With a lot of food choices available in the market, choosing the right type of food for your child can be quite tricky. There’s food that you can conveniently pop into the microwave for a warm meal, and there is always the choice of ordering food from takeout.
But are these options really the best way your child can have the nutrition they need?
Being healthy is not just for your child’s physical development. It also helps them maintain their ideal weight and protects them from disorders that are caused by vitamin deficiencies.
- Go on a diet plan.
Kids require a combination of carbohydrates, protein, and fiber in their diet. See each meal as a whole picture rather than focusing on each individual food item.
Think of it this way, your child’s meal must have half of the plate filled with fruits or vegetables, one fourth should have protein, and the remaining one quarter should be for carbohydrates.
- Be their example to live by.
Children are encouraged to try out new things when they see a parent or guardian is doing it already. They accept it as part of the norm that should be followed.
To encourage them, fill your plate with the same portions that they have. If they see otherwise, they might think that having to eat vegetables is a form of punishment.
- Be creative and explore possibilities.
The reason why children are a bit pickier when selecting food compared to adults is that their palate is quite sensitive especially to bitter food items (such as certain vegetables).
This is a good thing because it serves as a protection from ingesting poisonous or harmful objects. Eventually, as your children age, their taste palate changes as well, and they will be able to adapt to eating a variety of food.
But that doesn’t mean you have to wait for them to get older before giving them vegetables.
Try masking the bitter taste by making shakes, or including ground up veggies when you make meatballs or patties for burgers!
- Prefer making home cooked meals over takeout.
Sure, cooking meals at home need a lot more time and preparation, but it gives other benefits than just making food healthier. It serves as family bonding time and it encourages children to get involved with food preparation.
- Don’t force your child to finish the whole plate.
Again, this could register the idea that eating vegetables is a form of punishment. The trick is to give them limited options.
Say, “would you like five pieces or three pieces of broccoli?” They would opt to pick three, but the point is they have had their portion of healthy greens.
Baby Steps Daycare / Preschool has a curriculum that will help your child grow holistically. To inquire about enrollment, give us a call at 718-559-8717.