Healthy Eating for Picky Eaters
Have a picky eater? Check out the ways I’m helping my picky eater enjoy healthy eating and become a healthy eater and free printable to help!
My daughter turned 8 this summer and I can say that pretty much every meal I’ve fed her in the past 8 years has been a struggle. That girl is the pickiest eater I have ever met. It would be easier to tell you what foods she will eat than to list what she doesn’t like. I feel bad for her, though, because I can tell that she’s really not trying to be difficult. She wants to like food. I can’t tell you how many times she’s tried soy sauce because she loves the way it smells, but the taste is too much for her.
Feeding a picky eater can be beyond frustrating. We’ve had many meals start and end in tears – both hers and mine. I’m concerned that she isn’t being properly nourished because of the small amount of foods she’ll actually eat. But in the past 8 years I’ve picked up a few tips and tricks that mostly work.
1. Take Advantage of Meals Your Picky Eater Likes
My daughter always eats breakfast. She doesn’t like smoothies, but she will eat eggs so I take advantage of the opportunity to feed her protein. She’s picky about meat the rest of the day, though, so she gets eggs pretty much every morning so I know she’s getting at least one solid serving of protein.
2. Take Away Snacks
This is a hard one, but in order for me to tell if my daughter really truly doesn’t like a food, I need her to be hungry at meal time. This means snacking just isn’t allowed. I have found that if she is really, truly hungry for a meal, she’ll eat food she claims she doesn’t like. This also includes any food eaten after dinner. If she doesn’t eat her dinner, she doesn’t even get a piece of fruit after dinner.
3. Serve Foods They Like
Oddly enough, one of the foods that my daughter will eat is Brussels sprouts. I know, I know. So what this means is that we pretty much have Brussels sprouts at dinner every day. Thankfully the rest of us really like them, too! If there is one healthy food your picky eater likes, take advantage of it and serve it a lot.
4. Let It Go
In the words of Elsa, you have to let it go. Don’t take it personally. I would never have imagined how much it means to me to see my family eating the food I’ve made for them – and it breaks my heart when they don’t! But I try not to take it personally and let them each make their own choice as to what they want to eat. Of course, I still control what is an option to eat, but in general, if they don’t want to it, I let it go.
5. Eat the Rainbow
My daughter is 8 and she loves rainbows so I took a hold of that and applied it to our eating habits. I created an “Eat the Rainbow” chart and hung it on our fridge. My daughter thinks it’s about the coolest thing ever and she really tries to eat at least one food from each color every day. This has helped vary the food she’s eating and I know that she’s getting a nice variety of nutrients in her food. The girl will eat two pounds of strawberries in one sitting and seeing the rainbow has reminded her to vary her colors! Want one of your own? Print this fun Eat the Rainbow Chart PDF to hang on your fridge.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Horizon Organic. The opinions and text are all mine.