Feeding my family healthy food...definitely is one of my biggest challenges as a mom of 3 little ones (1 year old, 3 years old and 6 years old) and as a Registered Dietitian.
one of those picky eaters yourself.
There is really nothing that prepares you for all the eating issues that arise with kids. It starts as babies- maybe your baby won't eat a certain texture; then to toddlers and they won't sit down to eat a meal and then school aged kids and they become picky eaters and won't eat anything! Or maybe it's a combination of all these!
Even as a dietitian I still struggle with getting my kids to healthy foods all the time. Its often a struggle just to find the time to make the healthy food. Sometimes we need to have quick and easy meals and this is ok!!! You would be spending your whole day in the kitchen if everything was made from scratch daily! It's 0K not to be perfect! You can only do so much in a day. Be kind to yourself.
One of my biggest successes with dealing with my own picky eaters is repetition! It can take up to 20 attempts for a new food to be accepted by your child. So often as parents we give up after one or two attempts and just decide that our kids don't like that food.
Another big one is role modeling. Kids learn best through watching their parents eat. If you want them to eat more fruit and vegetables, then you need to eat more fruit and vegetables!
Another strategy is to provide new foods with familiar and already accepted foods and again repeating this process over and over again. With doing this, make sure they are good and hungry!! One strategy that many parents do is to disguise food. This should actually be avoided. Children need to know what foods they are eating. You may lose their trust if you try tricking them.
On the day you go grocery shopping, plan out your meals out for the week. If you feel that planning for the entire week is too overwhelming at first, start with your busiest days. These days are the most important to plan. If you don't plan meals on these days, you are more likely to eat out. After the meal planning is done then make a grocery list with all the ingredients for all the meals. Check your fridge and pantry for any of the ingredients before you go grocery shopping!There are now options at grocery stores that you can order your groceries online. This definitely helps you stick to your grocery list and budget and reduces impulse buying.