Kids Eat Your Vegetables

I’ve had posts about role models before, and this time it’s your turn.  Mothers are among the most influential people in a child’s life.  Research is showing evidence of this by how healthy their child eats.

Moms All Eyes On Your Eating

Moms, all your kids’ eyes are on your eating habits.  What you do makes a big difference (what was the last thing you ate in front of them?).  Read about the research findings right here.

This research saw two key trends with how many fruits and vegetables their toddlers ate during the week.  When their mother saw her child as a picky eater, the child were less likely to eat fruits or vegetables.  Children showed similar eating habits if the mothers didn’t eat many fruits or vegetables themselves.

You can easily see the role model concept in the second example.  If the child doesn’t see the mom do it, they don’t do it either.  But what about mom’s view of them being a picky eater.  I wondered how that mattered until I read further into the article.  Mothers with this viewpoint apparently didn’t push the fruits and veggies much once their child resisted.

Mom Has Power To Be A Powerful Influence On Healthy Eating

I agree with a conclusion made in this article.  If the mom eats more fruits and vegetables, their children are far more likely to do the same.  Even picky eaters can get enough food exposure over time to get used to the flavors and textures.

I myself have a couple of somewhat picky eaters.  One often says that something “tastes weird.”  The other one isn’t too bad, but she eats slowly and doesn’t always finish.  My oldest will eat nearly anything you put in front of her.

I have no idea how we got such different eaters, but my husband and I always have dinner with a balance of meat, starch, and vegetables or fruits.  We serve them a balance as well, regardless of their pickiness.  Over time, this has gradually gotten better.

I think this approach has helped our more “selective” eaters.  They at least know what to expect at supper.  I’m by no means a perfectly healthy eater, and we do have our share of treats at times.  But if nothing else, I think this consistency has taught our girls about what it takes to create a healthy meal.  This article has made me think even more about MY eating habits.

Well, moms, what about your eating habits?  Do you see a positive or negative influence on your kids’ eating patterns?  How do you handle picky eaters?

Creative Commons License photo credit: Doctor Grondo