Tips on How to get kids to eat veggies?
Most children have an aversion to at least a few vegetables. Some parents might call it picky eating, while others accept it as kids being kids.
The truth is that children have a scientific reason to hate at least a few vegetables that their taste buds perceive to be more bitter than ours do. Rejecting certain foods is also part of children's development stages. For example, children might refuse to eat certain foods when they want to exercise increased independence.
Here are a few tested tips from Troovy moms to help you tackle the phase of selectively eating vegetables. It all comes down to choosing between winning the battle of feeding them enough in the current meal and forgoing a few days’ or months’ worth of healthy eating to develop a good relationship with all food groups for life.
- Be consistent: Studies say it could take up to 15 exposures before a child begins to accept a particular food! It helps offer the food in different forms - for example, spinach in an omelet, as a dry vegetable with potatoes, as a wet vegetable with paneer, as an addition to dal, and even in pakoras.
- Be empathetic: Children have more taste buds than adults. They taste everything more intensely. That's why cruciferous vegetables like broccoli and cabbage taste disgusting to kids. These vegetables have some bitter oils that most adults don’t perceive as intensely.
- Involve your children in picking and cooking vegetables: This is the holy grail. Children are ten times more likely to taste something when they have helped choose and cook it. You could start them on their cooking journey with simple tasks like stirring and mixing.
- Your portion size is not equal to theirs: Children can get overwhelmed when they see significant quantities of food on their plates, especially if they are not so fond of it! Nobody wants anxiety over food, right? You could even let your child serve themselves, so they take as much as is comfortable.
- Stop measuring: As hard as it is, don’t worry if your child only ate one chapati or left most of the sabzi on their plates! Measuring food intake continuously and expecting children to finish entire portions takes away their independence and ability to listen to their bodies. It also makes mealtimes more stressful for children. Remember, there is no point in winning the battle for today’s meal but losing the war of making them develop a love for healthy food.
- Let your child get bored sometimes: This one is counter-intuitive, but the reality is that sitting and chewing food is kind of boring vs., say, running around the room. So if your child is generally not used to sitting and having a quiet conversation or simply getting bored, they might find it hard to finish their meals.
We hope these tips are helpful. We will be back with six more tips in our next post!
And while your children are growing their love for all veggies, you can try to pack their food with more veggies using Troovy Cheese Spread and Tomato Sauce. These products are made using 6+ vegetables of all colors, are super yummy, and fun to include in your child’s meal. One serving of Troovy Cheese Spread and Tomato Sauce delivers half a serving of vegetables.
What’s more? Troovy products come with playable Trump Cards with dragons who get their superpowers from veggies. Plus, a free subscription to books with epic adventures of these dragons that are sure to inspire a love for healthy food among your children. Cool, right?
We hope this was useful. If you want more nutrition tips, read our other blog posts! Here’s to always bringing our best to our children!