Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Ideas for Getting Your Child to Eat

Getting Your Kids to Eat

The other day, Uncle Eric came over for a visit as he often does. Being the good hosts that The Kids are, they offered him some of what they were snacking on. You know, typical four year old food, chives from the garden. Yes, you read that correctly.

The Kids Snack on Chives.

This isn’t the first time that someone, including Uncle Eric has mentioned that The Kids are good eaters and/or eat weird things. Personally, I never really thought about it because it’s never been an issue for us. However, I know lots of people that fight with their kids to get them to eat anything that isn’t pasta and/or has colour.

I don’t know what the secret is but, if I did, I would share it. Right after I patented it.

Having said that, there are some conscious decisions that we’ve made as parents as it relates to our kids and food. I make no claims that this will work for you or even that it did for us.

Ideas for Getting Your Child to Eat.

  1. Encourage Them to Try One Bite. I say many truths and untruths to get The Kids to try one bite. I might have even said that “Barney loves it” and/or “Only big kids eat [insert food]”. Bottom line, they won’t know if they like it until they try it. The look of pleasure they get on their face when they try a bite (even if they don’t like it) is priceless.

  2. Lead by Example. As previously mentioned, Barney has gotten The Kids to try many of bite of things. Sometimes, just seeing how much we love it is enough to get them to try that one bite and you wishing that they never did.

  3. Don’t Say They Don’t Like It. If others ask me if The Kids like pate, instead of saying “Oh, they don’t like it” (even if they don’t), I try and remember to say “I’m not sure, why don’t you ask them”. More often than not they try a bite. They like to own the right to choose what they eat. I think The Kids eat chives because no one ever told them that they weren’t supposed to like them.

  4. Grow it. The Kids have been helping me with the garden for three years now. There’s something about planting, weeding and then picking the fruit that makes them want to eat it.

  5. Watch a Video intended for this Purpose. Almost two years ago, I won a DVD video called Copy Kids. I was so impressed with the results that I wrote an unsolicted review.

  6. Everything in Moderation. A cookie for breakfast here and there never hurt a child (assuming they don’t have health issues). Have a tea party and a cookie (or two) yourself.

  7. Don’t Make a Big Deal About it. Put a little bit of everything on their plate. When they look at you like you just grew horns, tell them you thought they liked it. Play cool. Maybe they’ll try it next time.

    Do NOT offer them anything that you don’t want to share. Trust me, I learned this the hard way. Look at what happened to my caviar…

Have Any Secrets for Getting your Child to Eat?

Disclosure: Journeys of The Zoo was compensated several years ago for posts associated with Copy-Kids (as referenced in #5). However, the link in this post was an unsolicited review and we were not compensated for mentioning the company again in this post.

19 thoughts on “Ideas for Getting Your Child to Eat

  1. Rene

    Baby steps and let them choose what to eat from what you provide. We started having burritos (aka ‘tacos’) around here. First couple of times, rice and cheese were the only filling options chosen. Now we are up to rice, corn, cheese, chicken, guacamole, and sour cream – a fave meal now!
    (but both kids loving guac, I wish I hadn’t shared. Not as expensive as caviar, but still….)

  2. Elva Roberts

    I love your post . I think your comments and tips are really good. If only healthy foods are eaten in the home and, occasionally snacks; and if parents do not make a ‘big deal’ out of finishing their food, there is seldom a serious problem. Thank you for these excellent tips.

  3. Elva Roberts

    I love your post . I think your comments and tips are really good. If only healthy foods are eaten in the home and, occasionally snacks; and if parents do not make a ‘big deal’ out of finishing their food, there is seldom a serious problem. Thank you for these excellent tips.

  4. Elaine Buonsante

    I really agree that encouraging the kids to eat one bite and then it’s up to them if they want any more is a great strategy. My 9 year old granddaughter has found that yes, she really does like salmon. When we have stir fry she can chose the veggies that she likes and often tries others.

  5. Wanda Tracey

    I really enjoyed reading this and I do believe that growing your own food really helps kids to experiment and try the foods they helped to grow.I actually did this with my children when they were little.I also think that letting them try bites of this and that help too.They are pretty good at experimenting.Thank for the great review.

  6. Cheryl Grandy

    We’ve been fortunate that it’s never been difficult to get our kids to eat. Because they eat most things, we’ve never made a big deal about getting them to eat things they don’t want to eat – or maybe it’s because we don’t make a big deal about it, that they are willing to eat most things. However it happened, it hasn’t been a problem in our family.

  7. Debbie S.

    I think your ideas are perfect, especially don’t encourage negative talk about foods around kids. I’m seeing my grandson not like foods that others don’t like! Excellent post Sarah!

  8. md Kennedy

    My mother was impossible when she was a kid (no peas!!!!) so when she had us she was very careful and we ate practically everything. Now she is challenged with her grandkids (my nieces and nephews) who eat frozen food at home. What goes around comes around!

  9. Kirsten

    Great ideas!
    i try to encourage my kids to try new foods. Some days it’s tough. I always make sure to serve something that they like with a meal so that there’s something familiar on their plate.

  10. HEIDI C.

    I have four picky eaters and I would have to say that your last point is so important. I try to be encouraging and enthusiastic instead of being forceful and getting angry. The last thing I would ever want is for my kids to develop food issues…

  11. Laurie P

    Someone turned into a picky eater this week. I can get her to eat SOME if I set her up with her plate just like the adults at the table. Especially if I give her a regular fork.
    Great tips! Looking forward to teaching her about growing food, next summer!

  12. Peady

    Excellent suggestions.

    The little video is adorable!

    I really want to grow some of our food. I know my Things are terrific eaters and will try lots of different foods, but I want to show them just how much work it takes to grow a carrot, you know?

    Lovely post!
    Peady recently posted…Always Wear SunscreenMy Profile


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