Focusing on just one new vegetable per meal could be a recipe for failure. Try three or four for better results.
Does your child squirm at the sight of lettuce? Run for the hills when tomatoes enter the room?
You’re not alone. Scores of parents battle with picky eaters every day, and often with little success. Some of it comes down to genetics-your child may be a “super taster” and this is accounting for their dislikes- but a lot of it is just stubborn behavior. Various experts say that over time, you actually can successfully widen their palate, however.
A study done earlier this year in Australia found that the more you offer vegetables to your picky eater, the more you can increase their acceptance and consumption. The key is to offer more than one vegetable at a time.
Thirty-two families participated in the study, which involved children between the age of 4 and 6.
All children involved ate very few vegetables regularly, at the beginning of the study.
Some children were introduced to one new vegetable at a time, and others had multiple new veggies given to them, simultaneously.
Researchers found that those who were offered multiple vegetables at once increased their consumption of the veggies by about twofold. This result lasted and was sustained even three months after the study was done.
Those who were given just one new vegetable however, didn’t increase their acceptance of the increased roughage.
So, load up their plate and keep at it. You might reap some surprising results.