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Updated 15 October 2015

Teach your kids good eating habits

Adopting a healthy lifestyle is very important and moms have a huge responsibility in imparting good eating habits to their children, says Weigh-Less chairperson Mary Holroyd.

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For over 37 years Weigh-Less has helped mothers all over South Africa rediscover themselves - pre-pregnancy, during pregnancy and of course, post-pregnancy. They have had a direct influence in the lives and homes of three generations - something that they are particularly proud of and hold in high esteem.

They have spearheaded the ‘yummy mummy’ movement by empowering mothers with the correct knowledge and understanding of not only how to get their bodies back, but also, how to implement healthy eating in their homes.

In fact, Weigh-Less, has healthy eating plans especially designed for pregnant and lactating mothers which include four formulae each. Each formula can be adjusted according to various criteria in order to be certain that these mums stay healthy during a time where the demands on their bodies are increased. Both programmes include a variety of foods from each food group to ensure optimal vitamin and mineral intake.

Founder and chairperson of Weigh-Less, Mary Holroyd says “Without even realising it, these same moms have inadvertently left a new legacy for their children - the legacy of a healthy lifestyle. Try as you may, you will not find a legacy more powerful than this.”

Furthermore, Holroyd emphasises the importance of imparting a healthy lifestyle and eating habits to your children. “The choices you make today live with you tomorrow. You are not only in charge of your health and your body, but your family’s too. A huge responsibility – yes - but it is one that God has given you and the rewards that come with that are endless.”

Encouraging longevity

Mother of two and Goal Weight member, Lindiwe Mvubu who lost 23.5kgs in 18 months on the Weigh-Less eating plan shares how changing her lifestyle and losing weight influenced her family. "When my daughter told me how happy she was that she can now put both her arms around me, my heart swelled. I know that she has learnt from my experiences and has even begun eating her vegetables with me having to beg. She can see how eating vegetables has made her mother not only healthy, but beautiful.”

Holroyd adds that healthy eating and adopting a healthy lifestyle is also important because it:

  • Encourages longevity – a balanced diet is known to combat the aging process. You are also likely to live a longer, healthy life.
  • Improve quality of life – eating healthily creates less chance of being susceptible to sickness and disease.
  • Enhance Energy - healthy eating is the simplest way to increase metabolism and boost energy.
  • Develops Self Esteem – when you start making healthier food choices, you not only look good, but feel good.
  • Influences others – Your children will hopefully mirror and implement the healthy eating principles that you exercise – something they will carry into adulthood.

In celebration of Mother’s Day, Weigh-Less provides the following tips on how mom’s around the country can bring health into their homes:

  • Show your children how to make healthy choices when snacking or on the run. For example, ensure that the fruit bowl is always full and accessible.
  • Doing work in the garden, walking the dog and helping with the household chores are good ways to keep the children active while also teaching them some valuable life lessons.
  • Eat more meals with your child, so that they can learn by copying you.
  • Offer two courses at meals: one savoury course followed by a yogurt or a fruit. This gives two opportunities for your child to take in the nutrients needed, and offers a wider variety of foods.
  • Offer finger foods (like chopped up raw vegetables and fruit) as often as possible.

By making these small changes mothers around Southern Africa will not only be adding years to their own lives, but will inspire their children to realise their dreams too, as it takes commitment, self motivation, focus and dedication, all key tools your children will need to apply in their lives. As the saying goes, lead by example, this is the perfect way to display your love and care for your precious little ones, teaching them that eating responsibly plays a major part in their development and that food is to be enjoyed and not used as an emotional tool.


Read more:

Nutrition basics in a nutshell
Keeping kids active

 
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