For almost every parents, especially mothers, nothing can be more tiring and stressful than the mealtime with their children. While every parent wants their child to eat healthy and nutritious food, you will seldom come across a child you will have their food sans any commotion or tantrums. From stomach ache to a headache, they come up with every possible excuse to skip finishing their meal. While the situation can be quite frustrating, parents need to keep their calm. Shouting or punishing the child will not help the cause. For all such helpless parents, here is a snippet of some of the creative tips and tricks to make the mealtime with children all the more exciting.
Switch off the electronic gadgets at mealtime:
Kids glued to the television or the smartphones during the mealtime may come across as a fruitful technique to make your child have his/her food. However, the practice is extremely unhealthy and will by no means benefit the child. A better approach would be to switch off the television and the smartphone and keep them out of the reach of your child. In this way, the whole family will be able to connect better over the meal. You can instead discuss the day's activities or share interesting stories with each other. Believe us, your child's eating habits will undergo an unbelievable improvement.
Feed your child only when they are hungry:
Many children fuss over their meal not because they don't like the food, but because they are not hungry. While it is good to follow a routine and feed your child at the same time every day, do not force them to eat if they are not hungry as this can trigger a stomach ache, acid reflux, or other digestive problems.
Be your creative best:
Children tend to get bored easily. Thus, serving them the same food day after day will have a negative impact on their eating. They will look for excuses to skip the meal. It can be a bit tiring for you but try to make the platter as creative as possible. Most kids love to binge on pizzas and pasta. Instead of going for the readymade ones, you can prepare one at home and stuff it with lots of fresh and healthy vegetables. Instead of rolling out the regular round chapatis, you can try out the shapes of different cartoon characters (preferably your child's favourite cartoon) and then garnish it with different fruits and vegetables. Your child will be more than happy to finish their food.
Unleash the junior chef in your child:
Be it in gardening or in the kitchen, children love to be around their parents, helping them with the household chores. While things can be a little messy initially, don't discourage or shoo your child away. Instead, let them assist you in the kitchen (such as washing the vegetables, passing you the masala containers, laying the table, to name a few) and appreciate them for their hard work. At mealtime, tell everyone that your little chef has prepared a lip-smacking dish. With all the appreciation and encouragement, they will not only be happy but will also finish the food without any struggle.
Prepare the same food for everyone:
All parents want the best for their child but learn to lead by examples. How can you expect your child to eat the healthy and less spicy food when you are having a spicy one yourself. Seeing the grown-ups enjoying a different meal will discourage the child to have their simple and healthy meal. With the child around, always remember to prepare the same meal for everyone and have it (at least once in a day) together.