In the last newsletter we looked at ways to help motivate children to eat more veggies, including setting a good example, getting kids involved with the preparation, and encouraging them to grow big and strong by eating more vegetables. 

Here are some more tips & tricks for getting in those leafy greens:

1. Let Them Play with Their Food—
This goes against conventional wisdom, but creating a fun, positive eating environment goes a long way towards helping children eat more healthfully.  Try creating meals with foods of different shapes and colors that kids can arrange into smiley faces, rainbows or stars. 

Pretend that the broccoli florets are miniature trees that need to be cleared away and eaten by elephants, dinosaurs or bulldozers. 
Or ask your children what kind of animal would eat what they are eating.  “Would a horse eat this carrot?”

2. Sauce is Good Stuff—
Kids like having stuff to dip their food in.  Whether it’s applesauce, ranch dressing, cheese sauce or yogurt, a dipping sauce makes things more delicious and is fine for helping encourage kids to branch out and try new things.

3. Don’t Give Up—
Research shows that it can take dozens of exposures to a food before a child accepts it.  I recommend instituting a “one bite rule” at home. 
If your child doesn’t like it, you can tell them, “It’s OK.  Your taste buds aren’t ready for that yet.  You can try it again next time.”

Return to Part I