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How to Increase Your Child's Fruit and Vegetable Intake

How to Increase Your Child's Fruit and Vegetable Intake
Does your child make excuses to avoid fruits and vegetables? Well, it is normal for a child to do so, but getting him complete nutrition is important. A few tips on how to increase your child's fruit and vegetable intake are mentioned here.
Dhanashree Patane
Last Updated: Mar 8, 2018
gril unwilling to have breakfast
As kids, it is natural to be picky and stubborn. And as parents we know that raising kids in optimum physical and mental health is not an easy task. A major problem with most of the kids is that, they do not seem to eat enough of fruits and vegetables, which makes up a major nutrition portion of their daily diet. We are known to the fact that these are filled with nutrition. But the green color on their platter will make them run for shelter in all possible directions. If the child is a little older he will simply filter the veggies before eating, while the toddler might make you take a run around the house, while you try to feed him. The constant nagging, forcing and running around is not healthy, both for the parent and for the child as well. As a parent giving up or surrendering to your child's stubborn attitude is not the solution, because complete nutrition during childhood is very important for growth and development. Well, leave the worries, we have certain tips and easy ways that can help your child eat healthy fruits and vegetables.
Easy Ways to Increase Fruits and Veggies in your Child's Diet
It is tough to make children have the recommended dose of fresh fruits and veggies, that too without creating a hassle, pleading and yelling at the dinner table. One very important thing is to have patience and never force or nag. Sounds tough? Know how to make it easy in the pointers below.
eating together
Be the example for the kids. Let them know how much you enjoy fresh fruits and vegetables. If you don't follow a healthy diet, the kids will also follow the same. Have patience, it is going to take time for results.
buying vegetables
Get healthy food for kids when it comes to grocery shopping. Filling and stacking only healthy foods will help introduce healthy eating habits. Let the kids also join you when buying fruits and vegetables. Let them pick their favorites.
gardening girl
Introduce your kids to vegetables and fruits in a creative and funny way. Let them grow simple veggies and fruits at home. It can be a small tray or a pot in a kitchen garden, with basic vegetables. You can also take their help to wash the fruits and veggies.
family at farm
You can take the child explore the world of vegetables and fruits, either on line at home or take him on a short trip to a vegetable farm.
amusing food for kids
Creative way to introduce children to healthy eating is by playing some fun games. Experts believe that a child needs to taste and see the food at least 15 times to develop a liking for it. So plan something that can make him follow a few bites of the vegetable or fruit. Slowly he will develop a taste and not hesitate to eat healthy.
boy with vegetables
Variety is the key to keep the kids interested in eating all types of veggies. When introducing fruits and veggies, include a variety of vegetables. Do not force him to a certain set of vegetables everyday. Try different options. Introduce one or two fruits each day. Considering the nutritional guide for children, the daily recommended fruit and vegetable intake is five portions of fruits and veggies. That is 2-3 cups of veggies and 1-2 cups of fruits. Distribute these carefully in the meals.
Serve and cook vegetables in different ways for kids. Grill or steam the vegetables, use them in pasta, salads, sandwiches. Add them with anything that your child likes. Cut them in small sizes, mostly bite size pieces. Stack them where they can be handy. Cut a bowl of fresh fruits and keep it at eye level in the refrigerator. For snacking, keep dry fruits and fresh fruits packed and handy.
Cut the vegetables and fruits in different creative shapes to amaze the kids, you can also serve them in a colorful platter. Make designs and fun things on the plate and in sandwiches, to encourage the child. Use fresh fruits in the morning as breakfast with cereal, use them in small servings at each meal. But avoid canned or processed fruits. Try to get fresh fruits.
sipping juice together
Make food interesting, try different recipes that include vegetables. Puree vegetables and use them in recipes. Make fresh fruit juices or smoothies. Make snacks from raw or grilled veggies, by complimenting them with your child's favorite dip or sauce.
popeye and olive
Sit and talk to your child about the importance of nutrition, you can also use examples of their favorite action hero or cartoon character to help them understand better. Create a positive view about vegetables and fruits in the child. Always encourage him by celebrating and appreciating even the smallest effort he makes.
mother and daughter happily eating
Let the kids enjoy their favorite foods once in a while. Do not pressure the child for a certain vegetable or dish. Try different versions and most importantly, do not give up. You will have to try endlessly to finally get him to eat fruits and vegetables, without forcing him.
Chalk the nutritional requirements, and include some fun games and activities when feeding the child. Eating food should be a positive experience for the child, it will help him relish the food and ensure maximum nutrition, as the child will not only have a content tummy, but a positive view about nutrition too!
Fresh iceberg lettuce
Whole and sliced Potatoes
Curly lettuce leaves on a blackboard