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  1. #1
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    Default Cousins with an unhealthy diet

    We spend a lot of time with my family which I love as my nephew is 10 months older than my daughter and my niece is 3 years older so I'm hoping she loves growing up close to her cousins. However, my niece and nephew have pretty unhealthy diets with lots of biscuits, cake, chips, soft drink and juice. I don't care if my daughter has small amounts of those things when she's older but the quantities that they consume are pretty bad - so much that they rarely eat lunch or dinner because they eat so much junk.

    Now I know it's my sisters choice to feed her kids those things, but as my daughter gets older and I limit her consumption of those types of food, how do I explain to her that she can't have 5 biscuits instead of a sandwich when her cousins are sitting up munching on that type of food? I don't want to make my sister feel bad if my daughter repeats what I say, but when she's too young to understand good nutrition, what do I say?

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    We have many friends whom allow their children to eat junk and we don't and I just explain to my children that they need to eat their sandwich or vegies apposed to junk as it will help them grow up big and strong. I also take enough of our healthy food to share and always offer the other child a sandwich or vege roll- 90% of the time they eat it too

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    I could of wrote your post word for word. I know my BIL comments as my daughters eat so healthy so he knows what they are feeding their kids isn't very healthy but they do it for a quick fix. If the child's hungry 'bam here's a biscuit' that they can help themselves too or if they are upset 'here have some chips'.
    Could you actually talk to your sister? Don't say 'hey I think you are making bad food choices for your children' instead say 'you'd rather limit the amount of sweets and sugar your daughter's having so could she cut it down a bit when you guys are around?'
    My eldest 2 know that those kinds of sweets are for treats only and if they choose to eat a biscuit with their cousins then don't ask for anything else even when we are out to dinner once a week.
    Funny thing is when the girls cousins come around they are happy to eat fruit, yoghurt and healthy snacks because I don't have an sweets, biscuits, cordial or juice in my house!

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    Yup mine know juice and cordial are a special special birthday treat so even the 2 year old will ask for water

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    Same issue here with DD and her cousins. They are fed appallingly, and the younger one is obese as a 7 year old

    I have found that after a day/weekend with her cousins, DD usually comes home and has a terrible stomach ache from the junk she has been eating, as her body just isn't used to it. I have used that as a good illustration of the things junk does to our bodies, and why we don't want to eat like that most of the time.

    I have had to limit the time that she spends with her cousins because her behaviour is so terrible afterwards. Probably a combination of the terrible food and the fact that they are feral and a bad influence anyway. It's sad because DD absolutely idolises them as she doesn't really have any other kids in the family. It's hard to strike the balance.

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    Being aware is a great start and getting onto it sooner rather than later. My family eat healthy so its not a problem, but my best friend son spends a lot of time with an unhealthy aunt and her family who eat crap all the time that at 9 years of age he thinks 2 large Big Mac meals is a normal meal. His mother does not like arguing with him so she buys him junk, I was over last weekend and saw him eat, chips, lollies, Nutella and lunch in 1 hour. He is starting to beef up as well as he is very inactive. Anyway my point is families can have a huge impact on what your kids eat and want I eat and its ok for you to speak about what you want our child to eat, if you act now you shouldn't have to deal with problems later on

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    What I suggest would be to explain to your dd about moderation and set up her expectations before hand that she can only have a limited amount of junk food. Also agree with pp to pack what you want her to eat and perhaps a bit more to share with the other cousins bc kids tend to copy each other and if the cousins start trying the healthy food then their parents might be encouraged to offer healthy food more often.
    With my dd when we go to parties I have been pretty firm with her and she knows that she is only allowed one cup of juice and then water and if lolly bags are given I will let her choose one then save the rest for another time (and secretly dispose if it later). This way I feel she doesn't feel like she misses out too much. It is hard though and depends on the age of the kids.

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    I'm pretty upfront with my dhs family about this kind of thing. I just say no she can't have lollies now, and you shouldn't be giving miss 6 a whole bag either. Ands I put then away. But then I'm not fussed if they think I'm a ***** or they get upset so this works in every way!!

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    We eat very healthily here. Our best friends (kids are like cousins to each other) do not share the same food values as us. We have explained (and continue to do so) to our kids why we eat the way we do. My 7 year old really gets it, and prides himself on his healthy lunchbox and lack of processed food. It's hard when it's in their face, but stick to your guns. My kids know what a sometimes food is but further than that, know why. Knowledge is power!

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    I'm in the same boat. DD is 2 and I rarely let her eat any junk food. When we go to a birthday party, I let her have a small price of cake, with only half the icing. I never let her eat biscuits/chips/lollies/cookies/etc. I only let her have homemade treats because store bought are full of preservatives. My brothers kids on the other hand.... He lets them eat those 'shapes' biscuits, tiny teddies, chips, 2 minute noodles, lollies, etc on a daily basis. His kids are 3 and 1.
    On the occasion I look after my niece, I make her eat healthy because that's all we have in the house. When she asks for lollies or cookies, I tell her we don't have any and we often end up making some Anzac biscuits or something. My brother often packs an unhealthy lunch for her, which I put in the fridge and give back at the end of the day. Instead I make my niece and dd a healthy lunch and fruit/yogurt for snacks.
    I'm yet to let my dd stay there for a sleepover partly because she's too young and partly because I'm worried they'll feed her crap. My brother knows I don't let dd eat any junk and he thinks its funny to sneak her 'treats'. He claims its 'cruel' to withhold treats/junk food and that a little wont hurt. Trouble is, his definition of a little is vastly different from my definition.


 

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