Marian Rivera’s three tips on raising healthy kids during pandemic

Published November 4, 2020, 4:25 PM

by Jessica Pag-iwayan

Because no parent is exempted from the challenge of raising a child indoors

Raising happy and healthy children during these trying times is one of the toughest challenges every parent is facing today. In an exclusive interview with Manila Bulletin Lifestyle, celebrity mom and a mother of two Marian Rivera openly admits that they also find it challenging to raise their first-born, three-year-old Zia, these days.

To help other moms and parents to address this, the Nido 3+ ambassador shares three tips on how she, together with her husband Dingdong Dantes, is making sure that Zia is growing happy and healthy despite staying indoors.

ONE HAPPY FAMILY Marian Rivera with husband Dingdong Dantes, daughter Zia, and son Sixto (Images from @marianrivera)

1. Explain the current situation

Toddlers are naturally curious and love to explore and discover things. This is the same phase four-year-old Zia is now into, and this pandemic limits the exploration opportunities not just for her but for all other children.

To make sure her daughter understands why her outside activities were cut off, mommy Marian says that they carefully explained this scenario to her every now and then. “Zia is very active and she has a lot of curricular activities before,” she says. “She wants to go to school every day. But we explained to her the real situation and the things that might have happened if she goes out.”

And their patience works. Zia is able to understand things and adjust accordingly. “She loves seeing her teachers and her classmates, so she needed to adjust for online classes,” Marian continues. “She finally adapted. Now, she’s enjoying her online classes,”

Baby Zia dressed as Princess Jasmine

2. Give them healthy food

Proper nutrition is vital to keep children healthy and strong. And the celebrity mom says she’s making sure Zia is eating nutritious meals and drinking the right milk.

“It is important that she’s drinking her milk every day. She needs it para todo protektado siya like Nido 3+ (so she’s fully protected),” she continues. “Milk, vitamins, and healthy food. And, of course, drinking plenty of water. But this doesn’t necessarily mean that all unhealthy food is prohibited. Let’s not deprive our children. It’s inevitable for them to ask for sweets and chips. For us, we have a cheat day. What I am saying is, everything is okay as long as it is in moderation.”

3. Let them play and be active

For Marian Rivera, staying indoors does not mean that children can’t play and be active anymore. Parents can always find creative ways to let their kids play and have fun even in a small space. “Stay healthy and active. Hayaan lang na maglaro nang maglaro kahit sa loob ng bahay. Not necessarily kailangan bumili ng mga bagong materyal o laruan. Ngayon nga ang ginagawa namin, nagbabahay-bahayan kami ngayon nila Zia. Naghohorror-horror kami ng mga ilaw ilaw. (Let them play inside your house. You don’t need to buy new toys. For instance, Zia and I enjoy doing role play at home, or horror play using different light tricks),” she shares.

Marian with Zia and Sixto

Aside from role playing, the 36-year-old mom also says that she started teaching Zia some household chores. “Zia is fortunate to have a young brother Sixto, they are now playing together now that he’s one-year-old already. I give them different activities to do like painting or some educational toys,” she says. “Every now and then, I’m teaching Zia how to bake. I’m so happy and delightful that she’s now helping me in the kitchen. There are lot of things we can do inside our homes, it’s just a challenge of creativity for the parents’ part.”

Marian Rivera and Dingdong Dantes tied the knot on Dec. 30, 2014. The following year, the actress gave birth to baby Zia. In April 2019, their son Sixto was born.