How to Get Kids to Eat Vegetables and Healthy Foods
As early as when kids start learning the word “NO,” it has been a challenge for parents to get their kids to eat healthy food.
This is probably why there are specific strategies and activities available for troubled parents out there through PlayEatGrow, which they can access anytime.
Additionally, we will be discussing a few helpful ideas below to address this problem:
1. Drop the “Because I Said So”
We’ve learned this the hard way. Nothing is actually ever learned simply because someone said so.
This is why we can’t rationalize with our kids to eat healthy simply because we told them to.
What you can do instead is to get them to talk about why they don’t like a certain vegetable or fruit.
We can also explain to them how nutrients work in strengthening the body.
By giving them information about why healthy food is essential, we are equipping kids with the knowledge to make wiser, healthier decisions on their own.
2. Colors and Textures Work
If your kids don’t like a vegetable because it is slimy, you can work your way to cooking it up differently in order to change its texture.
If your kid’s favorite color is purple, then you can level up their food by choosing vegetables and fruit that are naturally in the shade they love.
Younger kids are often more into eating something that looks good. You can use this to your advantage by being more creative in terms of plating and presentation.
You can also choose a wide variety of seasonal food that comes in an array of hues that your kids will surely be attracted to.
3. Aim for the Balanced Diet
We all need a certain amount of sugars, carbohydrates, even good cholesterol to have a healthy diet.
Healthy doesn’t mean completely giving up on snacks and sweet stuff.
Plan your kids’ meals that target a balanced diet in a way that doesn’t punish them but rather encourages them to have a bit of everything in moderation.
Yes, you can have that cookie after you finish your greens.
Yes, you can have ice cream after you finish the salad. Positively reinforce their health decisions.
4. Ensure Exercise Happens
Diet and exercise go together and can even get kids who love to eat to be more motivated.
If your kids want a second helping of ice cream, you can encourage them to take the dog out for a walk and play and be rewarded with it after.
If your kids are active, then be assured that they can burn the necessary calories that they take in when they snack on some munchies.
5. Be Their Role Model
Nothing creates a lifestyle faster than seeing the results.
If you want your kids to eat healthily, then they should be able to see you make the same conscious effort with your relationship towards food.
When they see that you do take time to ensure you yourself have enough exercise to go with your balanced diet, it’ll be easier for them to emulate.
6. Consistency and Accessibility Matters
If you want your kids to eat less processed meat and junk food, then maybe it would be good to evaluate what is currently accessible in your house.
It is difficult to tell them not to eat junk when junk is available in your pantry.
If you want them to munch on healthier alternatives, such as kale chips, crunchy vegetables, or fruits, then make these available at home.
Additionally, setting a consistent time to eat meals and take snacks can help regulate their eating habits.
This means that they won’t be unnecessarily hungry in the middle of the night, begging you to have pizza delivered.
Regulating the time for eating is as important as setting a balanced diet and enough exercise to counter a sedentary, unhealthy lifestyle.
7. Get Them Involved
Planning meals together can be a good family activity.
This way, you can receive feedback from your own kids about which food they particularly like and why.
This is important so you can rethink how you can get them to eat certain food that they might not like.
Learn what flavors they love and what specific reasons they might not like a certain dish.
Additionally, you can bring them with you on the next grocery trip so that they can also pitch in their suggestions along the way about what they want to eat and also come into agreement with them with the meal planning.
Most of all, get them to participate in cooking and preparing the meals.
This will make them appreciate home-cooked meals and also bring out everyone’s creativity.
It will be easier to explain to them the purpose of each nutritious ingredient, along with the science and math at work in cooking.
It will be an active and healthy family activity that everyone will love and look forward to after.