Having a child that is reluctant to try new foods is a big headache for parents and caregivers.
My 9 year old son is a picky eater.
He is a problematic child who picks food that he likes to eat (fried chicken, nuggets, fish, hotdogs, ham, potatoes and corn )but push away or reject those certain foods that dislikes ( all types of vegetables, onions, fishcakes, pumpkins and more) .
Most of us parents would resort to bribing or threatening our children to get them to try new foods but in vain.
Your child would rather starve himself throughout the meal time than to try at least a bite of the new food you had recommended him.
I believe that I am not alone facing with the children picky eating problem because this is not an uncommon problem in the parenthood world.
After years of trials and errors, I had finally found out that these tips worked out well if you could change your same old techniques to something that are practical.
#1- Do not Bribe or Threaten
Bribing your child such as allowing him to use the computer after he had finished his meal, leaving not a single grain on the plate might work the first few times but not for a long term.
Threats do work in the beginning but once he saw the loop holes , your threats become useless because he knows how to twist and turn different excuses to make you give up sooner than expected.
Kids do not fall for the same threats and bribery tricks everytime you try to introduce new food to them.
There are smart alecks.
Instead, you should give words of encouragement and set a good example yourself, eat the new food infront of him, a lot and a “delicious” looking expression.
#2- Healthy Choices
Make sure that new foods are healthy and nutritious food.
You could combine new foods with his favorite regular ingredients to attract his attention.
Stir fry celery with his favorite ham or chicken fillets.
Healthy food covers a wide range of fresh food, not pre-packed manufactured food.
Fruits, vegetables, tubers, lean meats and seafood should be included in his diet
Introduce different flavor of food to your child.
#3- Set good example
Children eating behavior derive from the older siblings and parents themselves.
As the saying goes Practice What You Preach, you have to set a good example to your picky eating children by eating new foods (which you introduce to them) .
Childrenwould rather consume foods that they regularly eat at home or outside, especially their favorite food.
Once they are used to eating the same regular food, it is difficult to break through their taste buds to try new foods.
Hence, it is advisable to introduce new foods as often as possible to your children by serving a small portion on their plate while adults serve a bigger portion themselves.
Show them that new foods are as delicious and tasty as their favorite foods.
Your positive remarks and expression are the crucial points that attracts your children tasebuds.
#4- Eat what I eat
Parents have the wrong concept that children cannot eat what adults are eating from the start.
In fact, children SHOULD BE eating what adults eat as long as the food consumption is nutritious and healthy.
Most children can accept what parents are eating because they are eager to know the taste of the food and wanted to follow every steps parents do daily.
Encourage children to try the food that you eat, giving your children a spoonful first.
If he can accept it without gagging or spitting out, give him a small portion unless he ask for more.
Do not waste food.
You can give your child different types of meats ( besides the regular chicken and fish ), vegetables (green )and beans which they seldom consume.
My son had finally accepted garlic, Pak choy and mushrooms which he refused to accept since birth.
It was a difficult phase but I never gave up trying to introduce new foods to my children.
Do not feel dismay or scold your child when he flatly refused to open his mouth to accept new foods.
Try again in the next few days.
I did a trick which aroused his interest on garlic.
Chopped and stir fry garlic briefly until crispy.
He love the smell and crunchy taste of garlic which I scattered on top of blanched pak choy.
Cut the pak choy leaves into smaller pieces instead of the original size ( too large to chew ).
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