Many children go through some unpleasant phases—and one of the most frustrating is the picky eating phase. We asked our Facebook audience to share their stories: children who avoid sauces at all costs, children who exclusively eat mac and cheese, children who (of course!) won’t touch anything that’s green. So how do you make sure they’re getting nutrients and not go crazy cooking multiple meals a night to satisfy everyone’s dietary habits? Answer below.
Here’s some good tricks to try:
1. Let them pick the recipes. Ask them to go through a cookbook and flag a few recipes they’d be willing to try. By allowing them to be part of the process, you may find they are more willing to open their minds to a new meal.
2. Bring in the big kids. There’s something about the older cousin or friend that makes kids behave—they want to impress them and mimic their every move. When they see the big kids eating the vegetables and sauces, they’ll succumb to a little positive peer pressure.
3. Push the limits of their favorite foods. If they love grilled cheese, try working in new cheeses or ingredients slowly to show them different flavors they actually like. Ask them to smell the spices in the spice drawer, and choose their favorite to add to their snack. Slowly, they’ll realize there are more foods in the world that they enjoy.
4. Look away. Ask them to try a sauce or a side dish, and then look away. Kids can sense you watching them and wanting them to try a new food.
5. I add veggies to everything! Pasta sauces, Mac n cheese, soups and burger patties- you name it, it has hidden veggies.
What tricks do you use?
Written by Chris Casamassa
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Sensei Chris Feldt is the owner and chief instructor of Samurai Karate Studio, a leadership academy located in Northeast Columbia, South Carolina. His school teaches karate to children and adults ages 4 and up. SKS specializes in self-defense, anti-bullying, stranger danger and character and leadership development.
Mr. Feldt was an adjunct professor at the University of South Carolina for college credit in karate and self-defense.
Samurai Karate Studio has been recognized as a leader in martial arts instruction by being honored with the Best of Columbia Award for four consecutive years in a row.
Sensei Feldt has been a guest speaker in the Richland 2 School District covering school talks on stranger danger, anti-bullying strategies, kindness, and making good choices. He is available for both private and corporate self-defense seminars.