How to Raise Less Picky Kids

Your child’s nutrition can be a sensitive topic if you live with picky kids. As a parent, it is easy to worry about what your kids are eating and whether they are getting the right nutrients. Luckily, there are ways to avoid or reverse a child’s picky habits! 

Don’t Force Them

To help establish good food habits with your children in the first place, do not force them to eat. If they are not hungry, do not make them have a snack or a meal. Happy Healthy Eating For Kids says that if there is a new food that you want your child to try, offer them a small bite and tell them what it tastes like, or why you like that particular food. Forcing your child to eat something can cause them to associate that food with negative emotions like being controlled. You want your children to have a positive association with mealtimes and food itself, so don’t make them do anything that makes them uncomfortable.

Introduce Vegetables Early

A great strategy to ensure you don’t raise a kid who will only eat a few different foods is to introduce vegetables to your child early in their life. Start by setting a good example for your little ones by eating vegetables yourself. Introduce your child to vegetables in the form of baby food, and then as soon as they start eating solid food in small, manageable bites for them. According to Stellar Kids, green vegetables like spinach and broccoli help counteract acidic foods in your child’s diet. Serving vegetables that have been cooked different ways may be more enticing to your child than raw vegetables. Baking or air frying vegetables can also make them crunchy like snacks they may enjoy. 


Be Patient 

When kids begin to try new foods, they may do so with some hesitancy. They may want to smell it, lick it, or take very small bites because they are a bit scared of the unknown. AG Research News says it’s best to be patient with your child, and allow them to do these things with food including spitting it all the way out. Give your child new foods alongside their favorite foods to create positive associations. It may take time, but they may find new foods that they love if you give them the chance to explore.

If you are still concerned about your child’s diet, reach out to their pediatrician for more advice. They will be able to let you know whether your child’s growth is on track and what you can do if there is room for improvement. Last, try cooking with your kids to get them excited about new recipes and foods!

Read this next: Health Milestones Your Kids Shouldn’t Miss

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