What is a good way to help children limit their calorie intake with out putting them on a diet? My kids love juice but it has so many calories!

It is good to monitor how many calories your kids are eating. Childhood obesity is becoming a big problem nowadays. Unfortunately, statistics show that approximately 70% of overweight children grow up to become overweight adults. But, I am a firm believer that adults should be careful about using the word “diet” around kids. I urge parents and adults to avoid complaining about their own weight to children, as kids may begin to associate being overweight to being “less of a person” or “ugly” or “unworthy”. I suggest instead that you talk to your kids about “healthy eating and exercise habits”. Focus on the positive aspects of eating and discuss healthy options for food selection. Sit down with your kids and make a grocery list; try to limit some “junk” food choices (potato chips, doughnuts, candy, chocolate) and get kids excited about trying healthier (possibly lower calorie) snacks. Start their day out right with a healthy breakfast (oatmeal, whole grain toast with peanut butter, whole grain cereal). Discuss good lunch options; either one that you can pack for them (turkey sandwich on whole grain bread with an apple or yogurt, fruit cups, string cheese) or talk about a healthy choice that they may purchase at school. Provide a nutrient dense after school snack (hummus and crackers, peanut butter on celery, a yogurt fruit smoothie) that they can have before a good homemade dinner. When it comes to fruit juice I simply urge caution to parents. Fruit juice that is 100% can provide a lot of great vitamins and minerals. However, I urge caution when it comes to consumption of liquid calories. If you suspect that your child is getting enough calories throughout the day, offer a lower sugar juice selection like Healthy Balance juice. It contains less than 30 calories per serving and is low in sugar!

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