Making your toddler eat nutritional food is no less than a mountain to climb. Mothers understand the struggle – the constant chasing, crying and a bargain that you never signed up for but had to submit to – all thanks to the tantrums toddlers throw.
Well, kids hate nutritional food. They’d rather eat something unhealthy. But you cannot submit to their wishes all the time, right? You know nutrition is important and it shapes their health and career in the future.
So, what is there to do? How would you make your toddler eat nutritional food? Well, it’s a skill to master and this blog will help you in this regard.
Healthy eating practices for your toddler
Offer small, healthy snacks between meals
Smaller servings are less overwhelming. Offer your child nutritious choices that include:
- Low-fat string cheese
- Apple slices or strawberry halves
- Whole-grain crackers with peanut butter
For every year of age, give your youngster one spoonful of each food. Small servings allow kids to request more.
Don’t put any form of eating pressure on your kids. Beating, shaming, enticing, or punishing are examples of negative pressure. Any kind of pressure can impede your child’s ability to create a positive relationship with food.
Permit your kid to help
Allow them to select their own groceries. Next, figure out how they can assist with setting the table or preparing the food. They could be more inclined to eat if they participate in all the activities during lunchtime.
Display food creatively
Present dishes in a creative manner. The more creative the meal is, the greater the variety of foods your child will eat. Use your creativity to present a variety of healthy foods — including known favourites and some new foods — to make up the menu.
If your kid resists green veggies after trying them once, experiment with condiments and dips. To encourage healthy eating, continue reintroducing the vegetables frequently because kids are naturally slow to accept new tastes and textures.
Have more readily-available healthy choices around
By doing this, you can encourage your children to eat more fruits, vegetables, healthy cereals, whole grains, and dairy products.
Do not make your child consume something they do not want to (wait, there’s a catch). Allowing your child to select from two or three nutritious selections is the best course of action. As their tastes evolve, keep offering foods with different flavours and textures.
Be a role-model
Additionally, make sure you’re leading by example! In order to show your children that you are enjoying the food you are asking them to consume, serve them healthy dishes you enjoy or try something new.
Minimise interruptions at mealtimes
Switch off the laptops, tablets, phones, and televisions. This will enable you to teach your youngster to pay attention to their body’s signals when they are full.
Add fun and games:
Which kid doesn’t like games? They’ll always be on board for it. So, imagine if you make up a game that involves eating nutritious foods? Let’s say a competition as to who finishes their food faster, or some nutritional food items coming on being served on a toy train or toy car?
There is no denying that feeding your toddler nutritious food is a cumbersome task. It may test your patience, anger you, make you scream and give up. But just so you know you’re stronger and smarter than that. Be one step ahead by trying out these ways and see if they work for you.
Remember, as a parent, it is your duty to help set them up for a lifetime of healthy eating so they can grow up with balanced eating habits and achieve their potential.
Your child will eventually be able to eat a balanced diet on their own if you provide them with a variety of options and let them make their own food choices. Moreover, toddlers enjoy feeding themselves. Therefore, wherever possible, give your child finger meals rather than prepared ones that need to be eaten with a spoon or fork.
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