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battle with him over this,” she tells,
offer a selection of healthy foods and
let him choose what she wants. Keep
trying new foods; it might take time
for him to learn to like them. Also
she reminds us that when your child
says no to new foods, don’t give up.
“A child may need to be exposed to
new foods many times before they
will accept them,” she points out.
“Trust your toddler to know when
he is hungry or full; pressuring your
child to eat will not help.”
Food Suggestions
Add pureed or minced vegetables
to spaghetti sauce, hamburgers,
soups, muffins or bread, suggests
Fahmida. “Offer some nutritious
foods that contain fat like peanut
or soy nut butter, milk or cheese,”
she notes, and other foods include
protein-rich seafood, lean meat
and poultry, eggs, beans, peas, soy
products, and unsalted nuts and
seeds. “Also encourage your child
to eat a variety of fresh, canned,
frozen or dried fruits — rather than
fruit juice,” says Fahmida, if your
child drinks juice, make sure it’s one
hundred percent juice. Also be sure
to serve a variety of fresh, canned or
frozen vegetables — especially dark
green, red and orange vegetables,
beans and peas. “In grains, choose
whole grains, such as whole-wheat
bread, oatmeal, popcorn, quinoa,
or brown or wild rice,” she suggests
and in dairy, encourage your child
to eat and drink fat-free or low-fat
dairy products, such as milk, yogurt,
cheese or fortified soy beverages.
Eating Out
While eating out, Fahmida advises
that kids should drink water or
milk instead of sodas. “Also avoid
chicken nuggets which are unhealthy
imposters of real chicken,” she
tells, and skip the fries; instead
consider taking along a bag of mini
carrots, grapes, or other fruits and
vegetables to have instead. This will
add vitamins and fiber to the meal.
“ Order the kid’s meal with some
substitutions –children often love
the kid’s meal more for the fun box
and toys than for the food,” she says.
“Also opt for chicken and vegetables
or spaghetti with tomato sauce in a
sit-down restaurant, rather than a
big plate of macaroni and cheese.”
DealingWith Picky
Eaters Tips:
• Satisfy children’s thirst with water.
Drinking lots of juice can fill up
their little stomachs so that they
are not hungry at regular meal
• Try new foods in small amounts
and in a form that your toddler
can easily handle.
• Young children have taste
sensitivity; therefore the food
prepared should be mildly
flavored. The food served should
be of different shapes, colors and
flavors. This will improve the food
• Never rush your child while he/
she is eating and never show any
dislike towards that food. This may
lead to rejection of the food by the
• Angry discipline is wrong
discipline. Handle frustrating
situations with patience and
positive attitude
• Let your kids be “produce pickers.”
Let them help pick out fruits and
veggies at the store.
• Children also learn about fruits
and vegetables when they help
make them.
• Offer choices. Rather than asking
“Do you want broccoli for
dinner?” ask “Which would
you like for dinner: broccoli or
Offering a variety of foods helps
preschoolers get the nutrients they
need from every food group. They
will also be more likely to try new
foods and learn to like more foods.
When preschoolers develop a taste
for many types of foods, it’s easier to
plan family meals.
(Credit: Fahmida Jafri)
Healthy Snack Ideas
For Toddlers:
Although planned snacks are a
great way to help children get
calories and nutrients they need
for growth and development, be
sure that you don’t offer snacks too
close to regular meal times. Offer
snack foods that are generally high
in fiber, low in sugar and fat. Some
ideal snack foods are as follows:
• A piece of fresh fruit – nature’s
convenience food, portioned and
ready to go
• A small handful of dried fruit
• Raw veggies with low fat yogurt
dip or hummus
• Celery or apple slices with peanut
• A bowl of fresh berries
• A cup of vegetable soup
• Mini carrots – a great grab-and-
go snack
• Skip the fries and choose or
bring seasonal or canned fruit.
Pair frozen pizza with steamed
veggies, salad or fruit.
(Credit: Fahmida Jafri)
July/Aug 2014