacher, you can be a role model for eating good foods and being active. Children of all ages see what adults are doing and it does make a difference in what they choose. Here are some tips from ChooseMyPlate.gov on how to be a positive role model for eating good foods and being active.

  • Show by example. Eat vegetables, fruits, and whole grains with meals or as snacks. Tell children how much you like to eat these foods. Limit your intake of less healthy foods. 
  • Try new foods yourself. Describe its taste, texture, and smell. Offer one new food at a time. Serve something your child likes along with the new food. Offer new foods at the beginning of a meal, when your child is very hungry. Avoid lecturing or forcing your child to eat. Let children see you try new foods. Better yet, find a new food at the grocery store and have the whole family try it!

  • Avoid using food as a reward. If you or someone in your family does something good, avoid using food as a reward. For example, if your child helps you with extra chores around the house, consider letting him choose a game for the family to play, a later bedtime, or a spending time at the pool.
  • Allow no more than 2 hours a day of screen time like TV and computer games. This is for adults, too. How much time do you spend watching TV, working on the computer, or checking your smartphone or tablet? Get up and move. Better yet, move together as a family. 
  • Make physical activity fun for the whole family. Involve your children in the planning. Walk, run, and play with your child instead of sitting on the sidelines. Set an example by being physically active and using safety gear, like bike helmets.

Remember, children of all ages are watching what you do. So eat healthy and be active!

Goal for this Month

  • Find one or two ways to be a good role model for healthy food choices.
  • Find one or two ways to be a good role model for being active.

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