Kids will make good choices, taking fruits and vegetables over less nutritious foods, when given a chance. Encourage healthy eating by creating a supportive environment, where parents and other caregivers model healthy eating. Involving children in shopping, cooking family meals and even gardening are other important steps in getting kids interested in fruits and vegetables.
- When at the store, talk about the names, shapes, colors, and sizes of fruits and vegetables.
- Have them help put items in bags.
- Count the items as they are put in the bag.
- Spell the names of fruits and vegetables.
- Talk about how fruits and vegetables are grown and where they are grown.
- Talk about fruits and vegetables eaten in other cultures, and try new ones.
All ages can learn the importance of good hand washing and sanitation techniques. Use “kid-size” tools—if the counter is too high, use a sturdy step stool or have children sit at the kitchen table.
- Give them play foods or pots, pans, bowls and spoons to help “cook.”
- Have them help measure ingredients
- Have them help combine and stir ingredients
- Make simple, no-bake recipes.