Every dad gains deep satisfaction seeing his children grow, develop and learn. We also take special pride in seeing children succeed and overcome challenges. It’s one of the most rewarding parts of being a dad.

But often in our desire for seeing our children succeed, we often neglect the most important factor in helping them get there – modelling the right things ourselves.

Be honest, dad, is there something you see in your children that you wish might be different? If so, the first place to look is in the mirror.

This week’s Facts For Fathers, Good Choices Healthy Life is a great starting point to take action towards helping kids have a healthy and successful life.

Fathers can help their children have a healthy lifestyle by modelling and teaching their children to look after their body through eating well and exercise.

Some benefits of having a healthy lifestyle:

    • Children have more energy to meet the demands of their activities.
    • It is easier to keep their weight under control. Children are less likely to struggle with obesity.
    • It creates good habits and discipline early on that pay off later in life.
    • Lower blood pressure.
    • Lower risk of diabetes.
    • Stronger immune system to fight off sickness and disease.
    • Children feel better about themselves and are more confident in their abilities.
    • Children handle their emotions more effectively because they feel calmer and use activity to burn off stress.
    • Children feel more confident in social situations (friends, adults, school, etc.).
    • Concentration and focus in school comes easier.
    • Increases physical strength and stamina.

Building a Healthy Lifestyle for Kids

Be active – Have vigorous activity for yourself and your children everyday.

Do it together – Plan activities together, for example, walks, bike rides and swimming.

Be involved – Encourage involvement in community sports. Children meet new people and learn new skills.

Keep balanced – Help your children deal with stress and other emotions well.

Limit “screen time” – Keep television, computer use, and gaming to a minimum.

Watch the snacks – Keep all snacks as healthy and nutritious as possible. Limit snacking while watching TV.

Be selective – Teach your children to select healthy food. You will not always be around to do this for them.

Get good habits – Teach your children good exercise habits.

Sleep – Make sure your children get enough sleep.

    • Babies – 15 hours
    • School age – 9 to 12 hours
    • Teenagers – 8 to 12 hours

Be a healthy role model – Children learn from your example.

Relax – Have a relaxed, flexible parenting style with your children.

Have fun – Enjoy your time with your children. This is important for all of you.

If you know anyone who could use encouragement or would enjoy this information, please share our blog with them. The Good Choices Healthy Life “Fact Marks for Fathers” resource can be downloaded here, or a hard copy can be purchased in our store.