As a parent, remember to stock your pantry and refrigerator only with healthy choices so when your hungry child raids it, he automatically makes a good choice.
Hunger vs Fullness
Pressuring a child to eat just one more bite or finish the last few spoons of food tends to do more bad than good. By making a child eat that extra bite when he says his stomach is full, does nothing to improve his nutritional intake or to improve his eating habits. When we pressurize our children to eat more when their stomach feels full, we unintentionally teach them to ignore their own internal cues of hunger and fullness. Children learn to not listen to their own bodies and are constantly looking for external cues and parental approval when it comes to meal times. How much a child should eat should always be the decision of the child. Offer frequent, small, healthy meals to children who eat small portions.
As a parent one of the easiest ways to help your child eat healthy is to not buy store bought snacks and drinks and instead provide unhealthy food choices at home. In almost all aspects of life, children will mimic their parents. So if you want your child to eat healthy and have a healthy lifestyle, one of the easiest ways to encourage it, is to do the same. Follow the rules you expect your child to follow.