As a parent, it can be a challenge to coax your child into eating healthy food at mealtime. Luckily, with the right approach, you can ensure that they have a well-balanced diet without having to fight them for it. Here are some tips for parents of children who are picky eaters.
1. Ask Your Child’s Opinion
You can’t let your toddler pick exactly what you eat for dinner, or you might have ice cream every night of the week. However, you can always ask your child for their opinion. It’s okay to ask your child if they would prefer spaghetti and meatballs or meatloaf. They will feel like they had a say, making them more willing to eat dinner.
You should also give your child a say in when they eat. It’s okay for a child to listen to their body and not eat until they are hungry. However, it’s best to avoid sweets or snacks until a healthy meal is eaten. The kitchen should also be off-limits at a certain time of night.
2. Avoid Bribery
It comes to a point where you will do just about anything to get your kid to eat their food. You might even consider bribing them into eating with money or other rewards. There are a couple of reasons why this might not be a great idea. First, your child does not deserve a reward for being difficult at dinner. Second, they will only continue to hold out until they get their reward.
3. Set an Example
Your child learns behavior from you. If you don’t eat your asparagus, you can’t expect your toddler to eat their asparagus. Set a good example when it comes to eating, at least in front of your kid.
4. Try and Try Again
Tastes change as we get older. Even if your toddler didn’t enjoy something when they were 2, they may like it in elementary school. Try again. You can even try to change the food a bit. For example, you can pour cheese on top of broccoli to see if that makes it more appetizing.
Many kids are picky eaters. Show understanding by providing options, but keep healthy options in mind. You need to ensure that your child is getting the nutrients they need from their food. If you’re looking for other health tips or need to schedule a doctor’s visit, you can contact us for a telehealth appointment.
Do you have more questions about keeping your picker eater healthy in Salem Oregon? Contact our friendly staff at WFMC Health or become a new patient today!