Do you have veggie-chomping kids? Well, lucky you, because most of us do not.
Sit down. Take a deep breath. We have some shocking news.
A survey released today says that three out of four parents with kids aged between 2-12 describe getting their kids to eat vegetables as a “daily struggle”.
But maybe it’s time to stop the struggle. Nutritionist Susie Burrell has her own perspective on why we should stop stressing about the daily greens, and here it is:
Generally speaking, kids do not like vegetables. Why? – Because we, the parents are so desperate for them to eat something orange and green on a daily basis, do not teach our kids to like vegetables. It is really that simple.
Think about it. Kids like the foods we teach them to like.
We reward with lollies, party foods, even fruit on a daily basis; we teach them that they will get dessert if they eat their boring main meal. When they behave well we hand out sweet treats and take these away when they are not so good. It is our habit of craving and treating ourselves with sweet foods that basically infers that the rather bland tasting vegetables are inferior.
It is also crucial to remember that kids, small kids in particular do not need a lot of food. This is in contrast to our belief that they always need more, and that heaven forbid they are not eating enough.
So, when our kids have a couple of pieces of sweet fruit or a couple of kids-sized yoghurt treats, along with some milk and juice, when they turn away their vegetables at the end of a long day, it is most likely because they are not that hungry (and probably very tired).