When I was a child I loved all fruits and vegetables. I remember my younger brother didn’t like pickles on his sandwiches or burgers. I had no problem eating them for him until he started to get older and decided he no longer disliked them but actually loved them. Our taste buds change they grow, they adapt and as we get older we learn to enjoy the new and different tastes.
Growing up my parents would expect us to at least try something twice because the first time your taste buds might reject it if it’s new and you’ve never tasted that taste before. This brings me back to when I was about eleven years old and my Dad had what seemed to me at the time a HUGE jar of pickled artichokes. Dad was enjoying some for a snack and asked me to try some. I did and I remember thinking – “Yuck! How could he like these?” I ate it but wasn’t to thrilled about it at the time. After this my Dad encouraged me to have some again, I did and several times after that. Time had passed and one day I asked my dad why he never bought those one things in the huge jar. haha. He wasn’t sure at the time what I was talking about an I hadn’t remembered the name but once we figured out what it was I was describing he chuckled and said “oh the artichokes…so, you’ve decided you like them after all huh? Sure we can buy them again”. Ever since I have loved Artichokes pickled or fresh and every time I take a bite of them my taste buds are in heaven and think about this story.
My point in all this is that if we incorporate the good stuff now and introduce a rainbow of colors in our kids diets they will see, taste and learn to enjoy the good stuff. I have two young children and I always try to do this because I know it will be beneficial to their health. For a while my son who is six years old would always want to pick out his bell peppers and I would encourage him to eat them with other things on his plate. He would an low and behold now he loves them!
I always make sure to praise my children’s choices when they do eat well. In our home we don’t buy what would be considered unhealthy treats, snacks and foods. We grow most of our own veggies, I try to buy organic if possible and keep fresh whole foods in our home. But if we are out to to dinner or at a friends/family members or some place where they may not have the things we have at home. I’m always a proud mama when I see they choose to eat things that are on the healthier side. As I know they may have had the option to grab something that wasn’t so healthy.
Let’s try to teach our children to pick the healthy choice when they’re on their own. We can do this by keeping snacks, breakfast, lunch and dinners full of fresh wholesome food with lot’s of color!
Red: Tomatoes, Radishes, Apples, Red Pepper, Raspberries and Strawberries
Yellow: Lemons, Summer Squash, Pineapple, Yellow Pepper
Green: Kale, Broccoli, Collard Greens, Spinach, Limes, Kiwi and Avocado
Orange: Carrots, Yam, Squashes and Pumpkin
White: Cauliflower, Parsnips, Mushrooms, Garlic and Onion
Blue/Violet: Blueberries, Eggplant, Grapes and Red Cabbage