A Answers (3)
Children are picky eaters. A lot of times parents will ask, "How do I get them to eat certain vegetables, or fruits, or meats?" My response is always, "Instead of just loading up the stuff that you know that they are going to eat, like macaroni and cheese, or Cheerios, or whatever kind of starchy foods that you know they love, have them take a bite of everything on their plate before they can ask for more. So you put a little bit of everything. You don't want to force-feed them a whole plate full of green beans, and then they start throwing up, and they'll refuse it forever. So just a bite of everything, and then they can ask for more of what they want."
Erik Fisher, Psychology, answeredEarly eating options often develop into later eating preferences. Essentially, if you provide certain types of foods or flavors in your children's food when they're younger, they are more likely to develop a taste for those foods in their adulthood. Just like our behaviors and language skills, our food preferences are fostered from birth.
Cheryl Tallman, Nutrition & Dietetics, answeredEncouraging healthy eating is about balance -- even when it comes to taste. Here are a few tips that can help you expand or improve the balance in your child's taste buds.
Experiment with Tastes: Allow your child to experience and identify the four unique tastes that make up flavor -- sweet, salty, sour, bitter. Taste small amounts of different ingredients to identify which taste category they belong to. This can be a fun kitchen activity when preparing dinner!
Stay Balanced: Good taste is a balancing act. Include a variety of tastes in your meals and encourage your child to try all foods. Experiencing the same tastes all the time is not a path to healthy eating.
Ask Them and Talk About It: When you hear "that's yummy!" or "Yuck -- that's terrible!" ask which flavor is best or bothering. The more you understand your child's taste preferences the easier to guide (and expand) their food choices.
Sweet Tendency: Both breast milk and formula are sweet. It is the first taste we develop and as a result we're already "off balance" when we begin eating foods. It is believed the earlier you introduce your child to other tastes, the better chance you have of keeping a "sweet tooth" from overpowering the taste buds.