Hello Supermoms! Does your kid eat enough green leafy vegetables?
There are numerous benefits of eating green vegetables. From boosting immunity to enhancing digestion, they are food champions. They especially play a key role in enhancing insulin-like growth factor or IGF. So, there is no way we can ignore this food component.
But we all know it’s not easy to get kids to like green leafy vegetables. “Mom, why is the food green?” is a recurring question in most households.
However, what if we told you there are ways to make these green wonders the new favorites on your kid’s plate? Here are some tips by Dt Luna Jaiswal, a well-known nutritionist in India, to make green leafy vegetables your kid’s next favorite food.
1. Make Green Parathas
Parathas are a delicious and nutritious way to get your kids to eat green leafy vegetables. They are easy to make and can be eaten for breakfast or lunch. Just be sure to only add seasonal greens to your parathas.
To make these green parathas, simply mix finely chopped spinach or fenugreek leaves with whole wheat flour and cook it with some ghee on a tawa.
During the winter season, you can use Ajwain leaves to make delicious parathas for your kids.
2. Share Your Experiences
Sharing real experiences can pique your child’s interest in leafy greens significantly. Let the grandparents or elders share tales of their favourite green veggies and how they were staples in their meals while growing up. Also, talk about how green leafy vegetables helped boost their health and prevent or treat diseases.
3. Turn Veggies Into Heroes
Kids love stories, so why not create some stories about their favourite vegetables? For example, you could tell them a story about a Super Spinach who saved kids one day. Also, take your kids grocery shopping and let them meet these ‘heroes’ in person. Who knows? They might want to bring a few home!
4. Try Gardening
If you have a garden, dedicate a small patch to growing green leafy vegetables. This is a great way to teach your kids about where their food comes from and to get them excited. The joy of watching their greens grow might make them eager to taste their harvest.
5. Use Pudina Chutney as an Accompaniment
Who doesn’t love a good chutney? Grind some pudina (mint) with yoghurt, garlic, and green chilli and pair it with any dish you like. It is an excellent way to sneak some extra green leafy vegetables into your child’s diet.
6. Cook Together
Nothing beats the joy of cooking with your little one. Allow them to wash, chop, and cook greens (under your watchful eyes, of course!) to develop a sense of ownership in them. They might just surprise you by trying out the dish they helped make.
7. Teach Them How To Plate Saag
A traditionally put-together plate is an attractive plate. Teach your kids how to plate green leafy vegetables with dal, curd, pickle, chutney, sabji and roti. It will make the dish visually delightful and enticing.
8. Lead By Example
Don’t always try to hide green leafy vegetables in other forms like chutneys. Teach your kids how to eat saag properly and eat in front of them to create an example. Furthermore, do not forget to praise them whenever they eat their green leafy vegetables properly.
Most parents think palak paneer is a healthy way to incorporate green leafy vegetables. However, contrary to popular belief, palak paneer isn’t the health icon we think it is. It is more for our taste buds than our health. So, make this recipe wisely.
To wrap it up, mamas, the key is persistence, creativity, and a little bit of fun! Although it may seem daunting to get your kids to eat green leafy vegetables, with these tips, soon you might have a kid who says, “Can we have some more greens, please?”
However, if you still struggle to get your kids to eat green leafy vegetables, consult a dietitian in India. They can help create a personalized plan to make sure your child eats all the essential foods, including green leafy vegetables, without being picky.