If asked what is the toughest part of being a parent? Well, for most of us getting kids to eat healthy food will be high on the list. It is certainly a task to make nutrition win over junk food. Learn more about making all three meals healthy yet kid-friendly! Let us look at some ideas parents can apply in persuading children.
1. Give Choices
Allow children to make choices between healthy options such as fruits, veggies, or cereals. Let them feel they are responsible for their health and independent to make a decision about what they must have. The options can be what the parents prefer and what kids choose will be what they ‘believe’ they prefer. As they grow older, choices should increase and change with respect to the child’s taste.
2. Be Their Role Model
Make sure you set a good example for your children. If you eat healthy food, so will the kids. Observational learning is always effective and acts as a building block for the child’s personality and preference development.
Use interesting names for healthy food that kids might consider ‘boring’. For instance, calling soup as ‘Harry Potter’s magical soup’ or fruit smoothie as ‘tooty fruity smoothie’. Such names are easy to create every day and are sure to convince the kids into having healthy food.
4. Sugar Or Dip Them Up
Sometimes kids might just refuse to eat veggies because they look bad to them. What you can do is sprinkle some brown sugar, or nuts, or apply tasty dips on the dish. This makes healthy food look appealing and delicious.
5. Little Chefs
Give the kids an opportunity to help you in the kitchen and make their own dishes.
Provide them with nutritious ingredients and let them make something out of it. You can overlook of course but it is certain that kids are bound to eat what they have created themselves.
6. Stack Up!
If you keep less junk food in the house and ensure that healthy nutritious food is always available in the fridge, kids are more likely to consume them. When they feel hungry only healthy but appealing options should be available around the kitchen.
Reinforcements refer to rewards given when the desired behavior is performed. Parents can give their kids small rewards for eating good healthy food and encourage them to develop a habit of eating nutrients and minerals.
It is therefore important to become more creative and patient when it comes to convincing the kids into having healthy food. These methods can come in handy but the preferences and interests of the children should not be ignored. Both parents and child should mutually work out meal plans which can improve their relationship and the child doesn’t feel forced into eating something he or she dislikes.