Why Are Vegetables Important For Kids
Vegetables should be a staple in the diets of children. They provide an array of nutrients for the body and brain, including fiber, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and phytochemicals.
The importance of vegetables in children’s diets is not just about nutrition. It is also about supporting healthy eating habits early on in life. The more vegetables they eat as kids, the more likely they will be to eat them as adults too.
This is all easy to write down on a computer screen, but getting them to actually eat their veggies is another matter. Let’s look at some common vegetables and come up with some ways to get them to eat them.
5 Ways To Get Your Kids To Eat Carrots
Carrots are a great source of nutrients and can be used to make healthy snacks for the kids. However, getting them to eat vegetables is not always easy. Here are five ways that parents can help their kids get into carrots.
Get them involved in the process.
Let your kids help you pick out vegetables and make a list of what they’d like to eat. Then, let them pick what they want to cook with it. You can also ask them how they would like it cooked or what kind of sauce they want on top of it.
Make it fun.
If you have a vegetable garden at home, invite your kids to help you plant seeds and harvest veggies in the summertime. You could also try making some veggie-themed crafts with them or watch some green-minded movies that you can both enjoy.
Let them cook.
Parents should do all of the stove work with carrot preparation, but you can let your kids add them to the pan. All it takes is a few little things to give them ownership of the situation.
Make them sweet.
If your kids do not like carrots in their raw form, try adding a little sweetness. Some butter and brown sugar might make carrots a little less healthy, but they become a lot more palatable.
Make them savory.
On the other end of the spectrum is salt and it can be a game changer when it comes to vegetables. Although salt has a bad reputation, it is a flavor enhancer and a very good one.
5 Ways To Get Your Kids To Eat Brussels Sprouts
Brussels sprouts are a vegetable that many kids avoid because they’re not as fun as other vegetables. They are not really attractive in natural form and they have a horrible name. Here are five ways to convince your kid to add them to their diet.
Change The Name
Let’s face it, Brussels sprouts is a horrible name and no kid in their right mind would request them. Change the name to something a bit more appealing like “baby lettuce”.
Roasting food can help bring out the flavor and it certainly can do a wonder with Brussels sprouts. Cut them in half and then give them some time under the broiler to completely change the taste and texture of this veggie.
Cook Them Completely
If not cooked long enough, Brussels sprouts can be incredibly bitter. You might not notice it, but a child will find the bitterness overwhelming.
Add A Sauce
Going with the new name of “baby lettuce”, add a dressing to the mix. A little ranch dressing as a dipping sauce or a drizzle will kick your sprouts up to a new level.
Make It A Game
Who can eat the most sprouts in a meal, with the winner getting prize or a special dessert. As a parent, you probably already know the power of bribery, so use it.
5 Ways To Get Your Kids To Eat Broccoli
Broccoli ranks right up there with Brussels sprouts on the kid do not eat list. It doesn’t have to be that way though. Here are five ways to reverse the trend.
Serve it with butter and Parmesan cheese.
Kids just do not appreciate the flavor of veggies, so you need to mask it with something strong. One day their pallet will evolve, but for now, flavor it up.
Add bacon, cheese, and sour cream to make a delicious broccoli casserole.
This is essentially making a casserole to disguise your veggies, but it works. Start with a small amount of broccoli and then gradually increase it.
Serve it with pasta for a nutritious meal.
Broccoli makes a excellent addition to a pasta, especially an Alfredo pasta. Just sneak the veggies in and hope they do not notice.
Use the best part.
The florets are generally the more palatable section of broccoli. They cost a bit more, but it keeps your kids from having to deal with the woody stalk of the plant.
If all else fails, juice up some broccoli and add it to their apple juice. They will never know, especially if you serve it cold enough.