Friday, 8 November 2013

6 Tips To Encourage Children to Eat Healthy

Having trouble with your children eating their fruits or vegetables? 

Frustrated with the endless battles?

We have some useful tips on how to keep your kids eating healthy.

In Australia there are many fussy eaters and a key reason for this is fast or processed food.  Once children taste the sugars and salts they will want more of them and become fussy. 

So one of the key ways to keep your children eating healthy is reducing the amount of fast or processed foods that are in their diet. Yes most of you are aware of this but it can be and tricky task.

When you feed a baby vegetables then move onto fruit you might find that they will want more of the fruit as it has natural sugars. This is the same with fast or processed food, once a baby or child tastes these foods they are likely to want more as the taste makes them happy.

As children grow it becomes more difficult to remove or change patterns so healthy eating is best started at a young age.  

We know nature’s food is the best so have always added it to our children’s diet. From a young age they have eaten fruits and vegetables and we have kept the fast food and processed food right down to a minimum.  

They now eat a large variety of fruits and vegetable but there are a few that they don’t like. Our daughter does not like Brussels sprouts, eggplant, oranges, or tomatoes(outside of a sauce) and that’s okay with us. Our son eats just about everything except Brussels sprouts and eggplant.

One of my tricks is putting eggplant into my parmigiana sauce, they don’t notice, not even Steve ;) 

Some people say we are lucky but really we have been vigilant. Yes there are many times our children want sweets and fast food but it’s always been a treat, not a common staple food.

If you do have a tough time getting your children to eat healthy food there are ways to work around it.

Here’s How
The number one thing to do is to get your children to at least taste the healthy food you serve up, if they pull a sour face you have somewhere to start. Sometimes no matter what you do children will just reject a type of food and that is okay.

Remove Temptation
You can either pack the treats and sweets away and out of sight or completely remove them and opt to purchase healthy food. It’s good to have fresh healthy food available for your children and with some time they will choose it themselves.

If your children often pull a sour face when eating healthy food cover them with a great tasting sauce.  Healthy food doesn't have to taste bad, you can make it taste real good if you take the time to learn how. Just by adding different herbs you can make a difference so find ways to make them tasty with a camouflage sauce.

The Empty Plate Method
Many kids reject food because of the parental influence and just like to be independent (our daughter was one of them and still is) If you seem to have a issue with getting them to eat what you serve them try this - 

  • Give your child a empty plate (and no this is not abuse, it can turn out well)
  • Let them dish up what they want
  • If it’s small appreciate what they done 
  • If it’s big well you know, make it a big deal

Talk About Food 
Tell them exactly how the food they are eating is benefiting their body and will help them in life.

Get Them Involved
When cooking or shopping for food ask or let them be involved with what you do. Ask them to choose their favourite fruits and vegetables to get at the market and give them easy jobs to do when preparing food. 

Start a Garden 
It can be a great way of showing your children how your food grows. Get them to grow it, if they watch it grow they may be more willing to eat it. This happened with my daughter. She disliked green beans but when we grew them, everyday she went out to pick them and found a liking for them. 

That brings us to the end of this post so go and try some of these out, they may just work. Most of all have fun in the process.

Thank You for Reading

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