When it comes to your child, you likely want to give them important gifts that will last a lifetime. When it comes to their health, there are investments you can make to give them a shot at better health for the rest of his or her life. Here are three such gifts that every parent should bestow on their child for life-long good health, if they are able.
A Love for Natural Food
While no, it isn’t necessary to buy all-organic produce if that’s above your budget, no child should leave for college without knowing the tastes of fresh Brussels sprouts, baby spinach, avocados, sugar snap peas, dandelion greens and squash. The same can also be said for more exotic and unusual fruits such as kiwis, mangoes, starfruit, durians, kumquats and plantains. Some kids can be picky eaters, and that’s usually not a problem. However, kids that taste a wide variety of healthy and natural foods will be more likely to try them again as an adult. As these foods are rich in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and other essentials, broadening your child’s palate can give them a health advantage over their peers who will only eat corn, apples, bananas and potatoes.
Well-Maintained and Undamaged Skin
You may think your daughter’s beauty mark is adorable or that your son’s mole is a mark of distinction, but such birthmarks can turn cancerous later in life. If it’s small enough to be removed without plastic surgery, consider paying to have it done even if insurance won’t cover it. This is an especially good idea if the mark is somewhere they cannot see easily, as this makes checking the mark for changes an exercise in mirror gymnastics. Also, instill in your children that sun exposure necessitates sunscreen. Sun damage is cumulative over a lifetime, so teach them young to protect their skin.
A Mouth Full of Healthy Teeth
The cost of braces and retainers can be staggering, but crowded teeth can become a nightmare in your child’s 30s and 40s as cavities crop up in the spaces they were unable to brush and floss properly. Small chips that aren’t capped or bonded can turn into painful cracks necessitating root canals at any time. Wisdom teeth left to rot can cause horrific infections and migraines, in addition to putrid breath. A mouth full of healthy, uncrowded, whole teeth is a gift beyond price.
If you want to give gifts that will last a lifetime, these three are top picks. While they may not appreciate these gifts while they are young, they will certainly see the value of them throughout their long and healthy adult years.