5 Tips to Level up Your Kiddos Nutrition Game
IHM | Aug 12, 2022
My favorite meals are when I spend loads of time planning, preparing and executing a great meal, and nobody eats it…said no mom anywhere! This can be especially frustrating if you want to stick to healthy children’s nutrition guidelines because, let’s face it, you rarely see kids eating healthy, or at least, they’ll be less likely to reach for an apple instead of a lollypop unless you don’t stress the importance of eating healthy early on.
Let me be real; getting our kids to eat amazing well-rounded meals is extremely difficult. I have 4 kids, and even when I think I have their taste buds figured out, it all changes. I am here to give you some hope and encouragement because mealtime can be challenging.
In this blog article, we’ll touch bases on a few basics when it comes to healthy diets for kids and a few tips on how to make your kids eat a bit healthier without them realizing it.
Nutrition for Kids: 5 Ways to Introduce Healthy Habits
Improving your kid’s nutrition isn’t something insanely difficult. Sure, it takes some planning on your end, but once you get used to these small changes, you’ll get the whole thing broken down into a form of art. So, let’s go!
1. Get Creative With Veggies
If you want to see your kids eating healthy, you need to introduce a wide variety of vegetables to their diets. We all know that vegetables are incredibly healthy, but still, they can look a bit bland and boring, even for us, let alone for kids.
So, If you have littles, start introducing all kinds of veggies prepared in different ways. This way, you can discover new foods they like. Make a game out of it, and make sure YOU are eating them too. Your kids are watching. Even cutting veggies in a fun way will spark their interest.
2. Introduce Several Small Meals Throughout the Day
If you want a healthy diet for your kids, offer small amounts of only 2-3 different foods. Serving big portions can feel overwhelming to them. You can always give them more if they ask. Make sure you always offer a protein and a veggie. After a while, this will become their norm.
3. When Dinner Comes, Dinner Comes!
After 4 kids, I have realized that small, more frequent meals just make life better. My biggest switch was feeding the kids dinner right after school. This avoids a LOT of issues. They are always so hungry, so instead of giving them a snack, I just feed them what I had planned for dinner. Proper kids’ nutrition is all about energy, and this also helps them power through after-school activities. You can then offer a healthier snack before bed. My favorites are plain yogurt, peanut butter, apples, or a banana. This routine after school has saved us from many a meltdown and fights over dinner. There are no rules as to what time “dinner” must be served :)
Also, don’t have them skip breakfast. Eating right after waking up is essential for grownups as well, so you can imagine just how important it is to kids. A well-rounded breakfast that’s rich in complex carbohydrates, proteins, fiber, and vitamins is a great way to get a head start on the day and to ensure a fun day.
So, make sure to include some veggies, boiled eggs, peanut butter, and whole-grain bread. Still, it’s all up to you – just be creative and make sure that all the options are healthy.
4. Stay Committed to Those Vegetables!
Keep offering veggies to your kids. Make a small plate with cut-up veggies and leave it out. Kids love grab-and-go snacks, and this is a perfect way for them to try them without being told. You can even make a kid-style charcuterie board with cheese, raisins, veggies, and crackers. Your kids will LOVE this!
5. Involve the Kids!
If you want your kids eating healthy, the best thing you can do is to get them involved in planning and making meals. I know it’s messy but getting your kids in the kitchen to help you sparks curiosity to try new foods. It promotes confidence as well when they produce a meal for the family. It also helps them become more independent in making their own meals. Invest in a kid’s cookbook with lots of pictures and let them pick a few meals throughout the week with the expectation that they have to TRY what they make!