Everyone knows there is a direct link between what you eat and how healthy you are. If your diet consists mainly of “junk food” you’re much more likely to be unhealthy than if your diet consists mainly of healthy, balanced nutrition. What you may not know is that your child’s poor diet can have negative, long-term effects on his or her health later in life. This can be seen in three major ways: habits, overall health, and dental health.
Diet creates habits
How you eat is part of a habit. When you feed your child, chances are that you’re feeding your child based on your own eating habits. For example, if you are a “meat and potatoes” person, you will serve those kinds of meals to your child. As children grow, they learn and adopt their parents’ diet habits. So the way they eat as children, good or bad, will likely stay with them into adulthood.
Diet affects overall health
Good food can help keep the body healthy, and bad food can contribute to damage. For example, a lot of salty, fatty foods can contribute to high cholesterol. However, it doesn’t happen overnight. If your child eats a lot of bad foods from a young age, the health problems that arise may not be known until much later.
Diet affects dental health
Another way your child’s health can be affected by diet is in his or her teeth. Many children like sweet foods like cookies, candies and sodas. Unfortunately, these foods often lead to cavities. Other foods, such as fruit juices, can be acidic, wearing away the protective enamel of the teeth. When these two factors are paired together, your child’s teeth may become more damaged as time passes, leading to major problems into adolescence and adulthood.
Food is about more than satisfying hunger. The nutrition your child gets through diet can help keep him or her healthy for years to come. Conversely, a poor diet can not only create bad habits in your child’s lifestyle, but can have lasting negative effects on your child’s overall health and dental health.
Start creating healthy habits now by giving your child a balanced, nutritious diet. And to make sure your child is on the right track in dental health, visit experts such as those with SmithFamilyDental.com to see how we can help ensure your child’s teeth are healthy and strong for many years to come.