Convincing the Kids

So you are thinking of adapting a healthier lifestyle?  Convincing the kids can be a daunting task.  I get it.  I have toddlers.  I know they can be a tough crowd when it comes to healthy eating.  However, they can be taught.  Here are a few things that helped our family with my 3 year old.  Even now I am not saying it is always easy, but we have made progress.

1. Start them young.  If they are not introduced to junk food early on, they will probably be more likely to make healthy choices.  My 3 year old happily eats whole grain bread because she was never given a choice of white bread.  I was not raised on soda and I have never liked it.  We also reserve juice for only special occasions like birthday parties.

2.  Have them help in the shopping and with the preparation of  food.  When we are at the store, I let my daughter pick out the fruits and veggies that she wants.  Also, she helps me prep the food and very often, she will be munching on veggies the whole time.

3.  Hide “healthy” choices in their food.  Such as brown rice or quinoa pasta in place of white.  Or in baked goods I always bake with whole grains instead of white flours.  She usually can’t tell the difference.  You also can sneak veggies into a smoothie or in homemade pasta sauce.

4  Make some of their favorite foods healthier.  You can do baked chicken fingers, baked sweet potato fries and homemade mac and cheese with whole grain pasta.

5.  Offer the same healthy food more than once.  We had always offered my daughter tofu and she never ate it.  Today she finally tried it and liked it!  Every time she ends up liking a food she was afraid to try, I make a HUGE deal out of it and show her that sometimes you have to try new things before you realize what you like.

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