Picky Eaters, Part 2
If at first you don’t succeed, try again…and again…and again.
It’s no secret that children shy away from the unfamiliar. Let’s take broccoli, for example. It’s green, has sprouts, and doesn’t look or taste like things children see regularly like ice cream, pizza, or even fruit. Typically, broccoli is only seen on kids’ plates once or twice a week at dinner time. It’s not flaunted on commercials every hour as a yummy, delicious food. In essence, broccoli is somewhat foreign in most households!
So how do we counteract this?
Try again! And again! Make broccoli (or any vegetable for that matter) more common in your household. Add it to their plates even if you think they won’t eat it. One day, in the right situation (maybe a veggie-loving auntie is visiting, for example), they will surprise you and eat it! Incorporate vegetables into their breakfast, snacks, and lunch as well. EasyPeasie can help with this by being a way to offer small but frequent veggie exposures. This is the essence of palate priming — exposing their palate repeatedly to sensitize (or desensitize) the tongue and the brain to different flavors. Once the tongue and brain are willing, and the whole vegetables become more familiar, there will come a time when they get hungry or curious — and they’ll pick it up; eventually they’ll nibble at it. Baby steps!
No pressure though. Kids like to feel like they’re in charge…
A few days ago, I shared with my sister a picture of my son eating a carrot. Sounds strange, but this was a milestone for us. Unlike my big boy, the youngest is typically anti-vegetable. So, when he voluntarily grabbed and ate a carrot out of the snack bag, I had to snap a picture. My sister later reminded me of a “before” picture that was taken about a year and a half ago, which you guys have seen all over our website (it’s the one of him frowning in disgust at the sight of a carrot). I thought to myself, “our EasyPeasie plan is working!” He’s not miraculously a lover of all-things-vegetable now, but it’s a start and I’ll take it.
Again and again… You can do this!