As important as it is to serve and eat healthy food, equally important is to maintain and teach good food hygiene and cleanliness to kids. Toddlers are the right age to instil basic habits of hygiene and cleanliness.
Today, we share some basic good food hygiene habits that must start installing in young kids as early as toddlers.
- Show your tot that you wash your hands before eating and help her do so too. Even if you think you end up feeding your baby or toddler most of the food, it is still important to follow this. This will get your child into the habit of washing hands every time s/he sit down for a meal. It has worked very well for us and now my daughter would run and wash her hands before any meal whether I tell her to or not.
- Help her wash her hands once meal is over. Washing hands and mouth after a meal is equally important. Talk to your child about why washing hands is important.
- Keep nails short and trim them at regular intervals. Long nails get dirty and can cause diseases.
If your toddler refuses to let you cut her nails, you may tell stories or read some books on this subject. Below is one book about a 2 years old who refuses to let her mother trim her nails.
- Teach toddlers that fruits and vegetables must be washed well in running water before eating.
- Toddlers are bound to make mess specially when they are eating by themselves, but try to teach them gently not to do it on purpose. Wait for a reasonable amount of time to allow them to finish their meal and if you see them playing with food, tell them the meal is over. At the same time, you will have to allow them to make some mess when they are learning to eat by themselves.
- Help your toddler in brushing her teeth twice a day. Tell your kids the importance of brushing teeth in the morning and at night so that they do it for themselves and not because someone is after them. In our experience, reading fun books on the subject really help. They allow children to relate with characters who are like them and it motivates them to do the right thing by themselves.
Below are a few recommendations:
This one is my daughter’s favourite bed time brushing story.
- Ensure utensils are washed properly and tell your kids about importance of cleanliness.
- Teach them to wash fruits and vegetable in running water before eating.
Hope these tips will help you in teaching about good food hygiene to your kids. Do leave a comment to let us know what you feel. If you like this article, do not forget to share it.