Do you have Picky little eaters?? Here are a few tips that might help:
– Make sure to always provide healthy options. The more you give your child things from the cupboard for snacks like crackers, gold fish crackers, fruit snacks, cookies, etc. Those things that are quick… the less your children will want to try new things or eat healthy things.
– Provide variety. If you find a vegetable your child likes so you try to offer it every day, they may eat it up and love it, but after a few days or weeks they may get to where they completely stop eating that food entirely.
– Provide your child with VERY SMALL amounts of food!! Then after they eat it, you can give them more. As parents we are constantly putting way too much food on our small children’s plates and it is very overwhelming for them.
– Be Careful telling your child to eat their food because it is good for them and will help them grow chest hairs, or muscles, etc. When they hear that the food is “healthy” or “good” for them. That tells them…. “then it must be yucky”. In their minds, it cannot be both. For some kids, this can also be the start of strength of wills…they hear you, as the parent, encouraging them to eat the healthy foods so it makes them want to do the opposite–not eat it! Finally, in the past, I’ve said to my son “Don’t you want to eat your carrots? They’ll give you strong eyes!” And he’s said, “No thanks. I don’t want strong eyes.” Kind of painted myself into a corner there didn’t I? For some kids, telling them its healthy and will make them strong is an incentive to eat it, for others it’s a turn off. So just be careful and know your child.
– Make eating FUN!!!! Always sit down at the table or on a picnic blanket WITH your children and eat with them! Don’t talk about the food… talk about them, talk about their day, ask them questions, make meal time fun!! Give them your full attention during meals and eat with them!
This was a fun idea I used with my son who is an extremely picky eater. It was also a good way to make the magic of the Easter eggs last a day or two longer. Again, using small amounts of food, I hid the snacks inside the eggs for him to find throughout the house. He was so excited to see what was inside each egg.
Another fun idea would be to do healthy eating bingo, or a healthy eating challenge with your kids to see if they can make five healthy choices throughout the day (remember, choosing to drink water is a healthy choice too!). Be creative!
– Cut up some fruit and vegetables, have some protein pre-cooked and ready. Then divide it up into snack sized baggies. Put the healthy options into a container in the fridge for snacks. This way you have QUICK options to pull from. Let your child choose their snack from the healthy options. OR pull out 2 options and let them choose. If they feel like they have a bit of control over what to eat, they may eat it better.
– Let your children help you make some of their meals!! When they have that sense of pride and accomplishment of making it, they may be more willing to try it!
Hang in there!! Sometimes it is hard to make that transition to get them to eat healthy and is more work for you! BUT it will be worth it! The best way to make sure your kids develop those healthy eating habits is to start them young and lead by example! Yep, they’re looking to mom and dad/ grandma and grandpa to see what they should be eating.
Join our challenge groups for more tips with Clean Eating, Meal planning, and Meal prep for you and your family! Next TOTALLY FREE group starts April 11. Comment below or send me a message on my Facebook page. And everyone’s invited, so feel free to get some friends together and join us.