Michelle Obama's Tips for Getting Kids to Eat Healthy
Mark Wilson / Getty ImagesOn Tuesday, June 13, AOL Health hosted a live web broadcast with Michelle Obama (her first-ever live online chat). Mrs. Obama talked about her Let's Move initiative to combat childhood obesity and took live questions from the audience.
During the broadcast, the First Lady discussed how she and President Obama have made simple changes in their own household to encourage healthy eating, including eliminating snacks, encouraging drinking more water instead of filling up on sugary drinks, and serving more fruits and vegetables. They went through their cabinets and removed processed foods and began sitting down more for dinner as a family. Mrs. Obama says that she started out by making sure to cook one good meal a week -- she acknowledged that cooking every night isn't a realistic option for many busy parents.
Mrs. Obama stressed the importance of small, doable changes. "It's not about saying 'no' forever to ice cream and French fries," she said. "These are special treats." And she underlined the importance of leading by example: "Kids watch everything we do," she says, noting that her girls certainly check to see if she's eating her vegetables. Another tip from the First Lady: Get kids involved in cooking. By the time they're in middle school, kids are curious about cooking and "looking for independence," she said, adding that if they're "engaged in making the healthy snack, they are more likely to eat it."
While Mrs. Obama offered lots of tips for parents in the chat, she also called on school officials, legislators, food manufacturers, retailers, chefs, athletes and media companies such as Disney to do something about childhood obesity. "How do we make meals healthy, affordable and tasty?" she asked. For more on that and to see the entire interview, visit AOL Health.
For ideas on starting healthy eating habits in your home, browse our healthy recipes.