What does it really mean to get a healthy start in life? Most will consider it as being fed healthfully as a baby; given lots of love and being cared for by doting parents and being allowed to lead a happy, healthy childhood. It can be an interesting subject to study more into as healthy adults generally tend to grow from healthy children.
While the source of all baby things good (as can be observed here) and natural should collectively add up to a more wholesome upbringing. It makes a lot of sense, at least to those who take some time to consider it.
So what exactly can a parent do to give their child a head start in life so that they stand the best chance of growing into adulthood healthily?
Feed Them Well
It doesn't take too much figuring out that a healthfully fed baby stands a much better chance of being healthy when they grow older. All aspects of their physical body will benefit from a good nutrition base in early life.
These range from the development of the muscular and skeletal systems for a strong body, to the effectiveness of the auto-immune systems to fight off disease and the more advanced development of their brain and nervous systems thanks to the right nourishment and balance of vitamins and minerals essential for health.
However, there is also more to getting a good start in life than just eating correctly, although it is a big part of the equation.
Love Your Children!
There have been endless studies done into the effects of the abundance or lack of love in a child's life and how it affects them in later life. A child raised in a loving, harmonious family generally tends to grow into a well balanced and loving adult. Whereas a child raised in a dysfunctional family with parents always fighting and showing little love or concern for the child generally tends to grow into a troubled adult.
There is more to it than just that.
Praise vs Condemnation
It has also been shown in studies that a child raised with lots of praise for the things they do well grows into a confident, self assured adult with a high self esteem. While the polar opposite of that situation where a child is forever condemned for the mistakes he or she makes will grow into a shy, introverted adult with low self esteem.
Schools must shoulder some of the blame in the way the education system is laid out. Children are routinely chastised for making mistakes and their homework is littered with big red crosses where they have erred.
It would be much more beneficial to get rid of that system and praise each child for their achievements and while it is still important to make sure they know when they have made a mistake, it should be pointed out in such a way that the child can learn from that mistake in a positive way so they succeed at the next attempt.
A great reward for achievement is the praise of the teacher and of the parents. Praise for the things a child does right brings them up and fills them with confidence and the desire to do more good things.
Condemnation only brings a child down and sucks the ambition from them. You only have to notice this yourself when your boss chews you out for a mistake you made even when you were trying to do your best and give it you all. You certainly don't feel like excelling again for that boss and you might even think about quitting because the boss is not someone you want to work for any more.
Yet on the other hand, when you are praised for a job well done by your boss, you feel great, lifted up to new heights and you want to do more great things for that boss!
So give your children a great start in life by making sure their physical needs are met in full through a healthy diet as well as their emotional and intellectual needs by giving them lots of love and praising them for their achievements. Is that not the best way to start out in life?