Little kids typically turn their noses up at the sight of green veggies on their plates. However, as a parent, you know your little darling needs his/her nutrition to grow and develop.
So, how do you stop the dinner table tantrums at mealtimes? And, how do you get him/her to eat veggies and like them at the same time?
If such questions are bothering you, we're here to give a few tips on how to address this issue. Here are some of the easy, tried and tested tricks that you can employ:
1. Start Early:
If you want your kid to take a liking to various fruits and veggies, begin by introducing him/her to these things early, that is, when he/she begins to discover food.
Six months on, let your baby have his/her first taste of solid food. Try cooked and pureed carrots or apples. Little ones have an aversion to bitter-tasting foods, which, sadly, includes most greens.
So, the next time you feed your baby some spinach, follow it up with some mashed peaches. Your little one will be conditioned to like bitter-tasting foods, since sweet flavour follows.
It also makes your life much easier, as your kid grows and does not throw a fit at green veggies, since he/she now does not disapprove of those flavours.
2. Make Food Look More Interesting:
Presentation is essential in the art of cooking. Sloppily lumping food on the plate is not appealing to your little angel's eye. Also, with greens, you have to take an extra effort to make them look beautiful, colourful and edible.
Since you are putting so much of effort in preparing meals for your family, go that extra mile and make it look more delectable too. You will notice that gradually your little one will stop poking his/her food, but will rather pick it up and happily chomp on it.
3. Make Meal Times Fun:
It is well-known fact that kids follow their parents' habits and mannerisms. So, the best way to teach your little one about eating all kinds of food is by letting him/her see how you approach food.
Ask him/her to join you at mealtimes and let him/her watch you enjoy your food. Also, keep your children close to you in the kitchen and let them see you cook.
They will not only learn to like cooking, but will also develop a positive attitude towards all kinds of food. Sometimes, make fun-food games where you set a colour theme for food and follow through on it.
For example, you can focus on reds and ensure that most veggies and fruits that your child eats through the day are red.
4. Introduce Variety:
It is important to keep it exciting, since kids get easily bored. So, mix it up, even with food. If your little one has had beetroot one day and it seems that he/she likes it, don't just serve him/her beets.
After a day or two, let your children taste an avocado and decide if they like its texture and flavour. It is important to introduce one food item at a time, as it helps to narrow down on a particular food that your little one might be allergic to.
But, add good variety to food, since it will contribute to load on different nutrients that are essential for a healthy growth.
5. Don't Give Up:
If there is a certain veggie that your little one spat out the first time, there is no reason not to serve it again. Give that particular veggie a few more trials and help your little one to develop a liking for the flavour.
It is highly unlikely that greens are favourable due to their bitter taste. However, they are important because of the nutritional quotient. So, continue serving greens to your little one, so that he/she acquires a liking to them.
6. Remember, Nothing Is Impossible:
Getting your children to like something that they don't is very difficult, but it is not impossible. You have to be persistent and patient with your kid, and you will be certainly rewarded.
Your little angel will no longer be leaving behind food that he/she does not like, and you can rest easy knowing that he/she is getting an adequate nutrition out of it.