Thank you for Rosa Hemming for the following guest post:
When it comes to forming healthy lifestyle habits, a well-balanced diet and a reasonable amount of daily activities are key. Teaching kids to keep their body and mind in good shape is vital, as good practices adopted in childhood pave the way for long, healthy life.
A delicate balance between the amounts of energy consumed and spent during the day isn’t difficult to accomplish, but it takes some research. Even though every child is different and all the instructions are there as a rule of thumb, a lot can be learned from nutrition specialists and dietitians experienced in creating meal plans for all ages.
How much energy do children actually have?
Whether your kid is a couch potato or can never seem to sit still, the truth is that they have an enormous energy potential.
A recent study confirmed that the metabolism of prepubescent children is comparable to the one of highly trained athletes, concluding that “the post-exercise recovery kinetics of oxygen uptake and HR were respectively similar and faster in prepubertal children than well-trained adult endurance athletes.” In short, the study has shown that kids inherently have more energy for physical activities and recover from exercise faster than most adults.
Having these conclusions in mind, we would expect to see all of the children running around for hours. Yet, the fact remains that some kids seem to enjoy reading, watching movies, listening to music, or engaging in other activities more than spending time outside. Although it’s important to respect their preferences, encouraging children to spend time outdoors is equally significant for their health.
Creating a balanced, healthy diet for your child
A growing child, being mentally and physically active every day, needs a proper amount of calories to stay energetic and healthy. However, it’s often challenging to find the right measure: some children make no fuss about their meals, while others prefer specific foods and tend to eat more of them than they really need to.
The right calorie intake for your child depends on several factors, including their age, gender, and activity levels. The younger and the more sedentary a child is, the fewer calories they need, and vice versa.
What is considered a healthy, balanced daily diet for children should include portions of various fruits and vegetables, milk and other dairy products, foods that are great sources of protein and healthy fats, as well as some meals based on starchy foods. Sugar intake is something to keep an eye on since children don’t benefit from significant amounts of sweets, cookies, biscuits, and sugary fizzy drinks.
Since most children spend time at home nowadays, attending online classes and missing out on sports and other group activities, minding your kid’s meals becomes even more important. As children don’t tire out as much as they did before, they’ll need meals with fewer calories for the time being.
The right amount of sleep for a prepubescent child
Getting the rest we need at night can make it or break it for adults, and children are no different in this regard. Although many parents frown upon seeing their children sleep for long, studies have linked shorter sleep with higher weight in children, showing that if a child doesn’t rest properly during the night, they’re likely to compensate for this lack of rest with higher calorie intake the next day.
The right amount of sleep depends on a child’s age and activity levels, but some approximate recommendations state that toddlers (1 to 2-year-olds) need about 11 to 14 hours of sleep a day, children of age 3 to 5 should get 11 to 13 hours of rest at night, while kids of age 6 to 13 need 9 to 11 hours of shuteye.
Keeping track of your child’s energy levels
A healthy child is eating, sleeping, and exercising enough, but defining the proper amounts of calories, rest, and outdoor time can be a tricky task. Observe your kids and talk to them about their needs, while also consulting recommendations issued by health specialists, and you’re sure to be on the right track.
Habits formed in childhood can last a lifetime, so be attentive when it comes to legacies you leave for your children.
Author Bio: Rosa Hemming is a blogger and essay writing service professional from the United States, passionate about movies and serials. Rosa is one of the best professional essay writers online who’s also managing her own blog, consisting of lists of the best films divided by genre and for different moods. To learn more about Rosa, find her on Twitter.