Why What You Eat Matters in Your Child’s Recovery

Aug 11, 2021

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Why What You Eat Matters in Your Child’s Recovery

By following the same principles you are expecting your child to follow in regards to food, you are sending the message that they are important.  In particular the principles of keeping a consistent eating pattern, eating balanced meals with all of the food groups, making planning and preparing food a priority for more than just them, and trying new foods or challenging your food preferences.  The impact of modeling healthy eating behaviors is incredibly valuable. Your child needs to understand that what they are being expected to eat is healthy not only for them, but for everyone.

If you are on a diet, it’s important to reflect on why, and consider what messages that sends your child.  Diets are a form of disordered eating.  They are restrictive, and the primary goal is weight loss.  This sends the message that disordered eating is ok and that weight loss is more important than health. Anything achieved by unhealthy means cannot be healthy.  It might be easier to think of it this way… if you and your child smoked and you wanted them to quit.  Would you smoke around them?

If you are someone who has a health condition that could be improved by weight loss (such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, hypertension) then it is important to focus on making healthy lifestyle choices and improving your health parameters rather than focusing on your weight.  Your weight is not the problem, it is the result of behaviors. So rather, address the real problem which is the behaviors and therefore, following the same principles as your child is what’s best for you as well.

Written by Krista Godfrey, MS, RD, LMNT

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