Baby and child nutritionist Charlotte Stirling-Reed shares her 5 big tips to help parents get more vitamins and nourishment into their children’s diets.
1. Enjoy mealtimes
Try to make mealtimes enjoyable. If they’ve become a bit of a battleground take a step back and find some ways to make everyone enjoy coming to the table again. Get your kids involved, playing some calm music, having buffet style meals can all help!
2. Enable positive choices
Take the pressure off. It can be so easy to try and overly encourage children to eat foods they don’t want but sometimes just saying “That’s OK you don’t have to eat it” can actually have the best impact. Giving them some independence around their own food choices helps them to make more positive choices at mealtimes.
3. Be a role model
Be a role model as much as you can. By ensuring that you’re eating all the kinds of foods that you want your children to eat. Your children tend to learn what and how to eat from watching and observing you.
4. Think variety
Always think variety! Variety is often really key when trying to get children to eat well. The more variety, the more nutrients your children are likely to be exposed to over the day and the less foods they are likely to refuse as they get older.
5. Consistency is key
Don’t give up. It can sometimes seem like things aren’t working, but children tend to accept what they are familiar with. If your little one doesn’t like broccoli, or fish on the first go, keep trying and eventually you might get there. Avoid pressuring them to “eat up” as that’s unlikely to work, but just don’t give up. Keep offering the foods regularly and keep eating it yourself too!