MILWAUKEE -- It's hard enough to keep our own health in check during the holidays -- let alone our kids. With al ong break and less structured schedule, healthy habits often get sidelined. Katie Horrigan with Mission Healthy Kids joins Real Milwaukee to help.
Focus on fun rather than food:
Make memories for your children that will last for a lifetime but that won`t instill habits that detract from good
health. Create non-food holiday traditions for your family — like decorating, making holiday crafts or visiting
a festive light display. If you focus more on fun, it`s easier to focus less on food.
Plan out healthy snacks:
Stock up on fruit, vegetables, string cheese and yogurt for easy, healthy snacks. Plan to give kids a snack
whenever meals are more than four hours apart.
Try seasonal fruits and vegetables:
This time of year, there are some different holiday fruits and veggies for your kids to try. Make it fun by
introducing pomegranates, clementines, star fruit, dried fruits, squash, Brussels sprouts and more.
Talk about trade-offs and moderation:
Don`t cut sweet treats out entirely; but do limit them. Talk about saving sweets for special times during the
holidays, and enlist your kids in keeping track of what they have eaten to help them be mindful.
Keep active with your kids to burn off those extra holiday calories and stay fit. When weather permits, go for
a walk or to the park. Even short, 10-minute fitness breaks make a difference.
Stay on schedule when possible:
Try to serve small, healthy meals at the regular time each day regardless of your party schedule. Then,
when you go to a party, you and your kids won`t feel starving, which can lead to overeating. Make sure kids
get enough sleep and avoid late nights that throw younger kids off of their regular schedule.
Celebrate; don't stress:
When it really is party time, relax a little. Enjoy the foods that make the season special. If your child has
generally been eating well all year long, a few splurges along the way are okay.