If your child isn’t refusing to eat, you’ve bypassed a big problem, but you still need to help them discover healthy eating habits. It’s best to eat food that’s beneficial and includes ingredients necessary for their mental and physical development, especially between ages 1 and 5.
To make your child develop healthy eating habits, first have them follow a 3-meal, 2-snack diet.
- Vary their meals. Multiple kinds of food will stimulate their appetite. How do you feel about fresh fruit with yogurt? Vegetables with hummus? A rice cake and banana? Crusty bread with cheese? Fish and rice?
- To keep your meals from getting boring, serve them differently. For example, decorate your broccoli dish with carrots or prepare colored pasta.
- If they don’t like vegetables, get creative. Make them somewhere between raw and boiled, cut into shapes they like or ground. Add nutritious sauce to make them more attractive to them. Use them to make stews or juices.
- There is no need for your child to eat a lot of processed sugar and salt. Avoid it yourself; you’re their example.
These Foods Are Harmful… Here Are Alternatives
If you insist that your child acquire good eating habits, don’t forget to find beneficial alternatives for certain harmful foods.
- Make nuts, colorful dried fruit, and purees of mixed fruit a treat and snack; then they won’t want cookies, chips, candies, or ice cream.
- Watch out, though! In the end, forbidding these harmful foods will make your child love them more. It’s okay to allow them to eat some now and then. A piece of chocolate from time to time will make them happy.
- Adopt a healthy way of preparing their food. Grill chicken or steam it rather than frying it, and serve yogurt with fruit rather than sugary ice cream and rice cakes rather than donuts.
- Help them get used to drinking natural juices; if they do that, they won’t like the processed ones filled with sugar. For that, use all kinds of fruit that they like. And why not? Put them all in one cup!