Tips To Encourage Children To Eat Fruits And Vegetables
Vegetables and fruits constitute an important part of healthy eating. They are a great source of different nutrients like vitamins, folic acid, potassium, and fibre.
Veggies like cabbage, broccoli, spinach, tomatoes and fruits like apple, banana. Grapes etc provide additional health benefits, making them a superfood!
Why children don't like to eat fruits and vegetables?
Some children are fussy, some prefer only sweet taste of foods and some are extremely picky eaters. As a result, they may desist to new food or eat only limited food. This is called Food Neophobia- the behavior where kids refuse new foods. It is an eating behavior trait where children are either very picky or reluctant to taste new food. This makes the parents worried and stressed out.
Why is it important to give daily recommended servings of vegetables and fruits to kids?
Eating a lot of vegetables and fruits will keep diseases at bay. Sometimes, it becomes a very tedious task to make toddlers understand this. These little kids are very innocent and stubborn. They will enjoy eating fruits and veggies only when they find something interesting or engaging.
It is really important to give fruits and vegetables to children as:
- It strengthens their immune system.
- It helps them to fight against diseases
- It facilitates better growth and development.
- High-fiber fruits like apples, banana, oranges, and vegetables like Asparagus, Beans (green), Beetroot, etc helps the digestive system to work properly and prevent constipation.
How to Encourage Your Child to Eat More Fruits & Veggies?
- Try to give fruit salads and/or vegetables soups as snacks as much as possible.
- You can even try vegetarian recipes like uttapam with lots of veggies as toppings, sabudana with milk and fruits, roasted makhanas mixed with shallow fried vegetables like carrots and beans.
- Try to include at least one leafy green vegetables like cabbage, spinach, etc, every day.
Few tips and tricks to encourage your child to eat fruits and vegetables:
I've come up with a few tips and tricks to encourage your child to eat fruits and vegetables.
- Try out new recipes:
Patience is the key to success. Be patient and keep trying out new recipes every day. Play with colours, i.e keep adding colourful vegetables and fruits to your child's diet as it makes them look more appealing and acceptable for them to eat.
- Take the help of your child:
Encourage your child to choose the vegetables they want to have for lunch, trust me it works wonders. When they find their chosen vegetables at the table during their lunch or dinner time, they will be more excited to eat it. Of course, you have to play a good role in motivating them.
- Mealtime is not a nagging time:
Tell them fascinating stories and they will get enthralled. Make lunch/dinner time a fun time rather than a nagging time. Tell them the benefits of eating fruits and vegetables in a language that is easily understandable by them, which I usually do.
- Applaud and reward:
Once they are done with their lunch/dinner, never forget to applaud them. I always encourage parents to reward their children if they have achieved something. Rewards, like making a chat and putting a star on it each day, playing a fun game with them, making their favorite dishes, etc. will make them happy. And happy kids are healthy kids.
Thus, the only way to succeed is "Patience". You have to be patient with your child and never stop trying.
These were my tips and tricks on how to get a child, eat more fruits and vegetables. If you have some other ideas, do share it in the comments below. I would love to read them too.
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this post are the personal views of the author. They do not necessarily reflect the views of The Mom Store.