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Walking the walk

Walking the walk

It is important to remember that kids learn from repetition and observation. They will learn more by watching what you do and how you react to foods than they will from what you say. If your child is your motivation for changing the way you eat and how you feed your family, be conscious of approaching new foods with a fun and positive attitude.

It is important to remember that kids learn from repetition and observation. They will learn more by watching what you do and how you react to foods than they will from […]

Make the preparation and eating of food a nourishing and joyful adventure. Approach it with an open and curious mind, and you will be encouraging your bub (and older kids) to do the same. Make sure both parents are on board with this, as it doesn’t work if one of you screws up your face and says ‘Eugh! I am NOT eating that!’ The child will learn that behaviour, based on these reactions, and often reject foods that they would otherwise enjoy and be happy to eat!

Kids learn to be open to new flavours by repeated exposure. Remember – every taste and texture to them is an utterly new sensation, so keep offering foods and be supportive and encouraging.

Also, your baby up to this point has only ever sucked as a way of taking in food. Her reflex is to push her tongue out, so even though it appears that she is pushing food out (and you may assume she doesn’t like the taste), it is in fact a very new skill to learn, which can sometimes take time.

Fussy eating
Fussy eating is often a sign of an upset in the natural balance of microorganisms in the gut (gut dysbiosis), or a sign that your bub requires more of specific nutrients. Even though it may seem impossible to get fussy eaters to eat fermented veggies, I find this to be one of the best ways to open up their palates to new foods. Give it a go, and remember, being creatures of repetition, the rule of 10 applies. Studies show that parents often give up at around 5 attempts (understandably so), whereas 10 seems to be the magic number. Persistence pays off; just be sure to persist in a positive, calm manner to avoid building resistance against new foods.

Preparation is key
Having a well-prepped kitchen and well-stocked pantry is essential for providing yourself and your bub with nourishing food. It’s when you don’t have any pre-prepped meals or versatile, nutrient-dense ingredients ready that things tend to fall off the wagon.

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