INDULGENT GRANDPARENTS: TO TREAT OR NOT TO TREAT?
For many kids around the world, a trip to their grandparents’ is filled with play, laughter, and plenty of treats. Many children also know that when mum or dad says no, grandma or grandpa will likely say yes.
However, research from the University of Glasgow suggests that “treating” your grandchildren too much can result in a number of health problems. Overindulgence mixed with a lack of physical exercise can result in childhood obesity, which in turn raises the risks of heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. Many grandparents believe it’s their job to “spoil” the grandkids because they have years of parenting behind them, and they’re absolutely right – but it should be done in moderation.
This article isn’t here to scare you and tell you to cook nothing but vegetables for your grandchildren. Like most things in life, indulging is about balance.
Here are some tips to encourage a healthy lifestyle for yourself and your grandchildren:
- Get involved in a physical activity together with your grandchild. This can be anything from walking the dog to going for a swim at the local pool; find something both of you enjoy.
- Try to avoid using unhealthy snacks as an emotional tool.
- Cook healthy meals and stay persistent – even if they turn up their nose at first.
- If your grandchild is on a certain diet or has certain dietary requirements, adhere to them.
- If you’re a smoker, quit!
- If the parents have chosen a limit on gifts or treats, don’t break their rules.
- Spend time, rather than money, on your grandchildren.
Hey, there’s no need to panic, the grandchildren will be fine. Giving them that extra scoop of ice cream every now and again won’t do any harm. Enjoy the precious time you get to spend with them, and a little indulgence here and there won’t hurt!