Healthy Heart Kids
Healthy hearts tick for a very long time. Keeping your ticker healthy should be the goal of everyone because having a healthy heart leads to healthy living and better quality of life. Before understanding what makes a heart healthy, you should first understand its specific functions in your body.
As you may or may not know, the heart is the muscle at the center of the cardiovascular system. The cardiovascular system is the system that circulates blood around the body. Your heart sends blood (providing oxygen and nutrients) around your body, and it carries away waste deposits (like carbon dioxide, which is later expelled when you exhale) from various organs and parts of your body. It takes the heart less than a minute to pump blood to every cell you have. This is an important function because it keeps all your systems working correctly by keeping your cells alive with oxygen.
Being born with a healthy heart (meaning no complications) is a blessing, and one you should take care of in yourself and in your child. Following the lines of children and nutrition, having healthy heart kids is your personal assurance that your children will have less to worry about for the rest of their lives.
Promote having and maintaining a healthy heart by following a healthy heart diet and lifestyle, which is a diet that not only maintains a healthy heart, but also provides the calorie count, vitamins and minerals your children will need to keep themselves healthy heart kids.
Following a healthy heart diet is easy; and easiest when you start early. Try to breast feed your child till about 6-12 months after their birth. You can begin giving your child 100% juice at 6 months old, but nothing more than 4 oz a day.
Once a child gets older, the first step is to eat a lot of fruit and vegetables. Serve fruit as part of your child’s breakfast, and offer fruit as a dessert option for lunch and dinner instead of chocolate and candy. In the same manner, make sure your child always has a serving of vegetables to go with lunch and dinner.
Try not to serve foods with saturated or trans fat. You will know whether or not a food product contains this by reading the label on the back. Many children snacks do have saturated and trans fat, so look for alternative and healthy snack options and recipes. Fat should only be 30% of a young child’s diet, and this continues on to their teenage years. Get your child’s fat requirements from fish, low-fat dairy products, and vegetable oils.
In the realm of protein, go for lean meats, nuts, and beans. There are many options available as protein sources, and fatty meats and deep fried fish or meats should be at the bottom of the list. When it comes to grains, make half of your options whole grain. Try eating brown rice, whole wheat bread, and whole wheat pasta as alternatives. Also get your child to drink juice or a lot of water instead of carbonated or soda drinks
Keep in mind not to force your young children to eat. Children have a natural system of knowing when their body has had enough calories for the day. As a parent you’ll have to recognize whether they don’t want to eat because they don’t like the food, or they don’t want to eat because they aren’t hungry. If your child doesn’t want to eat because s/he isn’t hungry, offer an alternative like milk or juice, just so they don’t wake up hungry in the middle of the night, and let them be. Forcing a child to eat is one of the worst things you can do.
To promote a healthy heart, kids should try to be physically active for at least half an hour to an hour a day. This keeps the heart strong as a muscle and more efficient in doing its job.
Learn More About How to Keep Your Children Healthy and Protect Them from Illnesses!