Vegetables do not taste good? Are you kidding me? Are you serious when you say that! Even the largest vegetable muffle made with a few small tricks for vitamin-rich enjoyment. Pressure and reproaches, however, bring nothing – to make children feel like fresh vegetables, creativity is in demand.
Vegetables for children – a sometimes difficult topic. There are little gourmets who love vegetables and like to eat it in every way. Some children, however, spurn everything that is green and crisp. Nutrition experts advise parents not to be disturbed when the consumption of vegetables is temporarily neglected. Pressure and allegations are counterproductive as forcing kids to feel like eating vegetables is very difficult. Parents must have a positive and creative approach to the matter.
Vegetables for children
To inspire children for healthy enjoyment, that means to make food become alive by all means. Instead of canned vegetables and frozen foods, buy fresh vegetables as often as possible and let your child touch them, taste them and try them before preparing them. How does a raw potato taste like a cooked one? What does a ripe tomato smell like, how does it feel and tastes different from the more immature specimens? Does cucumber taste different from shell than without? A visit to the weekly market also makes the little ones feel like healthy food and, by the way, trains their eyes for seasonality and quality.
How safe are European vegetables?
Fresh vegetables are part of a balanced diet and provide children with important vitamins. But not least since the EHEC crisis in 2011, many consumers are still skeptical when it comes to the quality and burden of European vegetables. Especially parents ask themselves how healthy are our vegetables really? However, there is no cause for concern or even health concerns. If you pay attention to freshness and quality and wash the vegetables well, you can enjoy it without regret.
Vegetables from the glass greenhouse
By the way, the vegetables may also come from the glass greenhouse. Jochem Wolthuis from the Dutch Fruit and Vegetable office says: “Especially greenhouses offer a maximum of protection against germs thanks to their closed system.” In almost all modern glass greenhouses, beneficial insects are used to pollinate plants and to control pests – for example, bumblebees for pollinating tomato and eggplant plants. Chemistry and pesticides? None. Because, according to Wolthuis, “where bumblebees live, insecticides naturally have no business.”
Vegetables and creativity for children
Increasing the chance that your child eats fresh vegetables requires creativity. Show your child how diverse a healthy diet can be. A toadstool of tomatoes, a hedgehog of carrots, small UFOs of radishes and cucumbers, pizza with a funny face of zucchini and peppers, homemade skewers – children make vegetables twice as much fun when it is nicely arranged. Even a little trick is allowed. Many children eat more vegetables if it is not directly noticeable. Like the turkey nuggets wrapped in a crunchy zucchini coat. And if children strictly refuse vegetables, the blender can be helpful. Purée the vegetables and mix it with the food. American scientists found in a study that children eat more vegetables prepared that way.
Children and vegetables: The Dos and Don’ts
- Think of your role model and eat together with your child
- Do not be too strict. If your child does not like a certain type of vegetable on the fourth try, do not apply pressure and try another variety (tip: sweet vegetables such as peppers, carrots or even tomatoes are often especially good).
- Have your child decide: “Which vegetables do you want today?”
- Let your child cook with you. Vegetables can be cut very early under the supervision and with a special children’s knife.
Many parents have a serious issue when it comes to feeding vegetables to their children. Yes, it is not that easy however a little creativity can solve this problem right away.