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Health Happy Round-Up: Prevent Picky Eating

health happy round-upWelcome to a weekly series on Traveling with Baby, Health Happy Round-Up which focuses on multiple aspects of wholesome living and optimal health for the entire family.  Each weekend, Traveling with Baby will share some insightful news, recipes, and tips to help you consider fresh new perspectives on wholesome and happy health.

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Do you struggle to get your kids to eat their vegetables?  Are they having food strikes unless it’s a favorite cookie or mac ‘n cheese?

Mealtime doesn’t need to be battle time.  Here’s a few tips (with perseverance and patience) that will help your children eat their veggies and love it.

1. If you’re a picky eater, your kids will follow suit.

Nit and pick and your little one will copy you.  They’re watching every move you make.  However, if you regularly eat a wide variety of healthy foods such as fresh fruit, colorful vegetables, your kids will gobble up good food just because they know Mom and Dad get excited about it.

2. Eat meals at regularly scheduled times.

Kids (and adults) need a schedule for sleep and metabolism.  If meals are served at haphazard times on a daily basis, hunger and the body’s ability to efficiently process nutrition gets haywire.  Set regular mealtimes for breakfast and dinner (as a minimum), and soon you’ll discover your kids are regularly hungry around regularly scheduled mealtimes.

Regular mealtimes brings me to…

3. Don’t serve snacks 30 minutes before mealtimes. For some families, that window of time may need to be even greater.  The more physically and mentally active a child is, the greater his need for food to sustain his metabolism.  Some children need regular snacks between meals.  Make those snacks spaced well before meals, and make them count with good nutrition and energy sources: fruit, yogurt, low-acid cheese, or veggie sticks.  Skip the crackers and goldfish–tasty but just empty fillers that create insulin spikes and potential temper-tantrums.

4. Introduce your children to healthy foods in a fun way. Eat a wide variety of healthy foods on a regular basis.  Allow your children to help you prepare meals in the kitchen.  Even toddlers can help arrange veggie sticks on a tray or stir a yogurt sauce.  They can definitely help by tasting yummy foods while you prepare in the kitchen.  Name the foods, and allow them to see the colors and textures of produce from around the world.

The perfect setting for a lovely meal is music that enhances the appetite and sets a fun-filled mood.

Putumayo Kids produces yet another must-have collection of world music hits that is enjoyed by the entire family.  I’ve been thrilled with every release since we first started listening to Hawaiian Playground.  Putumayo Kids continues to unite exceptional artists from across the globe for a smorgasbord of yummy music in their July 28th release of Picnic Playground.picnic playgroundMy son loves to dance along to all of his Putumayo Playground CD’s, but I’ve never seen him quite so amused with an album as he is with Picnic Playground from the moment I first push PLAY.

Jumping.  Dancing.  Twirling.  Conducting.  Somersaulting.  Heaps of fun!

Folks, my son is singing along in French and English, and he’s only 20 months-old.  Song descriptions in the enclosed booklet are printed in English, French, and Spanish.

We love to play this album at dinnertime.  It’s perfect as background music for birthday parties, picnics, and cookouts on the patio.  This is the first album I’ve ever owned that features healthy and nutritional recipes for kids.

Dr. Dolly’s fave tracks:

  • #1 – Eat Like a Rainbow by Jay Mankita
  • #3  – Bolitas de Arroz con Pollo by Jose Conde y Ola Fresca

Calvin’s fave tracks (It was hard to narrow it down to just two):

  • #2 – Mes Parents Sont Bio by Pascal Parisot
  • #4 – Ice Cream by Asheba

Fret your palate with a delicious sampler.  Putumayo Kids’ Picnic Playground is available for purchase, beginning July 28th through Putumayo Kids website, or Amazon.com for $14.98.  Visit the Putumayo Kids site for more family fun.

If you happen to live in Massachusettes, New York, Washington, Oregon, or California, you could catch a live performance by artists from Picnic Playground.  Find out concert tour dates and locations at the new Putumayo blog!

Making the world a better place through music

To combat hunger and malnourishment, Putumayo Kids will donate 1% of proceeds from the sale of Picnic Playground CDs to Vitamin Angels, providing essential nutrients ot children in the U.S. and around the world.

WIN IT!

prizeypickTwo of you could win your own copy of Putumayo Kids Picnic Playground CD (retail value $14.98).

(Primary entry method, this must be completed first!) Leave a comment describing your favorite family picnic experience or memory.

