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How to get your child eat vegetables

Submitted by Sharon Hopkins on November 20, 2007

We as adults know the numerous benefits of eating vegetables. Also in recent days the adult population is becoming more health conscious and focusing more on a nutritious diet. We know that consuming ample of vegetables in various forms like salads, cooked, steamed, stir fried, soups and vegetable juices will help to ward off many diseases and keep us healthy. But when it comes to our children we find it the most difficult task to make them eat vegetables! No matter how much you try to make them understand the benefits of eating vegetables, all efforts are in vain.

It is important to inculcate good eating habits in them from a young age to avoid any health related problems in future.

Any disease like diabetes, obesity, heart issues or gut problems doesn’t occur overnight, in fact the progression starts from a young age when diet and health is neglected. There is a direct proportion of vegetable consumption and reducing the risk of heart disease, hypertension, cancer and stroke. Some children suffer from constipation or irregular bowel movements.

The fiber from vegetables will help to eliminate this problem to a greater extent.

Tips to include vegetables in your child’s diet -

  • It is important to include at least 3-4 servings of vegetables in your child’s daily diet.
  • Instead stuffing your refrigerator and cabinets with cookies, junk foods, wafers, chips, chocolates or sodas make healthy choices.

    Whenever your child reaches for food when hungry he should get baby carrots, a bowl of sliced sweet peppers, celery sticks, or fresh vegetables juices.
  • For snacks in school give him carrot sticks or celery sticks, cabbage leaves with sweetened or flavored low fat yoghurt or low fat custard. You can also stuff loads of vegetables in wheat breads to make a healthy sandwich.

    For more palatability add a slice of low fat cheese in it.
  • If your child avoids green vegetables altogether give them in hidden form, for example you can give him spinach pancakes, or spinach roll where in you mash the spinach.
  • You can even choose a frozen vegetable for snack after school where time constrains is an issue.
  • Put lots of vegetables in the noodles or patties which you make for burger. Roasted vegetables and grilled vegetables would also be a good choice with an interesting accompaniment.
  • You can involve your child in cooking simple recipes which includes vegetables. He will enjoy the food which he has prepared on his own and eat it with great taste.
  • Be a good role model; give him those vegetables which you dislike. Don’t show your dislike for a particular vegetable in front of him, he will surely not eat it then.

Once your child learns to eat healthy foods and vegetables he will also learn to make wise food choices as he grows older.

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