Sitting down with your kids for a family meal is great. Until they start to complain. Right?
Let’s be honest. Fielding complaints at the dinner table is an all too common occurrence. And it’s one that can really take the wind out of your sails when it comes to preparing good meals.
Picky Eating is a Common Problem
First, know that you’re not alone.
A recent Stanford study followed 120 kids and their parents from 2-11 years of age. The researchers found that, at any given age, between 13 and 22 percent of kids were picky eaters.
Parents of picky eaters were more likely to report that their children consumed a limited variety of food choices, required food prepared in specific ways, expressed stronger likes or dislikes for food, and threw tantrums when denied foods.
Other studies have found similar statistics, most finding that anywhere between 15 and 25 percent of kids are picky eaters.
All Kids Complain, Some of the Time
Even if your kid isn’t technically a “picky eater” chances are that they can sometimes be picky. In my family, even my most adventurous little eater knows how to dig his heels in and complain with the best of them.
In fact, the Stanford study found that as many as 50 percent of the kids sampled reported some picky eating habits like:
- restricting intake of vegetables;
- being unwilling to try new foods;
- and having strong food preferences — often leading parents to provide their child a meal different from the rest of the family.
Getting Kids to Eat More Variety Without Whining is Tough Business
In my reader survey, 91 percent of parents told me they sometimes feel frustrated by feeding their kids. The dinner table can feel like a battlefield.
The number one challenge parents face, among a long list of mealtime challenges, is getting kids to eat more variety. Here’s what one reader told me:
“I wish my kids would to trying new things. I like to cook, but my efforts are usually met with resistance, or I’m forced to serve ‘old reliable foods’ (read: boring) that I know everyone will eat.”
And here’s what another parent said:
“I wish I could eliminate the whining about not wanting something I’ve prepared. It’s so frustrating to spend time making what I feel is healthy, tasty meal only to have them push it aside and ask for something else.”
21 Picky Eating Hacks to Improve the Way Your Child Eats
In working with kids, I’ve found that most don’t do well with radical change. Instead, small, easy changes can add up to have a big impact.
That’s why I wrote 21 Picky Eating Hacks: to help parents learn proven strategies to increase “food appeal” and nudge your child toward choosing healthy options without all the whining.
Here’s What You’ll Learn in this FREE ebook
- Section 1: how to refresh your parenting strategy at mealtimes
- Section 2: tips on low-stress learning opportunities that can happen away from the table
- Section 3: smart snacking ideas that can help better fuel your child between meals
- Section 4: simple strategies to help you master the art of marketing your meals like a pro
- Section 5: ways to involve and empower your child to make healthy eating choices
Three Simple Tips to Get You Started
Tell Me What You Think!
Once you’ve downloaded your book, try a few hacks and get back to me! I’d love to hear your stories, recipes, successes and any failing forward with food in your household.