While enjoying parenthood, have you ever wonder the truth behind the health rules passed on to us from our elderly inclulding our mom dearest? I bet like myself you must have heard not only from your mom, but also from your PILs, aunts, uncles, grandmas etc on what you should and shouldn't do in parenting.
Well, I came across an interesting article entitled "Your mom's 9 health rules" which actually answers some of my doubts on those health rules. I guess with new research and developments some of the old scool of thoughts on health rules are no longer applicable. Our mom meant well but we ought to keep ourself updated too to ensure we're giving the best to our children. Having said that, I've always trust my mum's health advice simply because I know she reads articles/ books on health (especially children's health as she used to look after her eldest grandchild i.e. Uaua fulltime and now her other grandchildren when one of us goes outstation) and watch health programmes on Astro :)
Anyway, let me share with you in brief what the article says:
1. Mama always said : Eat more! Kids are starving
Not true. According to a paediatric nutrient from Washington University School of Medicine, feeding should be based on appetite and not to be judged by an empty bowl/ plate. She said this is to help the children to stay attuned to their feelings of satiety (condition of feeling full) thus avoids future overweight problems. She added, healthy options should be allowed when they are hungry and stop when they are full.
2. Mama always said: Don't sit so close to the TV - you'll ruin your eyes
Not true (BINGO! A question I've been wanting to find out the truth has been answered!! ). According to the American Optometric Association, children can't harm their eyes by watching too close to the TV screen. It may however cause eyestrain which could lead to headache said a pediatrician in Dallas. Headache doesn't worsen your eyes but it is uncomfortable. For healthier viewing, we are to remind our children not to watch in total darkness as the darkness contrast will worsen the strain. They should also be 10 feet away. But if they keep on gluing their noses to the TV screen get their eyes checked.
3. Mama always said: Don't read in the dark
True. Reading in the dark will cause eyestrain which could lead to intermittent blurred vision and headaches especially if kept at a prolong period. However, all these symptoms can be resolved with rest. Nevertheless if it is a habit it could speed the onset of nearsightedness especially those who are genetically predisposed. For healthier habit, encourage children to read under at least a 60 watts of light and remind them to read at arm's length and to take frequent breaks.
4. Mama always said: Don't frown, you'll get wrinkles
True. Even laughing can give us wrinkles. But there's no way to avoid it nor any reason to try. The best we could do to protect our kids future faces and skin is to load our kids with SPF and encourage healthy stuff like vegetable.
5. Mama always said: Sit up straight
True. Slumping over puts major pressure on the back, shoulder and neck. It will also prevent the lungs from completely filling. But as nagging kids to sit up straight is frustrating, a better option is to try and let them stay active to strengthen their muscles and alignment.
6. Mama always said : That music is too loud!
True. It can cause future hearing loss. If your children likes to have their tunes up, ask them to take a break every 20 minutes. You could also get them a noise cancelling headphones to drown out background noise. It will make them less tempted to turn up the volume.
7. Mama always said: We're having dinner together cause that's what families do
Not quite true. More like being able to monitor the kids are eating balanced meals. Nevertheless, it is a great way to connect. But if your kids always response with a word, try to let them ask you questions instead or you could ask them specific questions like what made you laugh today? What was the nicest thing someone did to you today? What was the nicest thing you did today? You might be in for a surprise with their answers.
8. Mama always said: Eat your breakfast!
Very true. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Study shows that children who have breakfast perform better in school. Most breakfast foods are excellent sources of calcium, fibre and iron. But if your child is a picky breakfast eater, have them grab a handful of raisin, some dry cereal, or some left over pizzas to nibble on when they are ready.
9. Mama always said: Put on a coat, you'll catch a cold!
Not true. What you will get in the cold is ....just cold. Some research suggest that prolonged exposed to chilly temperatures will dampen the immune system because it puts strain on the body. But it does not make one sick. Only cold and flu viruses cause illness.