Limiting Snacks to Prevent Grazing

Limiting Snacks to Prevent Grazing

Getting toddlers to eat a healthy diet can be one of the most frustrating parts of parenting the little guys. Young kids tend to be picky eaters, which can make finding good snack choices an uphill battle.  If your children like to graze throughout the day, it can be even more difficult to make sure they are eating good foods.  Limiting those grazing opportunities will help you have more control over what they eat, ensuring a more balanced diet.

Frequent grazing is not necessarily a bad thing, unless the foods they choose are unhealthy.  Carrot sticks, nuts or raisins are all fantastic grazing choices, but cereals, crackers and other foods that are high in carbohydrates and low in nutrition may help set the foundation for poor eating habits and trouble with weight later on.

By limiting the choices your kids have, or limiting their ability to free range through the kitchen, you will be able to teach them healthy food choices and make sure they get adequate nutrients, while still allowing them to choose their own foods, to a degree.

Try stocking the lower shelf of the snack cupboard with choices like nuts, dried fruits, or even popcorn.  In the fridge, put carrot sticks, yogurt cups and sliced meats and cheese on the shelf they can reach.

These early years are the perfect opportunity to build a foundation of healthy eating habits, tasty and nutritious food choices, and a schedule of eating that promotes energy and health while inhibiting overeating and weight problems.