Eating vegetables is never a kids favorite thing. But with this important food group containing tons of vitamins, minerals, and fiber, it is something our kids can’t go without. For some kids, they have nutrition gaps so large that a doctor may even recommend taking daily supplements to keep them healthy. Authority Reports can help to compare the different brands of supplements to ensure your child is getting the best. However, if you are still set on getting your kids to eat their veggies, try our tips and tricks for getting them to love their vegetables.
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Use Segmented Plates
One study done in a preschool split children into two groups during lunch time. The first group used segmented plates, with places for every food group. Each segment also had a picture of which food should go there. The other group used plain white plates. Children were allowed to serve themselves from family style bowls of the various lunch dishes. After three days, the groups switched which plates they ate off of. At the end of the study, it was found that when kids used plain plates they ate an average of only around 20 grams of vegetables, or the equivalent of three baby carrots. Eating off the segmented plates with pictures, however, caused the amount of eaten vegetables to go up to more than 28 grams, an increase of nearly 40%!
Blend Them Up
If you’ve tried everything and your kids won’t touch any vegetable, no matter what, try blending them up and hiding them in other recipes. Offer an apple and banana smoothie for dessert, with some hidden carrot. Or blend up peppers and onions into a soupy mixture and pour it into tomato sauce for pasta. Your kids will start getting the nutrients they need, without knowing they’re eating veggies. Once you’ve introduced these new vegetables through these new recipes, slowly start to share your “secret ingredients” with your kids. Once they realize they’ve been eating vegetables for a long time, they will be more open to trying new things.
Institute A Must Try Policy
This could be great not just for vegetables, but for anything! When sitting down to dinner, if there is something new on the table, whether a new recipe, a new vegetable, or just a new sauce for pasta, don’t accept an automatic “I don’t like it” from you children. Explain to them that they should always try everything offered. If afterwards, they still truly do not like it, then accept their taste preferences and allow them to make another choice. By having this policy that they should try everything, it opens them up to be a less picky eater in the rest of their life as well.
Follow Your Own Example
If you are telling kids to eat more vegetables or to try new foods, you should also be willing to do the same. This starts even earlier than you think! One study showed that women who ate green vegetables while pregnant often had children who liked green vegetables more than those who did not have mothers that ate greens during pregnancy. Even once your kids are born, introduce them to vegetables early, and make sure they see you eating vegetables as well.
Eating The Rainbow
We all know getting our kids to eat their vegetables is difficult. So, instead of fighting with them, make it fun. Both fruits and vegetables come in all colors of the rainbow, so if you kids are into competitions, see who can eat more natural colors. Red strawberries, an orange orange, yellow peppers, green spinach, blueberries, and purple carrots are all great ways to add fun to your food. Remember, this doesn’t count for things like blue gummy worms or purple lollipops! Each color of fruits and vegetables offer different needed vitamins and minerals, so this trick can really help make vegetables fun for your kids!
Overall, eating should be a fun experience, no matter what food you are tasting. By following these tips and tricks, you can turn eating vegetables from a chore into fun! After just a few new vegetables, soon you’ll see that your child is asking for veggies all on their own!