Note from Aloka : When Aradhana – a mom of a two year old boy – approached me to guest blog I liked the idea of a mom with different experiences who shares the same values when it comes to food. Since my son is not fussy getting him to eat well hasn’t been much of a challenge. This post gives you ideas to encourage eating well even if your child is fussy.
When my child was a toddler, I always trembled when it comes to meal time. I would prepare all the sensible meals which are thought to be healthy for him and make them appealing. Still, my son would end up carpeting the floor and splattering the dining table. I always worried why I had such a fussy eater. The secret I discovered is to take away all the focus from his eating habits.
The reality is you can’t make your kids unfussy. Commands, nagging, bribes, nothing would work in fact. This would totally have the opposite effect. The more you care them and give something to eat, they react against. I found out that presenting the food in creative ways would help. Although it involves a lot of patience and will power, making for your child will not hold you back.
Here are some simple ways I would like to share to get your fussy kids to eat their food without any mess.
1.Give a Nibble Tray:
It is usual that toddlers graze through their food, so I found a customized smorgasbord to be helpful. You can use a muffin tin or an ice cube tray to keep the bite size nutritious and colourful food items. Call them by playful names so that your kid will surely develop the interest to pick a bite. Here are a few ideas I found:
- Banana wheels
- Apple moons (thin slices)
- Avocado boats (quarter pieces)
- Broccoli trees
- Egg canoes (Boiled egg wedges)
- Carrot swords (thinly sliced)
Place these within your kid’s reach. My son used to play, run around the home, stop and then take a bite and again continue his way.
Dipping food is fun and messy too. Whenever I give my son a dip food, he would splatter the whole table but enjoyed the mess and the dipping. Some tasty dip ideas are:
- Pureed fruits and veggies
- Cottage cheese
- Peanut or almond butter
- Plain or sweetened yogurt
These dips serve a tasty combination with rice cakes, bell pepper strips, pear or apple slices or any nutritious platforms.
This is another great idea to make your fussy kid eat properly. Putting tasty and nutritious toppings on less desirable foods is another way to fussy eater’s menu. Here are some favorite toppings that any kid can like. Cream cheese, Greek yogurt, tomato sauce, peanut butter, applesauce and more. You can add these toppings to various healthy snacks. You can find a few of them here.
My son rather had another habit of preferring drinks than eating. With a lot of experiments, I found a tasty smoothie that he always loved to have. Any fruit plus milk blended along with egg powder, honey, peanut butter or Greek yogurt can be tasty. Give a straw to sip in the smoothie and your kid will love it!
Be cautious not to use raw eggs as it may lead to salmonella poisoning.
This is another wonderful idea that can help your kid. If he is too fussy about eating, invite another child who is of the same age of your kid. Try to know what the other child likes to eat. Now try to make the meal and give them both. Your kid will definitely catch on.
So, to avoid the tantrums around the dining table, it is good to make these above choices. They worked for me well in helping my kid get on to the healthy food routine.
So would you also include these ways for your child? Do not forget to share your ideas and experiences with us.
About the Writer: Aradhana Pandey is a passionate writer and loves to write on topics like parenting, wellness, health and lifestyle. She believes good health is the key to success and happiness. Through her writings she wants to motivate people to develop healthy habits and adopt natural ways of living to achieve sound health.
Image credit: http://terrificparenting.com/picky-eaters