Feeding your child a varied diet often gives them a good start in life and provides them with better health and lot of energy for fun and activities. Atleast 3-5 servings of different vegetables and 2-3 servings of fruits are ideal.
Often kids are picky eaters when it comes to food, especially vegetables and fruits. The solution is to make the diet varied by trying out new ways of including vegetables and fruits in their diet. It is important that the child has vegetables and fruits of different colours to be able to have a more balanced diet.
Here are some useful tips to keep children have a more balanced diet.
Why not try soups– If your child is the one who hates the sight of some vegetables, why not try making them vegetable soups.
Blend it well after cooking and add little cheese and seasoning. Try with the vegetables they like better and then as they start eating, try adding other vegetables next time. You can also add chicken, beans, lentils etc to the soup to make the soup more appealing.
Hide vegetables and fruits in their daily food. Try adding finely chopped carrots, tomatoes, spinach etc to their pasta or omlette after sauteing them well. Fried rice, noodles, sandwitches, puris, burgers, patties etc can also have some hidden vegetables. If the child still resists it, try adding a bit of ketchup or soy sauce to the dish.
Offer the vegetables when they are hungry. When the child is really hungry and if you offer them vegetables or fruits cooked and presented in an attractive manner, they might gobble it up. Cut potatoes/carrots/ sweet potatoes/ beans/capsicum etc to the size of finger chips, brush with little butter/oil and bake for 18-20 minutes at 180 degree celcius.
This will make the vegetables crispy and tasty. You can stir fry the vegetables as well introduce them as home made chips. Topping baked potato with sauteed vegetables and little cheese is also worth trying.
Try adding fresh fruit to cereals and desserts- Fresh fruits are always a better snack than readymade ones. Keep them handy for the child. Add finely chopped fruits and dry fruits to their favourite breakfast cereal or as a pancake filling. Fruits can be grilled for a few minutes and added if the child likes it that way.
Finely chop a variety of fruits and serve with a drizzle of honey/ syrup/ chocolate sauce and the kids are sure to try it. Add fresh fruits to icecreams like in a banana split or add them to their pudding.
Try mixing up different juices like pomegranate and orange or make a smoothie with yoghurt/ coconut milk/ milk etc. They all count towards the kids daily portion of fruits.