Its vital that children be trusted to make smart food choices. This is not always easy to do when surrounded by trusted adults who seem incapable of eating right.
Unlike most of the kids I knew, we ate breakfast, lunch and dinner with balance. At dinner, there was always meat, veg & carb, as well as salad.
What tripped me up and caused my weight gain as a child was my parents’ lack of attention to what I might be eating when not at home.
If I was with my sisters' I essentially ate the same way as at home. However, when with other family or friends, I got more junk food. This causes two problems: we are told to do as our elders tell us and society teaches to go with the herd.
The worst offenders were actually my aunt & uncle. She was a diabetic who drank diet soda and he was a cookie hound. Couple this with their youngest daughter's love of ramen noodles... Even worse? Both of them were teachers, who presumably knew something about proper diet, yet had a house full of overweight children.
I hated diet soda then and I hate it now. The taste is atrocious. But you shovel in enough ramen and cookies; you barely notice what you are washing it down with. I only drank water if my dad was around. Fruits and vegetables were unknown quantities. This, by the way, will make even the most petite into the most not so petite.