Getting Kids to Eat Healthy

There will be many issues over which you must battle with children, like safety and schoolwork. But food? Food can be something that sustains a family and brings its members together. If the family meal has become a family feud, then perhaps it’s time to shift gears and try a new approach when getting kids to eat healthy.


| January 9, 2012



Cleaner Plate Club 1-9-2012

Neophobia, or the unwillingness to eat unfamiliar foods, appears to reach a peak in early childhood and taper off in subsequent years. Try these smart eating tips to raise a healthy child.


Photo courtesy Storey Publishing (c)2010

Excerpted from The Cleaner Plate Club (c) by Beth Bader and Ali Benjamin, used with permission from Storey Publishing. The following excerpt can be found on Pages 18, 60, 61, 87 and 88. 

There will be many issues over which you must battle with children, like safety and schoolwork. But food? Food can be something that sustains a family and brings its members together. If the family meal has become a family feud, then perhaps it’s time to shift gears and try a new approach when getting kids to eat healthy.

• Kid-Friendly Vegetarian Recipe: Tarragon, Red Grape and Ricotta Salata Salad 

Getting Kids to Eat Vegetables: Tips to Triumph over Vegephobia

LOOKS MATTER. Sometimes it is all about presentation. When vegetables are colorful, attractive, and fun, kids enjoy them more. For younger children, making “salad faces” on a plate, arranging carrot sticks like a burst of sunshine, or using a cookie cutter to make star-shaped red pepper bites can be a creative way to get past the “just one bite” barrier. As kids get older, adding special touches—garnishes, colorful plates, or other festive elements—can be the difference between a grimace and a grin.

JUST DIP IT. Like raccoons in the wild, kids have some kind of crazy attraction toward dunking their food before eating it. Use this behavior to your advantage by offering cut vegetables with healthful dips. Use anything from a natural ranch dressing to homemade Fig Balsamic Vinaigrette (page 95), Lima Bean Hummus (page 239), or White Bean-Pesto Dip (page 240).

TRY AGAIN. AND AGAIN. Repeated offerings are the key to preparing a child to try a new food. Prepare an item different ways; there’s a good chance that, with time, you will find one that works.





mother earth news fair

MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR

Oct. 21-22, 2017
Topeka, KS.

More than 150 workshops, great deals from more than 200 exhibitors, off-stage demos, inspirational keynotes, and great food!

LEARN MORE