At Soreen we understand that every responsible parent is concerned about what their kids eat and drink. But we also appreciate that keeping your kids on the straight and narrow path of a consistently healthy diet is a lot easier said than done.
Left to their own devices many kids would much sooner eat sweet biscuits and drink fizzy pop. And sometimes it makes life a lot easier to let them have their own way. At the end of the day you’d rather they ate ‘something’ instead of ‘nothing’, so you give in and indulge them. But whenever possible, maintaining a healthy diet for your children will be your main aim, so here are a few tips from Soreen to help you get there.
Add some fun.
It might be an advertising cliché to make smiley faces and other simple shapes out of kids’ meals, but it actually does work. You’re not messing about with their food for the sake of it, you’re making it more appealing and more likely to get eaten. You could also try giving certain foods silly names, like ‘baby bushes’ for broccoli, or maybe use a pastry cutter to turn toast into hearts and tomatoes into stars.
Get them involved
Of course you can’t have your kids steaming vegetables or chopping up fruit, but for instance, letting them make a green salad or fruit salad with pre-sliced ingredients is safe enough. The more interested in they are in what’s going onto their plates or into their bowls, the better. They could also help you choose vegetables and fruit at the supermarket, especially if you tell them to pick their favourite shapes and colours.
Dip into something different
Savoury dips like hummus, salsa, taramasalata and yogurt-based dressings are all tasty ways of making vegetables more exciting and working towards a healthy diet for children. A carrot stick dipped in hummus is a much more appetising prospect than a plain carrot.
Forget the fizzy stuff
Try and phase out fizzy pops, colas and additive packed juices. Plain milk is an excellent alternative because it has plenty of calcium in it, and in moderation flavoured milks are acceptable, but they do contain some sugar and sweeteners so go easy. Water is brilliant, because it teaches kids to accept a low flavour, no calories, no-sugar beverage as a thirst quencher. And it’s free!
Introduce new foods slowly
Kids are suspicious and new-food phobic by nature, so don’t suddenly thrust a plate of vegetables they’ve never had before in front of them. Instead, include a few ‘new’ vegetables on their plates gradually over a period of days until they get used to the flavour and the taste. And for fruit, try variety rather than quantity. A bowl containing a selection of different fruits in small pieces is more likely to get eaten than a bowl full of sliced apples.
Treating your kids to a bowl of chocolate ice cream because they ate their peas and carrots is defeating the object, but rewarding them with non-food items like small toys, stickers and books might well encourage a healthy diet for children. Yes you are bribing them, but it’s in a good cause.
We’re not saying that any of these suggestions will turn your kids onto a regular diet of vegetables, fruit and water but any step in the right direction is worth taking.
As a final tip from Soreen we can’t resist a little plug for our Original Lunchbox Loaves and Banana Lunchbox Loaves. They’re only 95 calories each and less than 0.3g saturated fat too and even meet the Government’s Nutritional Standards for Schools. They’re perfect for a snack alternative that’s part of a healthy diet for children. Plus, throughout April, lookout for our on-pack ‘Kids Go FREE’ stickers for the LEGOLAND® Windsor Resort.
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