‘They’ refers to kids….my kids that is—actually, mostly just Alex. Sophie has her oddities too, including an obsession sugar and aversion to tomato sauce; but at least she intakes a good balance of fruits, veggies and protein along with the not-so-healthy. It’s not that Alex doesn’t eat healthy food, it’s just that he doesn’t have a good balance of foods, in this mom’s opinion, anyway. He’d live on meat and berries if I let him—he’s like a bear I guess.
I know I’m not alone. There are others out there with family members of all ages who are what some would call ‘picky’, but the fact is I just don’t understand it. I am a lover of all food. When I fight with my kids about trying new foods, it’s only partially because of the obvious ‘Mom’ reasons; I honestly feel bad for them because of the deliciousness they would be missing if they didn’t try it.
Because of my love of all kinds of food, I, as a parent, do insist my kids try new foods. I don’t force them, but I strongly recommend to the point of occasional bribery. I do this because of the long term gains for them. As we grow from childhood to adulthood, our body chemistry changes, and so do our tastes. If a person doesn’t like broccoli at five, but tries it from time-to-time as they grow-up, they might find they like it when they’re a bit older.
Maybe I’m just trying to convince myself that my son will someday eat more than just four types of vegetables—broccoli, squash, beets and corn–without me insisting. I know it’s great that he likes those four, and maybe I should just include more of them in our menus instead of worrying so much about variety. After all, he does eat other veggies, but quickly and without enjoyment. I remember though, when he was a baby, he loved peas and asparagus, as well as green beans and potatoes–I hope that someday, he grows back into them.
That’s all I’m thinking for now…Happy Family Cooking,
P.S. To see how frequently I honestly think about getting my kids more variety in their eating habits, here are a few other posts on the topic: Getting Kids to Try New Foods: 5 Things that May Work, Kids, Eating and Life, Food Bribery–Would You Pay Your Kids to Try a Food?