Tips for Encouraging Your Kids to Eat Vegetables
Getting children to eat veggies is a challenge for most parents, but they are an essential part of a healthy diet. Therefore, you need to encourage your children to eat vegetables by following these tips:
Set a Good Example
Your kid will learn about food choices from you, which means that you should set a good example for him/her. The best way to get your child to eat vegetables is to eat them yourself and enjoy them. During family meals, you should take the opportunity to teach healthy eating habits by serving big helpings of veggies.
Pasta, stir-fries, roasts, and curries all taste better with a few vegetables, so you should include them in all your meals. If your kids see you filling your plate with veggies, they will want to emulate you.
Do Not Give Up
After tasting certain veggies for the first time, it is normal for kids to dislike them. However, you should not give up if they refuse to eat – you should keep trying. The easiest and fastest way to make some veggies more appealing and tasty is to spice them properly, which means you should experiment with adding spices and other condiments. For great blends and supreme quality spices, check out http://oldmansion.com/.
They might end up changing their minds if they see that you are always putting veggies on their plates. Sometimes, children need to try new foods up to ten times before they accept them.
Praise Your Child
If your child eats veggies, you should praise him/her each time if you want him/her to keep trying them. Praise will work best if you let your child know what you are praising him/her for – for instance, you can say, ‘I love the way you ate your broccoli and carrots!’ However, you should not let the praise become the focus of the meal because you want your child to eat vegetables because he/she likes them and not for praise.
Avoid punishing your child for refusing to eat veggies because you will make him/her hate them even more. If your child refuses veggies, you should take the meal away for a while without making a big deal out of it.
Ask Your Child to Help You Cook
If you involve your child in the cooking and preparation of veggies, he/she will be more likely to eat them. For instance, you can let your child:
- Wash and toss salad leaves
- Arrange sliced tomatoes and capsicum on a pizza base
- Choose dinner veggies whenever you go shopping
Older kids can help you to chop and grate them if you think that they are ready to handle sharp kitchen tools.
Turn Veggies into Snacks
Vegetables such as carrots can make a great snack if you stock up on them and limit junk food in your house. This will allow your child to have more veggies to choose from whenever he/she is hungry.
Here are some snack ideas:
- Serve veggie sticks with dip, cheese, or natural yoghurt.
- Keep a container of chopped vegetables such as carrots, capsicum, and cucumber.
- Offer frozen baby peas to older kids when they ask for snacks because they pose a choking hazard to smaller kids.
Opt for Variety and Taste
You should buy veggies in different shapes and colors to add variety. You never know, your child might find one vegetable and fall in love with it. If you add veggies to your child’s favorite meal, the focus will not be on the new item.
Taste is important if you want your kid to like eating vegetables. For instance, you can try to roast your veggies with lemon juice and fresh herbs to make them taste better. Your kids might find them more appealing.