They're Watching. How What You Do Affects Your Kids

Monday, April 22, 2013

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You might have noticed that your kids pay attention to EVERYTHING! They notice what you’re wearing, the words you say, and things about the world around them that you stopped paying attention to years ago. As a parent, there are lots of things you model for your kids—how to deal with a bad day; telling the truth; being a good person. But there are other things your kids are watching that you may not be aware of.

Did you know? One of the best predictors of whether your child becomes a smoker is if you smoke. Staying smokefree is good for you and good for your kids! If you’ve struggled to stay smokefree and sometimes “slip up,” you can still be a good role model for your kids by talking with them about how hard it is to quit smoking and by continuing to try to become smokefree. 

You (and your kids) are what you eat. Your kids watch what you do, including what you eat. And—especially when they’re younger—you are the person who provides most of the foods your child eats. This doesn’t mean you have to avoid all of your favorite treats. Showing your kids that desserts and salty snacks are "sometimes foods" is just as important as making the good stuff like fruits and veggies a normal part of your home’s food culture.

Active moms (and dads) have active kids. Exercise doesn’t have to be a chore. And nobody can remind you of that better than kids. For kids, exercise time is play time! Whether you’re chasing each other around the yard, tossing a ball, going for a walk, or hanging at the park, being active as a family is important for your health and your child’s. Re-learn how much fun it can be to get your body moving. Make play and physical activity part of your family culture.

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