About Careers Internship MedBlog Contact us
Try Out Variety: Smart Way to Get Your Kids to Eat Veggies

Try Out Variety: Smart Way to Get Your Kids to Eat Veggies

  • Variety could be the key to teaching kids to eat more vegetables
  • Including a wide range of colorful veggies to your little fussy eater’s diet can ideally increase their acceptance and preferences for vegetables
  • Serve multiple vegetables to make your child crave for veggies

Adding a variety of vegetables to your child's diet can make them eat more veggies. So hurry up, it's time to vary your veggies.

Although food preferences are largely learned, dislike is the main reason parents stop offering or serving their children foods like vegetables. A new study in the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior, published by Elsevier, demonstrated that repeatedly offering a variety of vegetables increased acceptance and consumption by children.

Listen to this article

"In Australia, dietary guidelines for vegetable consumption by young children have increased although actual consumption is low," said lead author Astrid A.M. Poelman, PhD, CSIRO Agriculture & Food, Sensory, Flavour and Consumer Science, North Ryde, Australia.

"This study introduces an effective strategy for parents wanting to address this deficiency."

Details of the Study

The study recruited 32 families with children between the ages of four and six where low consumption of vegetables was reported. Parents completed an online survey and attended an information meeting prior to participating. Three groups were created: children introduced to a single vegetable; children to receive multiple vegetables; and a group where eating habits were not changed.

Study data were collected in several ways: two dinner meals served at the research facility during which children could eat as much of the broccoli, cauliflower and green beans as they wished; changes to actual vegetables consumed at home, childcare or school recorded through food diaries; and parents reporting on usual vegetable consumption.

Strategies of offering vegetables were parent led and home based. Families introducing one vegetable served broccoli and families trying multiple vegetables served broccoli, zucchini and peas. Parents were provided with a voucher to purchase the vegetables and given instructions on portion size and cooking instructions along with tips on how to offer the vegetables. Children were served a small piece of vegetable three times a week for five weeks. A sticker was given as a reward to children trying a vegetable.

Findings of the Study

There was no difference between groups at the start of the study for any of the methods measured. The dinner meal, during which the children ate without parents present, did not increase consumption perhaps due to an unfamiliar setting.

Vegetable acceptance increased for both the single and multiple vegetable groups during the intervention. Families that offered multiple vegetables recorded an increase in consumption from .6 to 1.2 servings, while no change in consumption was observed in families serving a single vegetable or families that did not change their eating habits.

Increased acceptance for multiple vegetables was noted during the five weeks of the study and sustained at three-month followup. Following the study parents reported that offering the vegetables was 'very easy' or 'quite easy' with the majority following the instructions provided by the study.

Key Note of the Study

Dr. Poelman recommended, "While the amount of vegetables eaten increased during the study, the amount did not meet dietary guidelines. Nonetheless, the study showed the strategy of offering a variety of vegetables was more successful in increasing consumption than offering a single vegetable."

Reference :
  1. Multiple vs Single Target Vegetable Exposure to Increase Young Children's Vegetable Intake - (https://www.jneb.org/article/S1499-4046(19)30896-6/fulltext)

Source: Eurekalert
Font : A-A+

Cite this Article   close



Recommended Readings

Latest Health Watch

 Cold Shower: Top 5 Refreshing Benefits
From ancient Spartan warriors to modern-day wellness fanatics, the cold shower is gaining (or should we say losing) steam.
 Disease X: The Unknown Epidemic on the Horizon
Discover the mystery behind Disease X, the term coined by WHO. Learn about its potential impact, its likely zoonotic origins, and the steps being taken to combat this unseen foe.
 Secrets to Soothing Shoulder Stiffness and Stress
Unlock the secrets to easing shoulder tension caused by stress, poor posture, and overuse. Dive into expert tips for relief and posture improvement.
Could Blue Light from Screens Be Triggering Early Puberty?
New research reveals that blue light from screens may trigger early puberty in male rats, highlighting potential risks for children's development.
Continuous Wrist Temperature Monitoring Reveals Disease Risks
Researchers found 73 medical conditions linked to irregular temperature rhythms in a study analyzing data from over 92,000 participants.
View All
This site uses cookies to deliver our services.By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use  Ok, Got it. Close
Greetings! How can I assist you?MediBot

Try Out Variety: Smart Way to Get Your Kids to Eat Veggies Personalised Printable Document (PDF)

Please complete this form and we'll send you a personalised information that is requested

You may use this for your own reference or forward it to your friends.

Please use the information prudently. If you are not a medical doctor please remember to consult your healthcare provider as this information is not a substitute for professional advice.

Name *

Email Address *

Country *

Areas of Interests