People always comment, “Claire is such a good eater.” Or they say “she’s not picky at all is she?”? Then the comments usually are followed by the question: How do you get her to eat all that?
There is no trick as far as I am concerned. Kids want to follow our behavior and they will do what they can with their environment so from day 0 we’ve had Claire exposed to all kinds of foods.
By day 0 I mean, even before she was born, Helen ate whatever she wanted as if nothing was different. We think that helped introduce Claire to flavors and at least the essence of certain foods. This continued even throughout the whole time helen brestfed (bottle mostly).
And ever since we started feeding claire food other than milk, we’ve always given her what we are having for dinner with the exceptions of certain allergens.
But as she has grown up a bit, she likes to push her boundaries. It is now becoming more of a challenge for her to eat dinner or lunch sometimes.
So I guess there are some tricks I’ve been using lately. The easiest one I can point to is to make the food interesting. I have a theory about kids and how they learn and follow your lead.
If they’re not learning, if they’re bored then they won’t follow your lead. It’s natures’ way of saying, get off your ass and entertain me or show me something neat.
So I try to apply that to food. It doesn’t always work but I have taken some photos of the times it does help. Oftentimes it is the first few bites that are the most troublesome so just take care of a few bites at first and focus on that. I often make food look much better than it really does for the first few bites only.
I found a simple little box that makes rice cubes like the ones in this picture:
When I go to the grocery store I look for new items to try with Claire. If you keep mixing things then there’s less chance of developing an attachment towards one particular type of food.
If you look closely you’ll see tons of option at your grocery store. Here’s just one shelf at my store and Claire hasn’t tried over half of these stuff. I see eggplant, yellow wax beans, lots of mushrooms and other stuff.
I’m sure I’ll have more food posts to share with you but one of the other “tricks” I do with Claire for her to eat her breakfast is that I involve her in the production of her meal most of the times.
I ask her if she wants apple or oranges, or rice or potatoes, etc. I let her participate and that makes things a lot easier. Many parents think they have to dictate the food, and time when a kid eats but I’ve found the opposite to be the most efficient way.
Let the kids be involved with their meals, after all, they’re going to eat it. So let them have some say on what they eat but lead them to eat everything that a good diet has to offer.