Following a healthy lifestyle is not always easy. Sometimes it can be tempting to eat junk food when you’ve had a difficult day, or to relax on the sofa rather than going for a run. Living well requires a great deal of commitment, motivation, and resistance, but the ultimate reward of physical and mental wellbeing more than makes up for the hard work you put in.

If looking after yourself can sometimes be tough, convincing others to live a healthy life is even harder. And when you’re a parent, you want to instill the same positive values and habits into your children. Raising children to embody positive attitudes and behaviors will help them flourish and grow up into the best adults they can be. In an ideal world, your kids will appreciate the benefits of exercise, healthy eating, and spirituality. But it’s not always easy to lead by example. You are not the only influence in their young lives, as their life choices can also be swayed by their friends and the media. 

So how can you make an impact on your children and help them grow up to be happy and healthy? Here are four great parenting tips to get you started.

Exercise together

Physical exercise is one of the cornerstones of a healthy lifestyle. Doctors recommend a baseline of thirty minutes of moderate-intensity activity every day, but some kids are reluctant to get outside. It’s essential you make exercise into something fun, rather than a chore they need to tick off. Spend time outdoors together, getting your endorphins flowing and having a good time. Go for runs and bike rides around the park, spend your weekend’s hiking, or try exciting new activities like stand-up paddleboarding and rock climbing.

Promote healthy eating

There are far too many junk food adverts targeted at kids, and as a result, it is hard to break the allure of unhealthy burgers and sweet treats. You are responsible for feeding your child, so make sure you ply them with plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables and get them to try all kinds of foods when they are young. This will make them less likely to become fussy eaters and more likely to maintain their healthy eating habits as they start to fend for themselves.

Let them think for themselves

As a parent, you may be keen to impart your own beliefs and values to your child but it’s important you let them think for themselves. Maybe you want to enroll them in an online seminary school or take them to church with you on a Sunday morning. There is nothing wrong with this, but make sure you refrain from being overbearing with your own beliefs. Explain spirituality to them, and that there are multiple belief systems out there. Let them decide for themselves and shape their own future.

Discourage screen time

Far too many modern children are addicted to their phones, which can have disastrous consequences for their mental and physical health. Although you may make the decision to buy them a phone in time, make sure you discourage excessive screen time. Spend time on more wholesome activities instead, such as reading, exercise, and playing games.