Nutrition and Hydration Week
13 March 2018
This week is Nutrition and Hydration Week. The week aims to highlight and promote adapting our diet and lifestyle to be healthier, happier, and more energised. With childhood obesity at an all-time high, it’s more important now than ever to ensure you and your family are living the healthiest lifestyle you can.
Children with obesity are at higher risk of having other chronic health conditions and diseases that influence physical health. These include asthma, sleep apnea, bone and joint problems, type 2 diabetes, and risk factors for heart disease.
Drastically changing your diet can be incredibly hard, that’s why the best way to achieve a healthier lifestyle is often by making small changes and increasing these with time.
A healthier lifestyle is more than just what we eat, it’s how we exercise, how we spend our time, and how much sleep we get. Below are 7 easy steps to achieving a healthier lifestyle.
1. Stop Weekly Take-Away Meals
It’s so easy to get to the end of the week and order a takeaway instead of cooking. A takeaway every so often, such as once a month can be ok. However, having one every week can have a drastic effect on your diet. Recent studies have found that a Chinese Takeaway has more salt content than 5 big macs, a level close to being toxic which can lead to heart attacks and strokes.
2. Replace an Unhealthy Snack with Fruit
Swapping chocolate, crisps, and sweets with fruit not only reduces your salt and fat intake but it means you take one step closer to achieving your 5 a day. It also saves you money. The average bag of crisps costs £0.60 whilst a banana will average at around £0.07, not only is the swap better for your health but for your wallet too.
3. Vitamins and Supplements
Vitamins and supplements are particularly important for children. As well as helping build their immune system it can strengthen bone growth. Vitamin D and Calcium should be the main extras you give your child as they should be receiving all other vitamins through their diet.
4. Drink More Water
It can be hard to track whether you’re staying hydrated enough – buying a large water bottle and consciously making sure you drink the whole bottle and more throughout the day is one of the best ways to start. The same applies to your child, send them to school with a water bottle and ensure they have drunk all of it by the time you collect them at the end of the day.
5. Stop Your Child Drinking Energy Drinks
Many people are unaware of just how dangerous energy drinks are to adults, but they’re even more damaging to children. Many stores have now placed an age limit of 16+ on the sale of energy drinks. Not only are they damaging to teeth, but they can cause liver and heart problems.
6. Get Enough Sleep
The recommended hours of sleep for an adult is seven to eight hours, a toddler needs 10-14 and school-age children should get 10 to 11 hours sleep per night. Sleep is vital to your development and wellbeing so always aim to achieve the maximum hours of sleep per night.
7. Cut Down on Processed Foods
With life getting busier and busier it’s so easy to resort to microwavable meals. However, for less money, there are plenty of recipes that can allow you and your family to eat a well-balanced meal and many can take less than 15 minutes! Keep checking back to see some of our recipes suggestions later this week!