By: Kristen Yarker
Is your child a picky eater? An important way to encourage picky kids to try new foods is to be a “trying new food” role model. As the saying goes: “actions speak louder than words”.
We’re constantly asking picky kids to try new foods. But be honest, when was the last time that you tried a new food (or re-tried a food that you didn’t like previously)?
Did you know that the physiology of our taste buds change as we age? These changes cause us to experience food differently. The result is that a food that you didn’t like as a child, you may enjoy now.
A fantastic side effect: you may discover new healthy foods that will contribute to improving your nutrition.
I recommend going about it by playing the new food challenge game. It’s easy, just pick a new food or recipe to try every week. Think once a week is too much? How about 2 new foods per month? Or, once a month?
I’ve found this to be an especially successful technique when working with families with picky school-age kids – kids who should have long ago grown out of the picky eating phase. It engages their love of adventure and exploring the world by creating a game of it.
I admit it. I play this game myself! In the past year I re-tried polenta, chia seeds, spaghetti squash, radicchio, Belgium endive, and okra. And, I discovered that I now love polenta, chia seeds, spaghetti squash, and Belgium endive. All of these are now a regular part of my eating habits. Radicchio was just okay. And, I’ve discovered how to make non-slimy okra – fry it! I’ll now include radicchio and okra occasionally. On my radar this winter are Brussels sprouts and millet.
What new foods have you tried recently? Did you like them? Share your experience in the comments section below.
Kristen Yarker, MSc, RD helps you experience the pleasure (and energy) of healthy eating. After 6 years of only working with the toughest customers (i.e. picky kids), she is now serving adults who want amazing energy to live their busy lives without sacrificing the pleasure of delicious food. Discover how (and get recipes too) at www.KristenYarker.com