Is your child a picky eater? It’s probably a phase that will pass soon, but these tips will help you convince your child to eat healthy foods until then:
1. Set the example. Want your child to try a food they’re initially put off by? Show them how much you enjoy the taste of the food yourself.
2. Let your child participate in the kitchen. When your child feels more involved in the preparation of the food, they’re more likely to enjoy the rewards.
3. Give your child time. It might take a few tries before your child starts to appreciate a new food. Wait a few days, and then offer the same food to them again.
4. Let your child take part in grocery shopping. Let them feel like active participants in shopping for family meals.
5. Use kid-friendly flavors. Your child might be more open to trying broccoli if you pour a little cheese on top, or maybe they’ll jump at eating squash with a sprinkle of cinnamon.
6. A little at a time. A pile of vegetables may seem overwhelming. But a spoonful might be just enough to get started.
7. Use your imagination. Prepare food with a sense of fun. Cut fruit into star shapes, or use peas and carrots to make a funny face in mashed potatoes.
Sources: Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics; American Academy of Pediatrics; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention