One thing that we’ve noticed at our day care centres in the Perth area is that the kids who eat healthier foods seem to get a “head start” on those who don’t. They tend to be more calm and balanced. We know that kids, if left to their own devices, would rather eat sugar all day, but it is in your best interest to get them to prefer fruits and vegetables over prepackaged snacks.
We know: easier said than done. But there are some things you can do to help your child be more amenable towards vegetables.
Be a Good Role Model
Whether you like it or not, you are a role model to your child. Children mirror the behaviours of their parents. Good or bad, whenever your child is around you, you are a role model. You can model healthy habits or unhealthy habits. For the sake of this discussion, if your child sees you eating vegetables as snacks and healthy portions at meals and knows that you like them, they will try to mimic your behaviour.
The Food Pyramid
Show your child the food pyramid. Tell them they will grow up to be big and strong if they eat some of everything every day, including vegetables. Ironically enough, this is a variation of the “carrot on a string” technique, showing your child that it is in their self-interest to eat vegetables.
Let your child go shopping with you and pick some vegetables out. They will be more likely to eat them if they had some “sayso” in the process of choosing them.
Always keep vegetables in the fridge for snacks. This can be something that requires little preparation such as cherry tomatoes, green beans or carrots.
Add to Comfort Foods
Put tomatoes and broccoli on top of pizza. A slice of tomato and lettuce works great on any sandwich except maybe peanut butter.
Contact Cuddles Childcare Centres to learn more.