Getting kids to eat their vegetables might seem like an almost impossible task, but there’s been a whole bunch of people working on it.
A Washington Post article points out that researchers at Texas A & M University, we now officially know something that we moms probably knew all along:
Kids, in short, are much more likely to eat their vegetable portion when it’s paired with a food that isn’t so delicious it gets all the attention. When chicken nuggets and burgers, the most popular items among schoolchildren, are on the menu, for instance, vegetable waste tends to rise significantly. When other less-beloved foods, like deli sliders or baked potatoes, are served, the opposite seems to happen.
Ah ha! The trick is isolation. Feed the kids their vegetables with something else they are not to keen on or… feed them only veggies.
The article goes on to report that the “eat your veggies first is the strategy” is one Traci Mann embraces. She teaches psychology and studies eating habits at the University of Minnesota.
Eat them before other food is on your plate, or even at your table. And that way, you get them when you’re hungriest and unable to pick something else instead.
By the way, that strategy works for adults as well as kids.
But brilliant moms already know this… and they also know a few other tricks that work. Here are five of the best ideas–and foods–to get kids to eat their vegetables.
Yes, love the idea of serve veggies first. That can be with platter of veggie appetizers and dip for a snack. I love this idea of serving veggie sticks and dip (yorgurt-based, I hope) in a cup. And you don’t have to wait for a party to make these. They’re easy for an everyday afterschool snack.
I like the idea of serving salads first instead of adding them to the plates, family-style. Yeah, it’s an extra few dishes to wash, but who cares if junior and juniorette eat their salad. And, there’s something so… mannerly about salads first.
Have you noticed that anything you put on a skewer delights kids. Maybe it’s a type popsicle psychology.
Let them eat with their fingers. It’s a tactile thing… and fun, too. And these cubed honey roasted butternut squash cubes look so yummy.
Okay, it all else fails, sneak the food into their diets, one way or another. One of my favorite ways is in a smoothie. Yum!
There are some really “brilliant” ideas to get your kids to eat their veggies… and maybe you, too.
Be sure to stop by At Muse Ranch again for more tips, hacks, and inspirations,