My baby loves noodles…aww…I make these for him every day. I do so because he relishes them.
Now, doing things repeatedly- becomes a Habit
So eating noodles daily- becomes a Habit
Giving only those things which a child likes makes him to habitual to them; particularly the ones that give his taste buds a decent kick!
This sense of gratification developed by eating a certain food out of habit and socio-cultural conditioning…if deferred from…makes a child fussy with food.
In a simpler way, if a child is not given what he likes- makes him fussy. This behaviour can be startling for parents.
Now the big question is, where did he get this conditioning from- from Home, from Us!
He liked it and we gave it…he liked it more and we gave him more…when we could not…he threw tantrums!
We as parents need to understand that if a child likes something, we have to make him like some more…more and more…instead of narrowing down to liking just one thing (which also narrows the nutrition quotient) broaden the gauze to 1, 2,3,4 and in various categories:
1. Cereals, Pulses, Vegetables, Dry Fruits, Fruits, Sweets, Milk and Milk products, Non Veg. (Food Groups as per Ayurveda)
2. Carbohydrates, Proteins, Fats, Vitamins and Minerals
(Both as per Medical Personality of your child)
I am sharing a wholesome recipe that my two and a half year old is fond of:
1. Porridge (Dalia)-1 bowl
2. Seasonal vegetables viz. onion, carrots, beetroot, peas, potato (finely chopped) – 1 bowl
3. Lentil of your choice (I use all turn wise) – half bowl
4. Clarified Butter (Pure Ghee) – 1 tablespoon
5. Cumin (zeera)-1 teaspoon
6. Salt to taste
7. Water (Porridge: Water= 1:5)
Heat a pressure cooker on medium flame and add ghee
Add cumin and after it crackles up, add the vegetables and lentil
Sauté these for a minute and add salt
Next add porridge
Sauté for another minute
Now add water 5 to 6 times that of porridge
Pressure cook on medium flame for 10 to 15 minutes
Your nutrient rich dish is ready!
Now comes the other part of the Story:
How to tackle fussy eaters?
Ayurveda Healing comes to your rescue!
Follow these steps:
1. Be Creative with not only cooking but also with the presentation part.
Amuse your child with interesting presentations e.g. Relate a story with a food; make his favourite toy eat that food; use jam to make a smiley!
Caution: Nutrition should have an edge over variety. Have a set of 4 to 5 balanced foods (like the recipe I shared). You can make upma, poha, sabudana on similar lines.
Introduce them taking care of your child’s inclinations!
2. Be Disciplined in your approach. Remember, we have to manage our children and not fall a prey to their tantrums. So be the Captain of your Ship and take Command!
If a child gets fussy, don’t bother your hand always! Avoid thrashing your child as it rarely helps.
Better way-out is:
Hold Him/Her Firmly (not tightly)
Make an unwavering eye contact and there you are!
Give a Clear Instruction.
Initial attempts may not be fruitful; be patient.
It really takes a lot of hard work to nurture a child!
This exercise in repetition is always rewarding (Personal Experience)
Such practices will go a long way in shaping your child’s food habits and keeping him healthy.
This way he will enjoy his childhood to the fullest and follow his dreams to achieve higher success in life as they say:
‘Two bananas are more important than a handful of money’
Health always creates wealth and NOT vice-versa!