How To Get Young Children To Eat Raw Food
One of the most common questions I’m asked is this: “how do you get your really young children excited and interested in raw food?” Well, here are some tried, tested and fun ways.
So you’re into raw food and you’ve read all the benefits, but what happens if your child isn’t in such a hurry to give up his pasta and tomato sauce? I have three nephews and each one has gone though a (lengthy) stage of calling me weird. They’ve also gone through stages of letting me feed them the food I eat. My eldest nephew loves avocados, thanks to my dad. My youngest loves raw chocolate. The middle one, well, he still calls me weird. However, when I looked after him for a fortnight at the age of fourteen I did get him eating a few raw vegetables before he had his beans on toast. All older children will eat some raw food if you explain the benefits clearly.
Making food appealing is easier than you may think, yet the starting point will be different for each child. Some children are fussy eaters, some are hearty eaters.
Here are some tried and tested pointers for small children:
Silly plates: This involves doing anything surreal with food. Children love the unexpected. Put food on dolly’s plates, or useoversized and mismatching cutlery. Try feeding dolly first. Feedyour belly button. Let your child feed you. Reverse roles, act like your child and call your child Mummy.
Fishing: When my daughter Evie was small we put goji berries, raisins andother dried foods in the bath. Evie fished them out, and then ate them.
Where food comes from: Get your child involved with gardening,wild fruit hunting, eating edible flowers, growing pots of sprouts, and making animal sprouts (use tights to make a face and grow sprouts inside. The sprouts will come out like hair all over the “animal”).
Hide and seek: I hide little food parcels around the house orgarden for Evie to seek out.
Blankie picnics: When it’s cold outside, we lay down a blanket or tablecloth and have a picnic inside with party cups and get dressed up and eat to party music in the presence of many dollies.
Eating in the car: It’s funny how children will eat in a car when they refuse to eat at home. Take advantage of it by preparing pots of cut up vegetables for all your car journeys.
Eating around the stupor market: That stupormarket trolley came in so handy when I couldn’t get Evie to sit still and eat. Avocados,bananas, punnets of berries and even cucumbers got demolished before we’d arrive at the checkout. I kept the labels to scan,though!
Making food together: This is a really important practise. When Evie was really little I’d put the juicer and cutting board on the floor. She’d eat as I made the food. She still does it now, sitting on the worktop. Make dough from ground flax and water and get them to shape it. Dehydrate it to make nibbly biscuits.
Funny faces: We use sprouts for hair, a tomato for the nose, red pepper for the lips and olives on cucumber rounds for the eyes. Suddenly, a drab salad snack is appealing and fun.
I hope this helps you in your quest to get more raw food into a child.