I know that the struggle is real. Encouraging our kids to eat healthier can be difficult. I, myself, have had a kid or two in a full on temper-tantrum in the middle of the kitchen floor after denying an unhealthy treat and had kids completely losing it when I shut down requests for adding a sugary, over-processed snack into the shopping cart.
No mom finds a child's meltdown fun so I needed to find a way that would get my kiddos on my side about choosing healthier, whole food snacks.
I don't believe there is just ONE strategy that is the magic "fix all" but rather a multi-prong approach works best. I wanted to share this strategy with you as one idea you could include in your own multi-prong approach to supporting your kids healthy eating patterns.
I not only encourage healthier eating with this strategy but also get my kids actually excited about it. What I do is actually very simple: I give them some calculated amount of control.
I change the dynamic from, "Eat what I tell you to eat." to "Make your own snack, your way."
And WOW does that make a difference.
Think about it. You tell your kids you won't tell them what to do, that they get some amount of freedom, awesome, awesome freedom. They will at least be curious, if not completely sold on the idea.
My favorite way to do this is to let the kids create their own personal trail mix for the week. (They don't always last the whole week but that is kind of a good problem to have.)
Everyone gets their own container or jar. They create a trial mix masterpiece and then when somebody asks for a snack throughout the week they already have something they made themselves waiting for them.
I set up the kitchen before inviting the kids in. I decide on the healthy ingredients that might include:
- raw nuts
- raw seeds
- dried fruits
- cocoa nibs
- chooclate chips
- yogurt covered raisins
- raw coconut
I do lay down the rule that chocolate chips and yogurt raisins go in last. But other than that, each kid can create whatever mix they like!
This is a pretty easy way to get your kids excited about healthy eating. If you want to see how it goes down in my own kitchen, I included a short video of our recent trail mix making day!
I hope that this post has given you some ideas on how to encourage your own kiddos to choose healthier snacks and how to tip the odds in your favor. As always, if you try this idea please share the results with me! I love to hear from you!
Thank you so much for reading!