A healthy lifestyle begins with a proper diet. Healthy eating is important for the proper formation of bones, teeth, muscle and a healthy heart. Diet can affect growth and development in small children as well as teens. Childhood obesity is on the rise, and by promoting a healthy diet, children can maintain a healthy weight and stay healthy as they grow into young adults.
A study done by the Children's Nutrition Research Center suggests that a lack of calcium can result in low bone strength. Weak bone strength and low levels of calcium can lead to osteoporosis in later years (see Resources).
A lack of iron can have serious effects on a child's body. Iron deficiency can lead to being constantly tired or weak, irritable, lack an appetite and more.
Breakfast is a great way to start the day for a child. Most cereals are bolstered with extra vitamins and minerals for a well-balanced meal. Kids who eat breakfast have more energy and do better in school.
Certain foods believed to be bad for you are actually good. The potato is rich in fibre, high in vitamin C and only has about 110 calories (see Resources).
Vegetables contain important nutrients known as antioxidants. Dr. C.Y. Lee of Cornell University did a study of red cabbage and found that cabbages were very high in antioxidants. This can reduce the risk of cancer (see Resources).
Healthy foods can be fun foods, too. Flavoured milks are just as healthy as white milk, and contain calcium, magnesium, vitamin D and potassium. Homemade pizza can include veggies, cheese, and healthy meat like chicken or turkey. Flavoured yoghurts make great dipping sauces.