Q&A: Developing healthy habits during formative years

Q: We have a young and growing family, and I’d like to do everything I can during this formative period to encourage everyone in the house to develop healthy habits. Can you provide me with any helpful tips?

A: Great question! Intentionality is an important part of promoting good health. The following list of questions can help you take a more proactive approach: 

  1. What’s the quality of your fuel? When planning your family’s menu, think about the number of calories you’re consuming, the actual nutrients contained in the foods you eat, and the importance of including sufficient amounts of fruits and vegetables in your diet.
  2. Are you watching your weight? If you or anyone else in your family is overweight, see your physician to develop a program of diet and exercise that will help you shed the extra kilograms.
  3. Do you exercise regularly? You, your spouse, and your children should be doing some kind of physical exercise at least five days a week.
  4. Do you ingest any harmful substances? Tobacco, heavy alcohol use, illegal drugs, and excessive amounts of prescription medications all present serious threats to long-term health and quality of life.
  5. How is your emotional health? Take steps to ensure that your family’s life is kept on an even mental and emotional keel.
  6. How is your spiritual health? A strong personal faith can have a measurable impact on your physical health.
  7. Are you getting enough refreshing, restorative sleep? The amount and quality of the sleep we get is a vital component of good health.

This is just a quick run-down of the essentials, of course, but if you put these suggestions into practice, you and your family will be on track to live a long and healthy life. For more ideas, explore our Resources.

© 2018 Focus on the Family.  All rights reserved.  Used by permission.

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