Green your Eats
As every parent knows a healthy diet is
crucial to growing kids, but knowing the theory and putting that into
practice are often a universe apart. Some kids are naturally fussier than
others, but modern parents are reluctant to force a child to eat
something; even if that something is good for their health.
|Most of the vitamins minerals and nutrients
kids need to think, grow and develop a healthy immune system are found in
fruits and vegetables but getting kids to eat enough fruits and vegetables
is a daunting task, yet it is not as hard as you might think.
It is hard enough to feed a family of four
adults without including something that someone does not like. Traditional
comfort food can be very unhealthy; dishes such as Macaroni cheese have
very high fat levels and if you buy them readymade they can contain high
sodium levels as well. However there are lots of ways to increase the
vegetables in your kid’s diets without them noticing that their food has
Get the Kids to Eat More fruit and
- Often kids find eating fruit and
vegetables unpleasant because they are not exposed to a wide range of different
textures. Add a bowl of chopped apple, julienned carrots, cut grapes
to the center of the dinner table. If this does not tempt them then
add a dip.
- To get the kids curious about different
textures; it is a lot easier to get them to eat one julienned
vegetable than a plateful. Start small and work up to the bigger
picture. Modern research indicates that it takes about fifteen times
for the kids to see a vegetable before they want to try it.
- Involve the kids in meal planning talk
to them about the importance of healthy eating. Get them to make a
colored chart and color in the foods as they eat them this does not
have to complicated the color of the foods will do. This makes the
kids competitive as they can see what others in the family are eating
at a glance.
- Don’t make the table a battlefield;
you want to win the long game not the battle. Forcing children to eat
food does not achieve anything. However they will be more receptive in
long term if you are seen to eat fruit and vegetables, be a good role
- Add fresh fruit into their diet every
day. Cut up a mixture of fruit such as apples, pears and bananas and
add it to their cereal.
- Make a smoothie for breakfast. Use
different types of fruit frozen berries are perfect as long as they do
not have added sugar. Whizz (liquidise) a thick Greek type yogurt
with the fruit and add a touch of honey if it is not sweet enough.
- Add vegetables to pasta sauces and to
meatballs or meatloaf. Good choices are vegetables that are naturally
sweet such as sweet corn, red bell peppers, carrots or zucchini.
- Serve at least three vegetables at
dinner time, a lot of the vegetables cook in minutes, but if you have
time constraints add a tin of sweet corn to the meal.
- Get the kids to sign an agreement that
they will try a different fruit or vegetable every week.
- Make a homemade soup and add vegetables
and pulses for added health. Modern research indicates that soup keeps
you feeling full for longer so if any adults are on a diet this is a
healthy additive to all the families’ menus.
- Encourage the kids to make their own
salads and christen them and add them to the centre of the table. If
the kids have made it they are more likely to try it.
- Take the kids to a fruit and vegetable
farm, this is great because you get to pick fresh fruits and what
child can resist eating fresh strawberries as they pick.
- Cut vegetables and fruits into shapes
that make them look more interesting.
- Make textures more interesting add a
chocolate sauce to bananas and chopped hazelnuts, cashews; pistachios
or almonds and dried apricots or cranberries and serve as a healthy
but unctuous dessert.
Baked Bananas, With Added fruit
- 4 Large Ripe Bananas
- 100 g Dried Apricots, chopped
- 75g orange juice
- 45g Nutella
- ½ lemon juice
- 80g Chocolate, cut into pieces
- 50g Chopped, Toasted Hazelnuts, almonds,
cashews or pistachios.
Preheat the oven to 220c /Fan 200c.
Skin the bananas and cut them in half
diagonally and place in an ovenproof dish.
Mix together Nutella and
lemon juice and pour over the bananas.
Place the apricots in the orange
juice and heat in the microwave on half power for about four minutes
until they plump up and scatter them over the bananas.
Bake for 20
minutes, occasionally basting the bananas with the syrup.
slits into each of the bananas and push in the chocolate and pop back
into the oven until the chocolate has melted. Top with toasted nuts.
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