Fun Ways to Encourage Your Children to be Less Fussy
It can be so hard when our children are fussy. It can make family mealtimes really stressful. We all have the very best intentions when we start the weaning journey, but some children can just be defiant no matter how hard you try. Offering different vegetables and fruits is one thing, but if they refuse to eat them, what can you do? If you have a fussy child don’t worry. I have some fun ways to encourage your children to be less fussy.
Get them involved in cooking
One of the first things to consider would be to get your children involved in cooking. Sometimes this can be part of the issue. However, if they feel like they have been part of the cooking process or even “created” something themselves then they may be more encouraged to give the food a try.
Cooking can also be a fun activity to do with your children, allowing them to get hands-on with the process (and make lots of mess too!). You can discuss the different ingredients and where they come from and let them explore the different textures. You will notice a big difference if you let them cook their food rather than just serving it up.
Let them pick the ingredients
Another great way to get them to try new things and eat their meals is to let them pick their ingredients. Head to a shop and let them pick some vegetables and other ingredients to try. You could also think about going to a butcher or a greengrocer. This is a great way to better understand where food comes from and also a perfect chance for your child to pick out some ingredients. If you have a dish in mind, let your child do the shopping for you - try printing off pictures of the ingredients so they can help find them in the shop and check them off their list.
Grow your own
A fun way to get children more engaged with food and its ingredients is to start growing your own. You can start off small with a herb garden and branch out into other vegetables and fruits. There is a lot that can be learned about growing your own food, and it can be a wonderful activity that you do with your children. As they have learned about the process from start to finish they will be more interested in the food they are eating and will try new things.
A food eating challenge
If you have competitive children then this is the option to consider. It is fairly similar to what could be described as a bushtucker trial from a famous show called “I’m a celebrity get me out of here” where you present something to your child and the challenge is for them to try it. It could be different ingredients or trying different combinations of food. It is a fun way to get your child to try new things and to realise that they are open to a whole host of foods and flavours.
Fussy children is never an easy thing to overcome, but perseverance is key when it comes to getting your kids to try new foods. I hope some of these suggestions will encourage your children to eat different types of foods.
About the contributor:
Sarah Anguish is a northerner at heart, now living in Norfolk with her husband and three children. Alongside running a family lifestyle blog she works for her local NHS stop smoking service, juggling the highs and lows of being a working parent around the needs of her busy family.