Written for Dr. Thornburg Wellness By Shelly Stauber, The Medicinal Gourmet
Helping your child create a healthy balance between what he or she wants to eat and what is actually healthy is easier to achieve than you may believe. There are simple ways to improve the balance! If you have a picky eater, try implementing some of these tips to get your child more accustomed to the idea of eating healthy foods.
Involve your child in selecting fresh fruits and vegetables at the grocery store while engaging them in an open discussion about what is healthy and what may not be as healthy. This will empower them to make healthier food choices!
Take a proactive approach to your child’s hungry moments. Snacking is a natural and healthy part of any young person’s diet, so gather nutritious snacks you know they enjoy. If they come home from school or soccer practice and are looking for a snack to replenish their energy levels, offer them a bowl of fresh berries, carrot sticks, hard boiled eggs, or one of my daughter’s favorites-mashed avocado and banana mixed with chunks of apples and a drizzle of honey on top. The hungrier your child is, the more likely they will eat whatever is offered to them.
Accommodating your child’s request for a familiar food, while combining it with a healthy food is a sure way of getting them to open up to the idea of trying new foods. If your child doesn’t like broccoli, perhaps they will enjoy it once they are offered with one of their favorite condiments, such as ketchup. It may appear odd, however kids will be more likely to eat a nutritious food when paired with a familiar one!
Keeping a wide variety of healthy snack options in your pantry at all times, will lead your child to make better decisions about food. If there are only healthy options available, your child will surely warm up to the healthy varieties as time goes on.
Finding creative ways to incorporate healthy foods into your child’s diet is a fabulous way to get your picky eater to eat healthy. Simply take a food your child loves and find a simpler version. Pizza, for example, has countless variations that allow for healthier alternatives to the traditional, grease-covered pepperoni pizza. There are recipes available for cauliflower crust, grain-free crust, and an endless list of potential toppings. This does not apply solely to pizza-there are healthier alternatives to almost any food you can think of-it just takes a bit of research and creativity!
Ultimately, helping your children develop healthy eating habits begins outside of the kitchen, and communication is key. By maintaining an atmosphere of positivity, acceptance and open discussion in your home, you will be able to illuminate the path for your child to become confident in themselves and make the correct choices about their health for the rest of their lives.
More About the Author
Shelly Stauber is the Medicinal Gourmet. She is also a joyful mother to a thriving 6 year old daughter in Naples. She is a MOMtrepreneur whose mission it is to restore her clients to optimal health and wellness through deliciously prepared, natural healing foods. Her interests in creating nutritiously delicious meals ignited when she was seeking a way to heal her own health challenges.
Her philosophy is quite simple. The human body was created with an incredible ability to heal itself when it is nourished from the inside out. Sourcing and selecting the highest quality ingredients is the foundation of her gourmet culinary creations. Therefore, she spent the last 13 years fostering relationships with a variety of the best local, organic and biodynamic farmers, who take tremendous pride in growing and raising a wide variety of healthy and vibrant fruits, veggies, herbs and meats.
If you would like to learn more about thriving with Shelly, The Medicinal Gourmet, please visit her site here.