Food Wise: Fruit as a Reward

| 10/24/2008 4:50:35 PM

My sister has spent a significant amount of time teaching her children to eat well, first by nursing them with no supplemental formula, then by giving them only wholesome foods and taking them along to the grocery store and her local farmer’s market in the Philadelphia area.

When I visited them last week, I wasn’t surprised to see that she had chosen to reward my niece with an all natural lollipop every time she used the potty instead of her cloth diapers. My niece had seen her cousins eat lollipops and my sister thought it was a matter of time before she started asking what they were; she decided to be the one to give them to her.

The lollipops were all natural, but as candy, they were full of added sugar. After only her second lollipop, ever, my sweet niece started asking for them and reacted with a small tantrum when told no; the lollipops were quickly removed from the house.

My sister had been using this 100 percent organic fruit roll ups from FruitaBu to reward her, and she went back to them after the lollipop incident. But while I was there, we ran out of the pressed fruit, and I opted to give her five organic grapes, her favorite fruit, instead. She liked her reward, and she has yet to throw a tantrum for wanting to eat fruit or the fruit roll ups.

What is the most challenging thing you’ve encountered while trying to keep your children eating healthy?

Olivia Blanco Mullins is a journalist and has been eating healthy most of her life, as her parents have owned health food stores for more than 20 years. Currently she lives in Manhattan, Kansas, where her husband owns an Italian restaurant.