Understanding and appreciating the health benefits of water is important to learn as early as possible. Instilling these healthy habits in your children will help them grow well and have healthy minds and bodies. Getting your children to drink water, however, can be a great challenge.
Kids are influenced by the media, advertising, and movies. How often do you see people drinking water in television shows and how often is water advertised? Not often. Overcoming the influence of media for a parent is difficult. The best way to do it is to be honest with your children and explain the importance of health and water. Let them make the choice to drink water to help themselves!
It is also a challenge when children’s friends are drinking soda, juice, energy drinks, and workout drinks constantly. Your child will want to do this also. Again, at this point, they will make their own choices at school and at friends’ houses, but if you are able to help them understand the importance of water and the bad sugars and additives in juices and sodas, perhaps they will make the right decision.
In your own home, encouraging more water intake will be much easier. Make water available! Have it in a filter in the refrigerator that your kids can access at any time. You can even have a jug of fruit water, try mint leaves, oranges, cucumbers, lemons, or whatever you kids like. If they enjoy the way it tastes they are more likely to drink it!
To encourage them to drink water throughout the day, take your family on a shopping trip, specifically for water bottles. Let each child pick whatever kind they want, BPA free, of course, and they will be more apt to drink water from their personal water bottle. If your kids are crafty, you could purchase simple plain water bottles and have an evening where you all get together and decorate and personalize their water bottles. Once each child has their personal water bottle, make sure it is always around. If you’re about to go in the car, make sure they have their water bottles with them! If they’re going to a friend’s house, pack them their water bottle.
Another way to make water fun is by making fruit cubes! In your ice tray, add blueberries, raspberries, or sliced strawberries to your water. Let the water freeze. Then you’ll have colorful ice cubes to add to your water beverage. It will make the water more fun for kids to drink.
To avoid the intake of sugary beverages, simply don’t buy them. Don’t buy fruit juices, sodas, energy drinks, or fitness beverages. If they are not in the house, your kids won’t constantly crave them and neither will you! It’s a win-win.