Dealing with a Picky Eater
Dealing with a Picky Eater? Here are 5 Ways to Get Your Kids to Try New Foods. Many parents know that getting children at any age to try new foods can be a struggle. However, it’s important that kids get a variety of healthy foods in their diet to meet their nutritional needs.
Here, 5 ways to introduce new foods without a fight.
1. Turn Dinner Time into Story Time. Get kids interested in food by teaching them about what people around the world eat. Read about food-based professions, and watch cooking shows with your children. Make cooking exciting, and your kids will be more interested in trying new foods.
2. Play With Your Food. Yes, throw out that old rule! Try sorting brightly colored foods into groups by color. Make “fruit stamps” out of strawberries and apples. Change the focus from forcing your kids to eat new foods, and make it fun.
3. Be encouraging. Do you tell people “my kid is a picky eater”? Kids pick up on everything, including your attitude towards their eating habits. Flip the script, and use positive language like “my child is trying new foods”. This language recognizes the potential for change while validating your child’s feelings.
4. Be a Good Example. Do you insist on your child trying new foods, but always eat the same thing yourself? If you complain about eating your veggies, or refuse to eat certain things, you cannot expect your child to do any differently. Be excited about new foods, and your kids will follow in your lead!
5. Grow a Garden. If you have the space, consider starting a garden. If not, see if there is a community garden that you can participate in. Growing a garden is a good family activity, and kids will be more excited to eat produce that they themselves have grown.
Still dealing with a picky eater? Consider meeting with our health coaches or Pediatric Registered Dietitian. They can help with meal planning, introducing new foods, and creating a diet that meet your child’s individual nutritional needs.
Dr. Karen Leibowitz
Health and Medical Coach