EXTRA CREDIT

  • Earn two additional entries by blogging about the giveaway and linking to Traveling with Baby using “Putumayo Kids Picnic Playground” as the title in your blog’s post.  Then, leave two comments here with a link to your post.
  • Earn two additional entries by subscribing to Traveling with Baby’s RSS feed.  Leave (two) comments stating that you’re subscribed.
  • Earn another entry by following me (drdolly) and putumayokids on Twitter and tweeting this contest with the following RT @drdolly @putumayokids Win Putumayo Kids Picnic Playground CD on Traveling with Baby! http://tinyurl.com/ltvo4cLeave a comment with the weblink to your tweet.
  • Earn another entry by adding Traveling with Baby’s button to your website/blog.

Leave a valid e-mail address, so I can contact you to claim your prize, or it’ll go to another amazing person.  The contest is open to U.S. shipping addresses only.

This contest runs until 11:59PM (EST) on August 7th, 2009.

Two winners will be randomly selected (via random.org) and announced on this post and e-mailed sometime shortly after August 7th. If a winner doesn’t respond within 72 hours, a new winner will be selected.

Congratulations to the winners!  #15 Xenia and #6 Kim!

–By Dr. Dolly
Subscribe // Twitter me: drdolly
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25 Responses

  1. by far my favorite family picnic memories are when it’s warm out side and we pick up something quick and sit outside and enjoy fridays after five downtown! it’s a great place for kids and the music is wonderful 😉

    • Carlita, we’ve taken Calvin twice. He LOVES to dance to the music and people watch. We should go more frequently, but we usually end up camping on Friday nights!

  2. my fave memory is when our son was teeny tiny & we’d put him in the infant swing and it would SWALLOW him whole!

  3. subscriber #1

  4. My favorite picnic memory is when my school would have an all school picnic at the end of the year! Would love this CD – my son is really into music right now.

  5. following on twitter and retweeted!

  6. subscriber #2

  7. Just a note that we’ve posted about this giveaway on Winning Readings:

    http://winningreadings.blogspot.com/2009/07/picnic-playground-cd.html

  8. My favorite family picnic was when my husband surprised me and took me and our son to the Botanic Gardens. We had a great day looking at all the beautiful flowers and running around!

    jamie5315@hotmail.com

  9. My favorite picnic experiences involve those with my whole family together, nothing special going on, just being together.
    nhmummab@comcast.net

  10. We love to picnic with our toddler and our dog in the park across the street.

  11. I follow both, and here’s my tweet: http://twitter.com/prizealert/status/2898254289

  12. Do indoor picnics count? I don’t really remember any picnics from my childhood, and I haven’t gone on any recently. But for our second Valentine’s Day together, my husband and I got take out from a special restaurant we had one of our first dates at, and ate on the floor in front of the fire place.

    Thank you for the giveaway!

  13. My favorite picnic memory is eating on someone’s porch out in the middle of nowhere in Honduras with my husband. Thanks!

  14. Cool music is always welcome!! We just had a going away party for some friends of ours who are moving away. it was such fun! we barbecued, the kids played, the adults hung out and laughed, and we just enjoyed this last big party together. Such fun memories!!

  15. My favorite picnic memory from when I was a kid was when we went to a fair/carnival that wasn’t too far from my house and brought our picnic lunch with us. It was loud and crazy there but my family found a nice spot to eat and people-watch. Amidst it all, my dad was sound asleep under a tree. I’ll always remember that time!

  16. Once my family took a picnic to Norris Dam near Knoxville. We spent the day watching and feeding squirrels and deer, which was really cool, and watching other people run in terror as a couple of skunks made their way around the park looking for scraps near garbage cans. Too funny!

  17. My favorite memory is watching my daughter walk across the stage to get her law degree. Thanks for the wonderful giveaway

  18. I remember eating dinner on our big square patio table during the summer. It such a peaceful memory!

    Caroline
    SmartyPantsMama

  19. Thanks Dr. Holly for your suggestions. These are good tips not only for kids, but for adults as well, who are interested in losing weight.

  20. my fav picnic memory is when me and my family would go to a fruit farm and pick fresh fruit and vegs, the do a bbq with the frsh sweetcorns and vegs, and play games, it was great and sometrhing oi would love to follow up with my bgrowing family.

  21. I figure picnics are an excellent way to wean kids out of picky eating habits. Sometimes I like to mix it up by placing all sorts of veggies together with my hot dogs and sandwiches!

  22. Great article. I’m struggling a bit with weaning at the moment – sometimes my 8 month old gobble up his food and other times he couldn’t be less interested. I plan to be a bit more structured with meal times and also find that offering a great variety helps.

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