It is very common for many children especially toddlers to be picky eaters. Sometimes they will get fixated on one or two foods. In general, they want to eat what they see their siblings and parents eat. If their brother or sister is eating a cookie you can’t expect them to eat an apple!

Here we share six ways you can help improve the nutrition of you and your family.

1. Remove junk food from your home

This helps remove the temptation. Remove things like candy, soda, juice, chips, cake and cookies. If it is not there, then they cannot eat it.

2. Offer healthy alternatives

Foods like fruit, vegetables, and nuts (provided there are no nut allergies). Have some fruit and vegetables cut up and ready to eat.

3. Take your children food shopping with you

Having your children pick out healthy foods with you, will encourage them to eat those foods. It gives them a feeling of control and responsibility.

4. Involve your children in cooking their meals

Allowing them to help prepare the meal encourages them to eat the meal. You can also use this time to learn what they like or don’t like.

5. Encourage a variety of different color foods

Have your children associate the colors with the different foods. Plus, different color foods contain different vitamins and minerals.

6. Set an example for your children by eating a healthy diet

Children often mimic their parents as well as their peers. According to an article entitled “Influences on the Development of Children’s Eating Behaviours: From Infancy to Adolescence”, by Dr, Leann Birch, Jennifer S. Savage, and Alison Ventura: “Children learn about food by observing the eating behaviors modeled by others. For example, research reveals that children’s intake of fruits, vegetables, and milk increased after observing adults consuming the foods.35 When children observed the eating behavior of their peers, the effect was similar such that selection and consumption of vegetables increased.36 Thus, positive social modeling is an indirect, yet effective practice for promoting healthier diets in children.”