Most of the toddlers and pre-schooler are picky eater making it a battle for the parents to make them eat. As long as they are active and are in the right weight band, parents need not worry. As parents we are always woprried about the nutrition deficiency in the food as they are picky eater. Here are few tips to make them eat more variety /nutritious food.
- Motivate them to eat by telling them how one of their favorite stars / sports person / cartoon character loves to eat that particular variety of food. Children generally love to imitiate the stars / characters they love eg. Popeye eating spinach. Actually this was my pediatricians idea to make Ben 10 / spiderman eat a particular variety of food so that kids will ask for that and start eating ( If your kid loves a specific character let me know the character and food, I will post a pic of the character eating the food for your child )
- Prepare the meal according to the kids taste . If the kid loves spicy food then make the chicken with spice, if they love cheese then add cheese to it. If the child loves chicken then include vegetables like carrot, peas etc in a chicken recipe.Try different way of serving it with the kids choice of dips / spreads
- Establish regular meal and snack times, toddlers and preschoolers need to eat about every 2 to 3 hours. Don’t offer anything besides water between meals and snacks – this allows your child to get hungry.
- Serve cut fruits and vegetables for snacks and cut them in interesting shapes they like.
- Involve your child(ren) in shopping groceries, meal planning / cooking, and growing fruits / vegetables in your garden (which kids love!). Your child is more likely to eat and enjoy something he/she was involved in.
- Teach the nutritional value and benefits of each type of food that your child eats.
- If the child refuses to eat what is served, do not get her something else to eat. It’s okay to have him/her wait until the next scheduled meal or snack to eat (no more than 2 to 3 hours later).