READER REPORT:

Helping kids eat healthy:Get them in the garden

AMANDA GREENWOOD
Last updated 12:00 31/01/2013

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Amanda Greenwood says getting kids involved in the garden is a great way to help them start eating healthier.

1. Plant strawberry plants, they send out shoots and multiply quickly. Encourage the children to snack from them. Other good choices are cherry tomatoes, perpetual spinach, pumpkins, and zucchini as they are all easy to grow. Involve the children in gardening.

2. Mini feijoas and cocktail kiwifruit can be eaten whole.

3. Encourage schools to plant fruit trees rather than ornamental trees and parents/community groups could help purchase and plant. Make fruit and vegetable gardening part of the school curriculum, in many areas there may be retired people who are keen gardeners who would be interested in volunteering.

4. If the junk food isn't in the house, they can't eat it! Keep lots of apples and carrots in the fridge and don't buy chips, etc.

5. Encourage the children to cook.

6. Reduce the amount of carbohydrates they eat. Cereal for breakfast, sandwiches or rolls for lunch and rice/pasta/potatoes at dinner can add up to a lot of carbs and if they aren't exercising a lot they don't need all that energy.

7. Give them water to drink and keep fizzy drinks for weekends/birthdays, etc.

8. Limit TV/computer time. Send them outside to play. Being bored can be good for the imagination. If they have something like balls/sandpit/bike/scooter they will always have something to do.


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