- Eat together with your child and as a family for both meals and snacks. Make an effort to model appropriate eating behaviours and table manners.
- Be a role model. As parents we want to encourage and promote life-long habits of healthy eating for our families.
- Involve your children. Include your children in the shopping, planning and cooking. Give them a choice between two healthy snacks and let them choose. Even planting a garden together and watching food grow and then harvesting it can get your child involved.
- Variety is important! Always eating different foods is an easy way to make sure the child is getting a variety of nutrients.
- Encourage your child to eat new foods. Unfamiliar foods are often rejected the first few times. Always try a different food at least 15-20 times.
- It is important to promote and support and nurture your child’s sense of taste, acceptance and pleasure of foods.
- Don’t use dessert as a reward.
- Avoid pressure of any kind (including positive pressure). Remember that pressuring can seem like you are just being a good parent.
Jill Wallace, RD, CH
Mom, Registered Dietitian and Chartered Herbalist writing about nutrition. Have a topic you want to read about? I would love to hear your idea. Email firstname.lastname@example.org