HOW I GOT MY BABIES TO EAT WHOLE FOODS
Let's not fool ourselves. My kids eat mac and cheese sometimes. And nilla wafers. And yesterday I caught one of the twins in the pantry with 3 marshmallows in his mouth. Yep. That's life. But my intentions have always been this. If I start with the basics, feeding my babies what I eat, perhaps they will have healthy habits. Or at least healthy intentions.
Here's the thing, according to the Centers for disease control and prevention, "The percentage of children with obesity in the United States has more than tripled since the 1970s. Today, about one in five school-aged children (ages 6–19) has obesity." This is powerful knowledge. And it's astounding. And from my experience, (being raised on spam and rice amongst other non vegetable things), I discovered healthier living some time in my early twenties and that knowledge became the foundation for how to get my babies to eat whole foods. And here's how I did it.
From day 1 that my babies could eat solid foods, I made them the foods I ate. I started with mushy sweet potatoes (baking them at 350 for an hour and half). I cut up avocados and put it on their tray. I cut blueberries in quarters (yes I know, I was paranoid of choking) and I ate the blueberries with them. I chopped up strawberries, blackberries, boiled broccoli and carrots, green beans, asparagus, apples, you name it. I gave it. And I never stopped.
Even in this "non-eating berries" period my twins are in currently, I'm making do. I am changing it up. They decided they don't like blueberries, so I made them a shake. I put blueberries, spinach, apples, avocado, banana, ice and almond milk in my vitamix and blended it right up. They drank it. They think it's koo-laid and I'm 100% thrilled with it. P.S. the Vitamix is my favorite Christmas gift in the history of ever.
And that's how I got them to eat whole foods. Also, putting it on their plate daily, regardless if they eat it all, is paramount. Like, last month I cut up watermelon, because summer. Luke was curious, so he tried it. And....he's obsessed. Bo, not so much. But every day since, I put it on their tray. And yesterday, Bo ate it. Wallah! Also, please note, everyone has a different situation and not everyone can do vegetables and fruit every day and not everyone is home with their kids feeding them from farm, to table. And that's ok. Obviously. I think it begins with effort and ends with your children having a liking towards whole foods. If they begin with the basics, and those basics are healthy options that are affordable and work for you and your family, they'll always lean towards the basics. And this doesn't mean they won't love poptarts. They will love poptarts if they try them. And that's ok. They won't die if they love poptarts. I love poptarts. But if the foundation is built around whole foods, then they will put whole foods in their mouth even if they'd rather have poptarts. Because they can. Because they have done it since birth. And those healthy habits can keep them from the tragic numbers of unhealthy habits and obesity in this country. And that effort coming from the home, from you, is better than nothin'.