How do you get kids to want to eat healthy?

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LocavoreT
Junior Burger
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2014/06/09 15:09:54 (permalink)

How do you get kids to want to eat healthy?

I have been trying to incorporate more healthier food options to my children's diet however all they every want is fast food like McDonald's. How do I change their idea of delicious food with healthy choices?
#1

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    Michael Hoffman
    Double-chop Porterhouse
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    Re:How do you get kids to want to eat healthy? 2014/06/09 15:26:06 (permalink)
    You wait till they reach middle age and they'll do it on their own.
    #2
    felix4067
    Filet Mignon
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    Re:How do you get kids to want to eat healthy? 2014/06/09 17:12:27 (permalink)
    I'm honestly not sure how to do it once they've gotten used to a diet of fast food. My family starts kids on healthy food from the beginning, with fast food kept as a special occasion thing. If they've never had anything other than good food, they don't know any different.
     
    I do know Kraft (and probably others) is making mac & cheese with veggie pasta, which can help sneak nutrition into them. And there are a bunch of cake, cookie, and brownie recipes using black beans or zucchini or carrots or a combination of them so it tastes like dessert but is actually healthy. Maybe try making burgers at home instead of hitting McD's, cutting your own potatoes to make baked fries, etc.?
    #3
    ScreamingChicken
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    Re:How do you get kids to want to eat healthy? 2014/06/09 18:02:38 (permalink)
    Sometimes getting them involved in the food prep processes can help, too.  Instead of asking, "Do you want asparagus tonight?" try "We're having asparagus tonight.  How would you like to prepare it?" instead.  Give them a short list of healthy foods you'd like to see them eat more often and encourage them to seek out recipes.
    #4
    Foodbme
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    Re:How do you get kids to want to eat healthy? 2014/06/10 04:06:58 (permalink)
    If you start them out with good healthy food from the Git-Go and don't let them eat junk food, they won't dwell on it so much.
    http://www.eatingwell.com/recipes_menus/collections/healthy_eating_kids
    How do young kids get Fast Food like McDonalds?
    THEIR PARENTS HAVE TO DRIVE THEM THERE!
    Take the keys away from the parents.
    My mother had a saying when parents would make statements like the OP here----------------"Who's the Parent?" "Who's running the Show?" 
    She also said, "Consistent Discipline starts from Day One!" and "Don't say no and then say yes". 
    #5
    felix4067
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    Re:How do you get kids to want to eat healthy? 2014/06/10 11:46:30 (permalink)
    I just had a thought... Some kids will eat almost anything if they can eat it with toothpicks. Cut up chunks of vegetables, cooked meat, fruit, etc. and instead of silverware give them a cup of toothpicks (the decorated ones are fun, and always cheap if you buy them after a holiday). Same idea but different is to make kebabs, and then they can assemble their own with things they want from the choices you give them. Taco bars are an idea as well, with them choosing what they want from the options you provide.
    #6
    ivarlucas
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    Re:How do you get kids to want to eat healthy? 2014/06/11 13:00:18 (permalink)
    The best way I have noticed to gets kids to eat healthy is to get them involved like Chef Amber. She is an 11 year old who understands the importance of eating healthy while also helping others to do the same.  There is a great article on Chef Amber and allows you to view her cooking videos as well. This will make you rethink about getting you kids involved early in eating healthy.
     
    I found this great info at
    #7
    Foodbme
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    Re:How do you get kids to want to eat healthy? 2014/06/11 14:16:29 (permalink)
    I'll help you:
    http://chefambershea.com/
    http://www.chefambermarie.com/
    Not sure which one it is
    #8
    Sundancer7
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    Re:How do you get kids to want to eat healthy? 2014/06/11 16:03:59 (permalink)
    Both of my grandchildren attend a private school (Christian Academy of Knoxville)  Their cafeteria serves 95% healthy food and both my grandboys now prefer that.  Sweets are a rare event for them.
     
    Paul E. Smith
    Knoxville, TN
    #9
    MetroplexJim
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    Re:How do you get kids to want to eat healthy? 2014/06/12 13:12:43 (permalink)
    The French and Italians figured this out eons ago:  sauces.
     
    And, never overcook the veggies.
     
    I liked ivarlucas' idea about the toothpicks as well.
     
    #10
    bartl
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    Re:How do you get kids to want to eat healthy? 2014/06/12 14:25:37 (permalink)
    First of all, you have to decide what healthy food is. There are many differences of opinion there and you have to separate the fad from the fact. How many people here kept hearing "eat your liver, it's healthy" for you while growing up? By taking a middle ground, emphasizing fresh ingredients rather than processed (or recognizing what sort of processing is better or worse; I just saw a commercial lumping frozen vegetables with fast food as "bad food").
     
    Second, you run into the time sense problem. A lot of unhealthy food, particularly heavily marketed unhealthy food, contains strong flavors. These tend to overload the brain, which adjusts so that the intense flavors become "normal" and normal flavors become "underflavored". While adults who realize this can eat what they consider to be underflavored food until they're acclimated, children have far less patience, and will often reject the promise of future reward for  current one. Therefore, you should expect a stage, probably lasting a month or two, where what you consider to be unhealthy food is forbidden. This will seem like a punishment to the kids, but, once they get acclimated to the more healthy food, they will find the unhealthy food doesn't taste anywhere nearly as good as they remember. Keep the unhealthy food they still find edible for an occasional treat.
     
    Bart
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