Healthy Eating
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11 year old

Hi I have an 11 year old boy who will only eat and try sweet corn, cucumber, strawberries, raspberries and drink apple juice. He will eat other foods like meat, pasta, rice etc. It I am left cycling round the 4 real fruit and veg each day that he will eat. He is very strong willed and outright refuses to try and other type of veg. Has anyone got any tips or experienced this with their kids ? I am trying to move to a vegetarian diet but he’s having none of it .

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You could try a combination of subterfuge and lying? I make my two girls (8 and 10) dinners with ' mince' in them, ( bolognese, shepherds pie, pasties, curry etc.).

The mince in question is actually onion, celery, carrot, mushrooms, cauliflower, peppers and walnuts, made into mince- sized pieces in a food processor I put tomato purée and passata in the 'bolognese' to dye it the right colour and beef stock in the other things.

You can also sneak it into meatballs with half actual meat.

In my experience, it accustoms them to the taste and texture of vegetables and they become more palatable as their bodies start to want the nutrients in them.

It's up to you whether you confess or not. I did after the fourth or fifth time 'cause I couldn't stand the lies! Haha.

This may or may not work, my suggestion comes with no garuantees, though I achieved approx. 80% success and my girls are totally wise to my tricks now. It's made them far more accommodating to veg though in a 'if you liked that, you might like this' kind of way.

Good luck.

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Thanks that’s a really good idea I will give it a try

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Hi Kay_Lee,

I don't have any experience of trying to get children to eat food, but, I am going to give you a link to the 5-a-day NHS Choices information, as it's tips for getting 'anyone' to eat more veggies etc, and I don't see why you can't adapt some of the tips for your 11 year old. Anyway, I hope it is helpful in some way:

nhs.uk/Livewell/5ADAY/Pages...

Zest :-)

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Thanks Zest I will have a read

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Pureed soup works. Raw fruit and veg into tasty dips. Some chopped veg in pies and casseroles.

Since your child is only eating a limited number of fruits and no vegetables his diet is lacking so if you are concerned perhaps your GP could help. Or approach the school. Often growing, preparing and eating vegetables can break these habits.

All these fruits are very sweet. Does he have a lot of other sweet things in his diet that is giving him an overly sweet tooth. Cutting back a lot on biscuits cake, sweets etc will re-educate his palate to enjoy different tastes maybe.

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Thanks I hadn’t noticed that but yes it’s the sweeter fruits he likes and yes he does. I am going to toughen up and reduce the sugar , thanks for your advice

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