“I struggle with healthy snacking, especially having a picky 3-year old in the house.”
I receive messages like this in my inbox on the regular, so I thought it was time to share some tips on how to get your picky eaters (and you) to eat better foods and more of a variety of foods!
I absolutely understand how frustrating it can be when you have a child who is insanely picky about what he or she eats. My 12-year-old son refuses to eat almost everything I make for him, and my four-year-old daughter just wants to drink her calories all the time. Ugh!
The struggle is real mama, so let me share some tips with you to help make mealtime more pleasant for everyone and less like a battle of wills:
1.) Get Creative:
Make food look more interesting by using tools like cookie and crinkle cutters to add different shapes and sizes and peak interest for foods that usually make kids want to run the other way like avocados, sweet potatoes, and zucchini.
Combine foods that your kids don’t seem to like as much with those that they eat all the time. If they like meatballs, turkey meatballs, or meatloaf, you could ground up some veggies that they normally wouldn’t eat and add them to the meatball mix to sneak in more veggies!
2.) Switch things up somewhat frequently
I know it sounds counterintuitive, but if you expose your children to a variety of foods early on and as often as possible this can help stop the pickiness with food before it can become a problem.
My 9-year old son is by far my best eater of all three of my kids because I exposed him to a lot of different foods (especially veggies) and flavors when he was younger. Now, he’s more willing to try and eat things.
3.) Try freezing certain foods:
So, I know this sounds a little crazy, but it absolutely works with some foods. First and foremost, you have to be careful with what foods and how big the pieces of frozen food are you are giving to your child. You also want to make sure your little one is old enough and has enough teeth to be able to chew the food up well and swallow. When my oldest was in preschool, he used to love eating peas and blueberries frozen. Otherwise, he would simply squash them and throw them on the floor. Yippee!
4.) Blend it up into a smoothie:
My kids LOVE smoothies, and they’re a GREAT go-to option in the morning for breakfast when everyone is scrambling to get out of the house.
You can hide almost anything in a smoothie: cauliflower rice, spinach, kale, broccoli, avocados, pumpkin, sweet potatoes…there are so many options. You just want to make sure you also add in some frozen fruit like bananas, berries, mangoes, pineapple, etc. for taste.
School Lunch Cheat Sheet
Can’t figure out how to pack a healthy school lunch either? Well, I’ve got ya covered there too! Most of us think that we are sending our kiddos to school with a well-balanced lunch, but we usually only end up sending them with a bag full of carbs and sugar-laden foods: sandwiches, fruit, chips, popcorn, yogurt, juice boxes, etc.
Be sure to save the following cheat sheet. Take a picture of it and hang it on your fridge if that’s more helpful for you. This little cheat sheet will help you to easily put together a well-balanced school lunch every day:
1.) Add A Protein: Nitrate-free deli meat, grilled chicken strips, shrimp, tuna, or salad.
2.) Add A Higher Quality Starch: Sweet potato, black beans, quinoa, lentil pasta, rice. You could add the protein and starch together for a yummy protein bowl.
3.) Add A Higher Quality Fat: Avocado, olives, eggs, nut butters, unsweetened coconut flakes.
4.) Add A Fruit (1-2 only): Blueberries, strawberries, kiwi, pears, apples, grapes, melon, oranges, papaya.)
5.) Add A Veggie: Sliced up cucumbers, carrots, green beans, snap peas, snap peas, zucchini, kale chips. You could even add some guacamole or hummus for dipping the veggies.
6.) Bonus Tips: Be sure to include a portion of food from each food group and switch up the foods for variety. If you know your kiddo will throw an absolute hissy fit if you don’t pack some cheese crackers or popcorn then add only a small amount of these treats into their lunches. Don’t give them such a huge portion that they fill up on the treats and don’t touch anything else. They will eat if they are hungry, so this is why you need to keep the treat servings small, so they can focus on eating the rest of their lunch.
Alrighty! Hope these tips help with your kiddos. Keep me posted.
Before I go, I want you to keep in mind that Halloween is right around the corner and it’s the official start of the holiday season! And for a lot of moms, this is when things really start to go downhill in terms of sticking to their workout routines, eating healthy, and prioritizing their own self-care.
If this sounds like you, I encourage you to do things differently this year. Let’s go INTO this upcoming holiday season with a game plan to stay consistent with exercise and on track with our own nutrition so that we are ready to make healthy and balanced choices, and feel stronger and more empowered this time of the year!
Don’t wait for the new year to kick start a new fitness routine and better nutrition habits! Seize the opportunity with my Consistent To The Core Challenge designed to focus on rehabbing your core post-baby, losing belly fat, and getting back to caring for yourself with exercise!
The October session begins tomorrow October 21st! If you’d like to learn more and sign up for the challenge then head to the following link: