Sugar is essential for energy and growth, but many kids have a sweet tooth that takes daily sugar consumption to unhealthy levels. However, it can be difficult to understand how to reduce the amount of sugar that your child consumes every day in a healthy way without causing World War III. Following are a few tips that will help you to reduce your child’s sugar intake without the explosion.
Carefully Select the Food You Purchase
Bringing cookies and donuts into the home and then forbidding or limiting their consumption can cause feelings of resentment and encourage your child to sneak the foods. Instead, buy more wholesome “snacky” foods like air-popped popcorn, apples, grapes, and crackers. Read labels to make sure that the foods are actually as healthy as you think they are, because added sugar hides in many snack foods.
Serve Mostly Water
Many parents inadvertently let their kids guzzle sugar in the form of beverages, even while limiting sugary foods. Juices, fruit punches, energy drinks, and soda can contain more sugar than small children are meant to consume in an entire day. To avoid this, children should to served mainly water. If serving healthy, 100 percent juice, adding a little water can also help to reduce the sugar content while allowing them to receive the healthy nutrients.
Establish Dessert Time
All the time is dessert time in most kids’ minds, so establishing a certain time of day for dessert may help you to both limit their sugar intake and stop them from bothering you about snacks all day. If kids know that they can expect dessert to come after dinner and only after dinner, they will eventually let up. This will make it easier to control what they get and how much.