Talking to children about food gives you insight on a child’s eating habits and how parents are enforcing positive eating habits on their child. You can create a questionnaire that asks children about their eating habits, choices and preferences, giving you an opportunity to support those eating options or provide new and healthier suggestions to improve a child’s health.
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Family meals offer significant benefits to a child’s eating habits, increasing the range of food groups offered to children, their exposure to fruits and vegetables and can allow kids to become involved in the planning for meals. Include a section on your questionnaire that asks kids how many days, during an average week, they sit down together with their family to eat a meal. Ask them if they have an opportunity to contribute to meal planning and if so, what suggestions do they normally make. Additionally, you can ask them to describe a normal meal to get an idea of the kinds of foods they generally eat at their family meals.
Fast food does not have to be as unhealthy as it once was if customers are careful in their quantity and selection. Include a section on your questionnaire regarding the child’s exposure to fast food and her choices when she does eat fast food. Ask childen where they usually go for their fast food and the specific things they eat. Question them about why they like that restaurant over another option and also ask them how much food they eat when they eat at a fast food restaurant.
Snack food options are essential to a growing child, and much like fast food choices, they can be healthy or unhealthy -- depending on the quantity and specific food they choose. Determine if a child makes good snack choices, or has good snack choices made for him, by asking him what foods he generally eats during snack times. Ask him if he has snack foods available to him around the clock or if he has to wait for specific times to eat his snacks.
Children make food choices based on personal likes and dislikes instead of on the specific advantages of one food over another. Determine if the child has healthy preferences when it comes to her daily eating by asking her to name her favourite foods. Prepare other questions that ask children about their taste choices between healthy and semi-healthy food options. Try to discern if the child has healthy food preferences that you may not be aware of, allowing you to replace other unhealthy choices with more healthy selections while accommodating a child’s tastes.
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