If you have young children, you likely have a daily battle with them to try and get them to eat their vegetables. This is totally normal; many children are picky eaters, and over time they will grow out this habit.
However, there are lots of things that you can do as a parent to encourage your kids to eat healthier. Here are five ways to help your children get over their fear of vegetables.
Very few parents have the time to plan a different menu every single day, especially if they are in full-time work – but it is possible to plan all of the family meals on a Sunday, and then do a food shop, so everything you need is in the house. This means that you will always have the ingredients for a delicious, healthy meal, and if you are smart, you will choose meals that take less than 30 minutes to prepare!
Do you want to try this? If so, simply use a standard calendar to plan meals at the beginning of the week. It is also possible to meal prep and cook all of your meals at once, but this is only really an option if you can dedicate a few hours a week to cooking everything up.
Present Healthy Food In New Ways
Lots of children dislike certain textures, but you can get past this by presenting healthy food in new ways. For instance, you could puree the vegetables or turn them into a smoothie using a cold press juicer. This removes the unpleasant texture and the bitter taste, so your child is much more likely to eat their vegetables (even if they don’t realize that they are doing it!).
If you decide to do this, consider using the best cold press juicer, as a high-quality juicer is both easy to use and easy to clean (unlike cheap juicers that normally have lots of small, fiddly components that need cleaning). This is perfect for parents who don’t want to spend ages washing up every night!
Consider making carrot and celery sticks that can be used as dipping tools. Most children like dips such as hummus and sour cream, so they can partially hide the taste of the vegetable using the dip.
Be Patient With New Foods
It is also essential to be patient when you are trying out new foods. Children have developing taste buds, so something that tastes good to you may not necessarily taste good to them. Respect this, and don’t pressure your child to eat anything they don’t want to eat. Instead, be patient, and offer up vegetables and fruits that you know they actually like. Over time their tongue will develop, and you can try introducing them to new foods again.
Be Their Role Model
Finally, it is essential to be their role model. If you have erratic eating habits or you are constantly trying new diets, your children will think this is a normal way to eat. So try to commit to a healthy, consistent diet that includes lots of vegetables, and don’t starve yourself if you feel hungry.