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DADKAJ SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 4
9/17/12 4:04 P

i do not have children myself but i have learned a lot about food and nutrition (studying bsc human nutrition). it has been found out that a child in average can refuse the new food about 15 times and on the 16th it can accept it. especially vegetables have a bitter taste so they are less favorable to kids. in fact, their taste preferences start to form when they are still in the mother. what she eats, the child is getting used to. i remember one mother who suddenly started to like eating broccoli when she was pregnant with her daughter. and when the daughter was weaned, it was usually the broccoli that disappeared from her plate straight into the stomach. quite unusual but logical. broccoli has a distinctive flavor of brassicas. many parents also do the mistake and feed their children with sweetened stuff, such as biscuits and ready made baby food, which often contains a lot of sugar and also some salt - that i read today in Food Science, Nutrition and Health from Fox and Cameron. my friend, when having her first child, she offered him a plain yogurt instead of the sweetened kids stuff. he drank tea without excess amounts of sugar and when he was given a piece of marshmallow, he chewed it a bit and left behind. she hardly ever bought him sweets and i can say she is a great mother. children even perceive meat as bitter until they get used to it.
so, based on this, as soon as possible a child should be introduced to real food, avoiding flavor enhancers and sweetened food stuffs, especially when we, humans, are programmed for sweeter taste as the mothers milk contains almost twice as much lactose than cows milk. and be persistent in offering the new foods to the child. once they will accept it, unless they have a really strong aversion to it, which is not the case of most of foods that the child initially refused.

PIKA1319 Posts: 130
9/17/12 10:17 A

I think Socal_Lee made the best suggestions.

You are the parent; therefore you are in control. Don't waste your time making things "cutesy" so the kid will eat it or expend a lot of extra effort "hiding" veggies/fruits in stuff. They'll eat when they get hungry.enough. Nothing a little discipline won't cure.

CSWEAT95 SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (1,985)
Posts: 6
9/13/12 12:06 A

I have a 35 year old "kid" (the Hubs. Lol) who doesn't much like his veggies, so I sneak them in to things he normally eats. Spaghetti sauce is a great way to add a ton of veggies, and you never know they're there. I puree up all kinds of them, and add them to the plain tomato sauce, and he gobbles it up like no bodies business. He says my sauce that's like Chef Boyardee. Which is a big deal to him because we don't eat processed/convenience foods any more and he LOVED canned ravioli. And he has no idea its loaded with goodness.

I also add things like lentils, chickpeas, quinoa, and pureed veggies to things like burgers and meat loaf. Or things like cauliflower to mashed potatoes.

And of course, ranch dressing is always a favorite for dipping. I make my own instead of using stuff out of a bottle, so I can make it healthier than store bought. And its delicious.

NANCYLS3 SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 2
9/10/12 5:32 P

When my kids were little I would stand up veggies in mashed potatoes(asparagus was a favorite tree to eat). My kids would be dinosaurs and had to roar and eat not using there hands. My kids now 23 & 22 still talk about eating asparagus this way.

Like other responders my kids loved to dip the broccoli in melted cheese(not to hot) and carrots in ranch dressing is still a favorite.

Good Luck and just remember to make it fun.

SOCAL_LEE SparkPoints: (43,325)
Fitness Minutes: (97,762)
Posts: 246
9/10/12 3:34 P

I love all the suggestions here for recipes and different things to eat. Just to add some strategies:

--keep serving a variety of food even if she doesn't eat something the first few times. And let her see you eating those foods with enjoyment!

--avoid making her a separate meal of "kid food"; have her eat what you eat.

--Ellyn Satter (child nutrition expert) says that parents get to prepare and serve the food; the children get to decide how much of it, and what parts, they're going to eat. So maybe you put four different things on her plate, and she eats two of them -- that's fine.

--don't let her fill up on snacks right before a meal, and don't let her have a bedtime snack if you think she's using that instead of dinner (that is, not eating dinner because she knows she'll get something she likes better in an hour).

--when my younger daughter doesn't finish a meal, we leave her plate on the table. When she comes back 30 minutes later saying "I'm hungry", she can finish the food she was served for lunch or dinner.

This blog, It's Not About Nutrition, has some good suggestions:


LINPHX Posts: 199
8/27/12 7:49 P

There are lots of good suggestions here already. My 5 kids are grown now, but they all loved dipping, There are lots of healthy dips you can make with plain greek yogurt, different flavored hummus and the old standby-- ranch dressing.

Another "trick" that worked for me was getting creative with various foods. For Halloween, I carved out a small pumpkin and made the "mouth" big enough to allow guacamole to spill out The kids (especially the boys) thought it was hilarious that the pumpking was "puking" and loved dipping the various vegetables in the "puke!

