(CNN) – Building healthy eating habits are crucial when it comes to kids.

Dr. David Montgomery, a Cardiologist from the Piedmont Heart Institute said, “Kids will eat what we give them, so when we are feeding our kids we need to start by feeding them the healthy foods.”

When it comes to heart health the sooner the better. That’s according to researchers at Northwestern University’s Fineburg School of Medicine.

Dr. Montgomery said, “You actually can develop coronary heart disease, plaque in the heart arteries as early as eight, nine, ten years old. Obesity, cholesterol, blood pressure, eating the wrong things, and then things like sedentary lifestyle, those are all very firm, hard fast risk-factors for heart disease.”

So what should parents do?

Dr. Montgomery said, “Your kids are going to do what you do, they’re not going to necessarily do what you say, so if they see you planning your meals around fruit and vegetables they’ll be more apt to do that themselves.”

And, get them up and moving. According to the National Institutes of Health, kids need about an hour of physical activity every day.

If parents join in, those healthy habits will be formed in no time.