Everyone has different parenting styles and strategies, but we all have one thing in comment.
Every single parent in the world wants to give their child every possible advantage in life.
So start by feeding them vegetables!
A healthy diet gives our children so many advantages:
- Overall health
- Emotional regulation
- Brain power
But it can be really hard to get our children to eat healthy and nutrition foods. So how do parents do it?
Here are a few tips to getting your kids to eat their veggies:
Always offer them.
Make sure you’re offering vegetables at every meal.
It can be easy to not give your child something they won’t eat, but it’s important for your child to continue to see this item on their plate. Start with a very small amount if you are afraid of wasting.
Did you know that a child is more likely to try a food item if they continue to see it?
Think about a food you personally never wanted to try and then eventually did. Whether you liked it or not, it seems very foreign when you first see it. Eventually you were interested enough to try!
Use the "first this, then that" strategy.
We always start our meals by putting a balanced meal on each child’s plate in small amounts. They can choose what they eat, but they don’t get more of anything until they’ve finished each item. Then we make sure there is something we know they like on the plate.
If they finish their rice before their broccoli and ask for more, we simply say, “You can have more rice as soon as you finish your broccoli.”
There’s never a negative consequence for not eating the broccoli, but it’s a prerequisite for getting more of whatever they liked the most.
But what if they refuse to eat the vegetable?
Don't let it become a game.
Put on your best poker face and pretend you don’t care.
Eating their vegetables is their choice. No matter how much you want to, you can’t force a child to eat.
It has to be their choice. So make it simple.
We just repeat ourselves. “Like I said, you can have more rice as soon as you finish your broccoli.”
You don’t want to eat your broccoli? That’s okay, it doesn’t bother me.
Like I said – poker face. 😉
Try lots of different kinds.
It can be easy to get into a rut with vegetables where you serve the same things cooked the same way all the time.
Try lots of different vegetables!
The more vegetables you feed your children and the more you expose them to the better they will be set up for future health and healthy eating habits.
Make sure they're tasty!
This might seem like a given, but it isn’t. Try to cook your vegetables using different methods.
This doesn’t mean you have to cover them in cheese!
Just try different cooking methods or spices!
You can boil them, broil them, bake them, saute them, the list goes on and on!
Don't give up!
The most important thing to remember when trying to get your kids to eat more vegetables is not to give up!
It can be incredibly difficult to deal with picky children, and even the best eaters have their ups and downs.
But the best eaters were offered lots of different items and probably had very persistent parents.
Healthy eating in childhood leads to healthier choices in adulthood.
It all leads to a healthier, stronger, and better future for your child.