Feeding our children the right foods is an important part of keeping them healthy and helping them to develop in the right way. Vegetables are a great source of the vitamins and minerals we all need to stay healthy. As we begin to understand the essential role of vegetables as adults, we begin to develop a taste for them. With kids it’s different. Getting them to eat vegetables let alone have a desire to eat them can be tricky.
There are some things you can do to help kids take more interest in vegetables served as snacks or with meals. Below are some tips we encourage you to follow, especially if you have kids that have a hard time eating vegetables:
Be the Example
As always, your kid’s good habits start by watching what you do. If you want them to eat more vegetables, be sure you are eating them yourself. It never hurts to talk to your kids about why eating vegetables is important while you’re eating them. This helps them to gain a better understanding of what healthy foods are.
Use Fresh Vegetables
If your goal is to make eating vegetables more appealing, be sure to have vegetables at home that are fresh and are in season. Not only are fresh vegetables at their peak flavor, but they also tend to cost less.
Have Vegetable Snacks Ready to Go
When your child is ready for snack, they are much more likely to choose vegetables when the vegetables are prepared and ready to go. Vegetables that are tucked into the crisper drawer and are unpeeled are not the most appetizing foods for kids. Prepare them in advance and put them front and center in the fridge.
Get Your Children Involved
At mealtime, allow your children to help pick and prepare which vegetable will be served. Depending on their age, they can help prepare by cleaning, peeling and cutting vegetables. It’s also a good idea to let kids get involved in choosing vegetables at the grocery store.
Introduce More Vegetables at Mealtime
If you’re really looking to make a change, try introducing vegetables as part of the main dish for your family meals. Try a vegetable stir-fry or a veggie pizza. You may not be able to get away with this for every meal, but the more you add vegetables to your meals, the more your children will develop a taste for them.
Don’t be too hard on yourself if it takes a while for your kids to develop an appreciation for vegetables. It may take much longer for some than others. Just know that every attempt is a step in the right direction.