When you were a kid, your mom would always remind you,
“Eat vegetables! They’re good for you.” or “Eat this, not that.”
Those words would start countless of drama in your home. This usually ends up with you in tears as you forced yourself to eat the greens on your plate.
But you had your tricks. You had made your mom believed you finished your plate of veggies but little did she know that those green beans were in the dog’s bowl and the celery and asparagus were thrown out of the window.
As parents, it’s so challenging to make your children understand the idea of eating healthy foods such as vegetables. Sometimes you just want to give up and throw in the towel, and let the children eat their own way.
What is with these veggies that kids find so disgusting? Is it the texture? The color? Or the general taste?
Here are some tips to get your children to eat vegetables.
Variety and Fun
For a start, you set the table with colorful plates and utensils. Since vegetables have different shapes, colors, and textures, use these to make something creative. For example, make a face on the plate using the vegetables. This way, meal time for the kids is fun and something to look forward to, rather than something they are forced into.
Taste is Important
Veggies are naturally bitter. It is very important to reduce the bitterness of vegetables because by nature, kids just hate bitter tasting foods.
Roasting is one way to bring out the vegetable’s natural sweetness, or you can add homemade, flavored sauce to make veggies appealing to them. You can also try butter or dips to overpower the bitter tastes of some vegetables.
Hidden Vegetable Trick
Hide veggies within their favorite foods. This way, you can mask the taste until they unknowingly get used to the flavor. Examples are, mixing it in their favorite pasta, soup, smoothie, omelet or toppings on a pizza.
Kid’s Chef Day
To make eating of vegetables more fun, have your kids involve in marketing and allow them to pick their veggies of choice. Guide them in the kitchen as well; they would love to eat meals they’ve helped prepare. And don’t forget to praise them for every veggie they hate to eat, but still tried.
Veggies as Snacks
Stock up and offer vegetables for snacks. This way, you will limit unhealthy snacks in your home. And if your kids are starving, feed them vegetables especially if there are no other snacks.
Parents should become role models and set a good example. Your children look up to you and this includes the food choices you make. So the best way to persuade your own children is to let them see you eating and enjoying vegetables yourself.