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Finding nutritious food that your child will actually like is not an easy task. Every child has a different personality as well as a different appetite. The amount of food children eat varies from day to day and meal to meal, and that’s just how it is.
We all have different preferences, and it is no secret that kids are often critical of what is served on the table. If the child eats less or just wants to eat a particular dish, you may find it annoying.
Fortunately, you very rarely need to panic when your child’s appetite changes. However, what you should do is learn the best healthy food for toddlers and older kids and introduce a well-rounded diet in their daily lives.
In this article, we list some fun and healthy ways to increase your child’s appetite, making sure it stays healthy and robust. This will make it easier for you to continue discovering new favorite dishes, even if the child is not over-enthusiastic in the beginning.How do you get your kids to eat nutritious especially if they have a very small appetite and are always looking for excuses to skip their meals? Keep reading to find out!Click To Tweet
Make Breakfast A Ritual
For a family with children, breakfast can be a struggle every morning. Sure, it’s great if the day’s first meal is a quiet moment together, but often it’s the other way around.
Usually, it’ stressful with tired children and adults rushing around. But with perseverance, time, and some clever tricks, it is possible to change this.
Breakfast is one of the most important meals of the day. It can help keep them energized enough to cope with school, play, and daily activities.
Try to vary the breakfast, for example, by having a special breakfast for each day of the week. This way, children get used to the fact that breakfast can look different, and it will make them look forward to eating in the morning.
Meals On a Regular Schedule
One thing all parents can agree on is that a child needs structure in their life. Even though words like routine and eating schedules might sound strict, they help children make better choices in the future.
It is good to find an even eating rhythm with regular meals. If the child receives food at the same time each day, they know what to expect.
It will also boost the digestive system which leads to a better appetite. Regular times also provide an even blood sugar level, which reduces mood swings and the child getting tired due to being hungry.
Increase Appetite by Serving Something the Child Likes With Each Meal
If you have a child who is extra picky, the right way to solve this is to serve various kinds of foods, not only those they like. But do not force the child to taste things they dislike. It will only cause trouble and food waste.
Ensure that there is always something that the child enjoys on the table, Feel free to mix it up with a source of protein, a source of carbohydrates, or vegetables and fruit.
Ensuring that there is always something that the child likes on the table is also about trust and security. This makes the meal more predictable for the child, and they can trust that there will be something to eat.
Serve Different Foods Separately
Studies have shown that children generally prefer the individual serving style.
Children who do not want to eat can be overwhelmed when they see too many different kinds of food on a plate. It can make them lose their appetite.
If children get a mixed salad with several ingredients, they will focus on what they dislike and remove it instead of tasting the salad. Therefore, it may be easier for children if all the vegetables are given in separate bowls on the table, and they are allowed to pick and choose.
Serve several different vegetables in small bowls, preferably both raw and cooked, and let the child pick what they want.
Grocery Shopping and Cooking Together Could Increase Appetite in Toddlers
Another way to increase children’s interest in food is to let them be in the kitchen, give them simple tasks, and allow them to learn about different foods.
A good tip to increase your child’s interest in food can be to go grocery shopping together. This allows them to see a wider variety of foods and talk about healthy nutrition, which may motivate a picky eater to try something new.
The goal is to arouse curiosity. Always practice kitchen safety and make them learn by playing, involving them in the cooking process. Give them the opportunity to touch, mix, feel and experiment with the food.
Just make sure that the time spent in the kitchen is about creating positive experiences.
Allowing children to participate and learn makes you bond. Ultimately, it makes them more intrigued to taste the final meal.
A Nice Atmosphere is Good for Increasing Hunger
A good atmosphere around the dining table should be given the highest priority. This is the time of day when the whole family is gathered. It is a perfect opportunity to talk, share some laughs, and enjoy being together.
It is good if the child can associate food and mealtime with something positive, something to look forward to.
Things that usually make the meals appealing are, for example, that the food is served in an appetizing way, cut and served in fun shapes, that you eat together in a calm and nice setting without a TV on or anyone talking on the phone.
It is good if the family makes a habit of eating together as often as possible. When you sit down to eat at the table, the children learn to value food and a shared meal.
Don’t Worry How to Increase Hunger Naturally in Children is a Common Concern
Wanting to increase a child’s appetite is a common concern among parents since proper nutrition is essential for their development.
A sure shot tool is to prepare a healthy breakfast every morning. A pre-fixed schedule of daily meals should also be encouraged as it sets a routine for the child to follow. Teaching the child about the vast array of foods, picking healthy ingredients, and cooking meals is also a very important and fun activity that might excite their curiosity.
At last, as parents, we are role models and the ones who set good examples for our children. Show that you enjoy the food and dare to try something new. This way, you’ll have a real advantage in giving your children a healthy relationship with food and enhancing their appetite.
Do your children have a good appetite?
Krystle Cook – the creator of Home Jobs by MOM – put her psychology degree on a shelf and dived into a pile of diapers and dishes instead. She is a wife and mother to two rambunctious boys, sweating it out in her Texas hometown. She loves cooking, DIY home projects, and family fun activities.