Three Common Mealtime Questions Answered
Posted by Healthy Living
March 24, 2017
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Having family meals on regular basis often comes with its own problems. Below are three common questions that are answered by a Health Professional:
Question: How do I deal with picky kids who won’t eat the meals I’ve prepared?
Having a child who is a picky eater can be challenging and make meal times feel like a battlefield. Some strategies for helping you child include:
- Allow kids to be “produce pickers” by letting them pick out the fruits and vegetables at the store.
- Encourage children to help prepares meals because it will get them excited about the food.
- Offer the same foods for everyone in the family whenever possible. Do not be a “short-order cook.”
- When introducing new food, be sure to only offer one new food at a time so as not to overwhelm the child.
- Be a good role model for your child. You are the person that they learn many of the eating habits from so be an example of trying new foods.
Question: I never feel like there is time for family meals. What
are some strategies for making family dinner happen?
Making time for family meals does require some
- It is important to try and find a time that will be best suited to
the family schedule.
- Try making preparation of the meal about family time and
not just the meal itself.
- Give every family member an age appropriate job to
help prepare dinner. This may include setting the table and helping to prepare
small parts of the meal.
- Plan meals that are nutritious but realistic. If you
do not have time to cook a huge dinner try to make healthy meals that are not
very time consuming.
- Make meal
times enjoyable and pleasant. This creates a positive experience which increases the likelihood
that each family member will want to make time to participate.
Question: One of my kids has
Celiac disease but my other kids do not. How do I prepare meals for everyone?
- One way to feed everyone is to make meals with
common, gluten-free grains. For example, rice is gluten-free and pairs well
with stir fry, broiled chicken, re-fried beans, and other common foods. Look for
gluten-free recipes that the whole family can enjoy.
- Another idea is to do
build-your-own meals where each member of the family’s plates will look a
little different anyway. For example, you can do build your own fajitas and let
your child with Celiac Disease use gluten-free tortillas. If other members of
the family want to try the gluten-free options as well, go ahead and share so
that your one child will not feel like an outsider.
- Many companies are creating
gluten-free versions of typical grains, such as pasta, so try out these grains
out with your family. They may not even notice the difference!
This information was found on the Utah Family Meals Website.