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How to Convince Your Toddler to Eat the Meal You Prepared

Kids have a very selective appetite, sometimes they refuse to eat the healthy food you prepared for them. Although you've lured them by the toys and enticed them by the smells, you failed. So, what else can you do in this occasion?

I once lived with a Japanese family, when I worked in Tokyo. They had a cute 3-years-old little boy; he was playful like an elf. I was surprised, therefore, when I saw that he always sat down besides the table and ate his meal on time, just like a satisfied little cat.

I asked the mother of the boy for the secret, and she told me that there's no way to force your toddlers or lure them to eat what they don't like, and the only secret is to cook the proper meal, which should have three characters as follows.

1. The meal should be colorful. A proper meal for toddlers should contain at least four kinds of colors, and it must looks bright and vivid. Because all kids like painting, they love bright colors; a meal with several bright and vivid colors will catch their eyes.

2. The every ingredient of the meal should have a proper shape. For examples, the boy's mother always turns the eggs into small yellow cubes, which like the building blocks; and she'll turn a sausage into several parts, each part like a mini octopus. I believe a meal like this will turn the boy's lunch into one of his games.

3. The meal should not be cooked too soft. Children like bite and chow, and biting something is not only their nature, but also the necessary practice for their teeth. If a meal is too soft to practice their teeth, they will lose the interest of the meal instantly. That is why they prefer to bite their toys or fingers.

In a word, prepare your meal in a proper way, and let your elves enjoy the game of eating.

Sat, 04 Apr 2009 13:02:11 +0000

It's also fun to use cookie cutters and make the food into different shapes, like dinosaurs, stars, hearts, etc. =) I know my boys love that... They also love broccoli, we pretend that each floret is a little tree and that they are lumberjacks coming to clear the forest. And carrots give them super powers... Super vision and super strength. =)

Tue, 07 Apr 2009 07:45:15 +0000

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