Mothers all over the world have the problem of getting their kids to eat healthy almost always against their wishes. Regardless of whether you are a busy teacher, an office manager, or a homemaker, you will have some use for some creative tips and even tricks to ensure that your children get to eat food full of vital nutrients essential for their growth. Some handy tips for getting your kids to eat healthy food:
Jonah Engler’s Healthy Eating Tip No.1 – Offer Plenty of Choices
Nobody likes a situation bereft of choices, least of all older kids seeking independence. This is especially true at the kitchen table when you can expect rejection simply because there is an insufficient choice of dishes even though there may not be a significant difference in either taste or nutrition. By giving them a choice, you respect their wish for autonomy that they desperately crave for at this age while you retain control over the nutrition. You can even get them more excited about trying new food if you can make them feel that it was their idea. Meal planning together with your kids may also make the entire idea of having nutritious food more fun. You can have a weekly menu review meeting at the kitchen table where you can take into account their opinion on what they want to have over the week. Not only do they feel more excited to be a part of the exercise but they also learn about the importance of balanced diets early in their lives. Contrary to popular thought, kids prefer simple foods over fancy stuff, according to https://www.huffingtonpost.ca.
Jonah Engler’s Healthy Eating Tip No.2 – Let the Kids Make Their Own Plates
Another easy but effective method of allowing children to exercise their independence is let them experiment with new foods, colors, textures, and tastes. While overnight success should not be expected, by plugging away at it, sooner or later you will discover the kids starting to take an active interest in deciding what they want to have on their plate when they realize that they have the complete autonomy to decide. By giving your kids the option to choose, you do not have to lose control over the nutritional aspect. Make sure that the meal contains proteins, vegetables, complex carbs, fruit, and calcium-rich food like milk or cheese. By giving options within these categories, you kids can get to choose what to eat while you know that their diet is nutritionally balanced.
Jonah Engler’s Healthy Eating Tip No.3 – Combine New Foods with Stuff Kids Like
Children tend to shy away from new foods, which make introducing many healthy options very difficult. A relatively easy way of getting them to accept a new food of which they are suspicious is to combine it with something that the child already has a liking for. According to nutritional experts, in the first five years of his life, kids learn what to eat as well as when to eat and how much to eat based on the practices and cultural attitudes of their families and society. If you see that they are reluctant to try out something new, Jonah Engler suggeststhatyou can make it more acceptable and fun by pairing it with something they already favor. For example, encourage them to get used to carrot sticks by pairing it with tomato ketchup, or if they’re averse to broccoli, you may find them gobbling it up with their mac and cheese. Introducing them to foods with varied tastes, textures, and colors in the form of fresh vegetables and fruits, animal and plant-based proteins, whole grains, etc. is likely to help them avoid being picky later on in life.
Jonah Engler’s Healthy Eating Tip No.4 – Don’t Overdo the Snack Foods
Everybody loves snacks, especially the little ones; however, you must keep the consumption in line. It is important not to let the children hog on snacks because overeating invariably leads to the appetite for dinner being spoiled. This means that you should avoid any snacking close to dinnertime; if the kids are really hungry, you can give them a taste of whatever you have prepared for dinner. When a child is throwing a tantrum, it can be all too easy to calm him down by giving him a gag of cheesy crackers; however, this does not lead to the formation of healthy eating habits. As a concerned mother, you should ensure that the snacks are rich in protein and fiber and low on fats, salt, and sugar. Instead of giving them commercially packaged snacks, try to give them snacks prepared at home that are not only healthy but also provide an opportunity to introduce them to new foods. A few good examples include celery or carrot sticks with hummus, lightly salted popcorn, sweet corn salad with fresh tomatoes, slices of apple with peanut butter, unsalted nuts, fresh fruit, etc.
Jonah Engler’s Healthy Eating Tip No.5 – Let Them Explore Markets and Farms
There is more possibility of children taking an interest in healthy foods if only they knew more about the places fresh produce came from. Children need to appreciate that food that is picked up from supermarkets is grown with a lot of care and effort on farms. If you do not have the opportunity of exploring a farm, you should at least take them to the local market where they can see for themselves fresh vegetables, fruit, grains, and dairy products being bought and sold. You will find them enthralled with the different shapes, colors, and smells of the foodstuffs and they can get an opportunity to pick up what they like. You can be sure that their interest in food will get a boost after this exposure. Since kids also like to learn new things, you can show them diagrams or videos on how the human body digests food and what the function of each food class is.
Children can be notoriously picky eaters and mothers need to have a lot of patience and innovative strategies to get around their objections to give them food that is tasty as well as nutritious. Rather than imposing your will on them regarding what they should or shouldn’t eat, you can get them to be more willing to experiment with new foods by making them participate in meal planning, buying foods, and even preparing them.