Another time I made a cheese ball and decorated with various veggies to look like a turkey for Thanksgiving.

A really easy thing is to make Elmo. Make a plate of grape or cherry tomatoes and fill 2 small portion cups (2 oz. or so) with dip. Top the dip with black olives for eyes and use baby carrots for a nose and raisins for a smiley mouth. The possibilities are endless and you can gear a snack to the likings of your child.

There is also the famous "ants on a log" or "ladybugs in the meadow. Fill celery stick with peanut butter/almond butter/nutella/cream cheese and top with a few raisins or dried cranberries.

Soups are another really easy way to include a wide assortment of vegetables into your childs diet.
I hope some of these suggestions have been helpful and that your toddler will learn to enjoy lots of vegetables as part of a healthy diet.

STEPHBO00 Posts: 2
8/27/12 5:08 P

My son is now 5 and he loves loves loves his veggies!! When he was 2 he asked me for some "candy" well candy is not something I have ever givin to my child so I went into the kitchen. Cut up some fresh broccoli and sauteed it in a little butter with garlic, salt, pepper, and a little seasoning salt. Oh I boiled it first. I put it in a bowl and told him it was candy. I tell u what that kid ate all of it and loved it. I started sauteeing his veggies for a little while but now he'll eat them anyway I make them!! Good luck and let us know what works for you :)

SWEETOLIVE126 SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (30)
Posts: 2
8/22/12 8:00 P

My kids love making kabobs with me (I do the spearing onto the sticks, not them, don't worry!) I get bowls of different meats, sausages, chicken, beef.. whatever I have on hand. And bowls of veggies.. They love being a part of the "process."

BARBAKOAR Posts: 328
8/22/12 1:09 P

Get together in the kitchen and make a cold vegetable Pizza.
Start out with a can of dough. Unroll the dough, but don't pull the triangle shapes apart. Instead push the seams together and bake on a baking sheet according to the package directions. Let the sheet of dough cool completely, then spread with some crème cheese (we like a vegetable or herb flavored one) and top with some thinly sliced raw veggies. Cut into squares and serve.

Make ants on a log, Celery stick with peanut butter on dotted with raisins or sultanas

Make a melon boat with a cocktail stick in with a slice of orange as the sail

Fruit kebabs with a lil bowl of strawberry jam melted in microwave for dipping

good luck !

VERONICA722 SparkPoints: (5,591)
Fitness Minutes: (1,212)
Posts: 346
8/21/12 12:03 P

start small.

try baby carrots or cut carrots into sticks.

cut cucumbers into sticks -- cool in summertime.

same with apples.

I wouldn't encourage dipping because it adds extra calories. some is ok.

KOMTRIA Posts: 1,063
8/11/12 7:09 A

Bake tofu fingers with garlic powder and mushroom soy sauce.
Chicken fingers.
Meat balls
Pinwheel sandwiches with cream cheese, sliced turkey, grated carrots.
Baked spaghetti in muffin pans.
Cut up fruit dipped in yogurt with honey.
Any beans seasoned and blended into a spread. Serve with pita pieces.
Mac and cheese.
Oven roasted veggies cut into manageable sizes
Brown rice and cheese bake.

MARYB1009 SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (90)
Posts: 21
8/11/12 4:53 A

I agree with Snoopy's post... my 2 year old niece loves to dip her food. Doesn't matter what she's eating (or what dip it is), if she can dip it in something, she's happy! Surprisingly, salsa is something a lot of kids like. Consider it with veggies rather than or in addition to a couple baked chips.

SNOOPY1960 Posts: 1,687
8/10/12 11:06 P

My kids love anything with a dip !! Make it something special, like on a fancy plate with a fancy bowl for the dip.

cut up veggies with ranch dressing

cut up veggies with hummus

veggies can be cooked or semi cooked (blanch for about 2 minutes for crisp tender )

celery is too stringy for a toddler.

think green beans, red, yellow or green bell pepper strips, baked sweet potato wedges, broccoli, cauliflower, cucumbers, etc etc

my 10 year old can eat an entire head of uncooked broccoli with Russian dressing !!!!

cut up fruit with yogurt for dipping

colorful fruit salad

Chances are if she sees you eating it , she will want some too !!

Edited by: SNOOPY1960 at: 8/10/2012 (23:08)
8/10/12 9:22 A

Hey, Im a mother of one who is 2. To me all she seems to eat are crackers, and cheese with some fruit in the mix. I was wondering if any one had ideas about how to get her to eat more varity of foods into her diet.

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