In part one and two of this series I shared some of Lucian’s rather funny and sometimes not so funny eating habits and some general tips to help create good eating habits. For the final installment I will share some eating tips we’ve learned along with the way.
How do we get our kids to eat vegetables?
We don’t really. I wish I could say that my boys eat veggies all the time and love ’em but the truth is we have to work every day to try and get them into their diet. Here is what works for us:
- V8 and Juicy Juice Harvest Surprise. We don’t give our kids more than one serving of juice a day (and sometimes not even that) but we try to make those count by giving them Juicy Juice Harvest Surprise which also has a serving of vegetables. Lucian is also a huge fan of tomato soup so my hubby let him try V8 and he LOVES it. He asks for it by name, B8. 🙂 He usually has a serving every other day.
- We hide vegetables by sneaking them into dishes where they aren’t as noticeable.
- Lead by example. We try to eat vegetables with our meals and encourage them but don’t force it. (This only sometimes works.) We try to keep dinner time fun.
- When Lucian asks for more of anything at dinner, bread for example, we will ask him to eat another bite of veggies first. We don’t bribe with treats but it works for just something else we are serving at dinner. I love that he is finally at the age where we can negotiate.
- Serve baby food. Sounds crazy but even past the age of two we gave veggies in baby food form to Lucian. He likes them so much more and some vegetables that I rarely serve, like squash, gets into his diet. It might seem strange but why not? It is like applesauce to him and get another serving of vegetables! A great one is Gerber Organic Apples and Sweet Potatoes.
How do we get Lucian to try new foods?
Lucian has become a huge fan of Dr. Seuss and can often be heard quoting lines from Green Eggs and Ham. So a couple of weeks ago we made major progress by using this story. By encourage him to try foods we know he should like but he wouldn’t even try, I tried using the book. “You don’t like them so you say. Try them and you may. Try them and you may I say.” Lucian took to that right away and tried them and replied, “I do, I like them. I like them Sam-I-am!” It was awesome. He’s been gobbling up mashed potatoes ever since and is more open to trying new foods,especially when we quote the lines. Thank you Dr, Seuss!
What do you serve as a snack?
My boys love fruit. I haven’t yet found a fruit that they don’t really like which really works to my advantage. I serve a lot of cut up grapes, apples, mandarin oranges, canned fruit, raisins applesauce, etc. We love the organic fruit strips by Archer Farms (a Target brand). They come in a package of 10 for around $3 and there are lots of great flavors. I actually have to limit their fruit intake because their poor butts can’t take a lot.We also serve a lot of yogurt, cheese, granola bars, crackers, etc. We really do limit sugar intake.
We give daily vitamins as well to help make up for any deficiencies. We know we aren’t perfect and that our boys could eat even healthier but I do think they are healthier than the average kid and we try our best to have a balance of good nutritious food and a splurge now and then.
What tips have you discovered work for your child? Please feel free to share!