2023 Author: Anita Thornton | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-08-25 11:16
You know the importance of fruit in your children's diet, but eating 5 to 10 servings a day seems difficult to you? Not by following these handy tips!
Leave the fruit close at hand
Make fruit easily accessible. Prepare easy-to-go snacks, such as grapes or plums, and store them in a bowl in the fridge at eye level. You can also leave a dish of ready-to-eat fruit on the kitchen counter.
Make it a family affair
Encourage children to participate in menu choices and meal preparation as a family. They derive a lot of satisfaction from helping to prepare meals and are much more likely to eat what they have prepared. Young children who spend time in the kitchen are also less intimidated by new foods and are much more likely to try them. Encourage your children's culinary gifts by encouraging them to prepare a sandwich or a fruit salad.
Lead by example
Children tend to imitate adults. If they see you feasting on a sweet, juicy peach, they might want one too. Eating habitsof parents is an excellent indicator of what children eat. Your children are watching you very closely: never underestimate your influence.
Make it a treat
Once in a while, when you serve fresh fruit to kids, treat it to a scoop: top a scoop of berry ice cream or thread grapes on a skewer with cherry tomatoes and bocconcini.
If it's good for parents, it's good for kids
From early childhood, around 12 months, encourage children to enjoy meals and family meals. Children learn to eat what the family eats if they are served the same foods and encouraged to taste them in an atmosphere of relaxation and fun.
Cook with fresh fruit
Fruit added to recipes counts in the calculation of daily fruit servings. Incorporate fresh fruit into kids' favorite foods, such as smoothies, cereal or muffins. They might not notice them, but they're sure to enjoy their delicious, sweet taste.
Prepare fruit in homemade cups
Kids love prepared fruit cups, probably because of the syrup in them. Make your own fruit cups by canning peaches, pears, plums, etc. This way you will have preserves all winter long and can control the amount of sugar they contain.
Make it a ritual
Get into the habit of serving fresh fruitas a dessert after supper. Occasionally, if you prefer to serve a piece of cake or a bowl of ice cream, enhance it with a few slices of pears, bananas, oranges or berries.
Introduce children to a wide variety of fruits at an early age – the earlier the better – and serve them fruit often. The more accustomed they are to it, the more likely they are to taste it.
For children to accept a new food, they need to be exposed to it, and ideally taste it, eight to ten times. It is not uncommon for children to love a food one day and hate it the next. It is by dint of being exposed to he althy foods that they end up enjoying a varied diet.
Enjoy when they're hungry
Offer fruit as a snack to children when they are hungriest. Try fruit slices and chunks: a child may refuse a whole apple, but enjoy a sliced apple.
Make homemade smoothies
Usually made with fruit, juice and yogurt, these smoothies often contain two to three servings of fruit. Kids don't have to worry about drinking smoothies because they love their smooth texture and sweet taste.
Prefer he althier everyday choices
Fill the fridge with locally produced fresh fruit and reserve sweets for special occasions. If the cabinets arefull of cookies, candy, chips and soft drinks, kids will go for these easy-to-snab choices. Converting a child accustomed to junk food to a he althier, more natural diet involves making wise choices every day.
Let them decide
Give kids a choice. For example, ask them if they prefer a banana or a plum, grapes or an apple. Thus, they will not feel forced to eat what their parents impose on them and will have the feeling of eating what they have chosen.
Try serving fruit differently
Freeze fresh fruit and serve it cold on a hot summer day. Frozen fruits are great as summer snacks. Try serving grapes or berries. They're so sweet, kids will feel like they're eating a fruity frozen treat!
Be active, stay hydrated
Fruit is an excellent source of hydration. During the summer, when children play more in the sun, it is important to take this into account. Make sure they're well hydrated by offering them fresh fruit during and after physical activity, when they're most likely to want something refreshing. Fruits very often have a very high water content: 92% for watermelon, 89% for peaches, 87% for plums and 81% for grapes.
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