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How To Bribe Your Kids Into Eating Their Veggies

Wanpark2, flickr

Did your kids fill up on candy canes, chocolates, pies, and all other kinds of holiday treats between Thanksgiving and Christmas? Are you determined to get them back on track (along with yourself!) for the new year? Researchers say there’s a new way to fight the good fight in getting your children to eat their veggies or other healthy foods.

A new study shows that giving your child a small reward for taking even a taste works wonders. (Of course, you don’t want the reward to be junk food, though, or you’d be defeating the purpose.)  The scientists in the study had parents give their three- and four-year-olds a sticker each time they took a ‘tiny taste’ of a disliked vegetable, and it gradually changed their attitude toward trying new or healthy foods. Unfortunately, though, you DO need to reward with something appropriate for their age (in my case that would be MONEY, lol!) because the research found that simply rewarding with verbal praise was not effective. 

As for my boys, what I’ve found works best is simply not letting them leave the kitchen table until they’ve taken at least a bite of the ‘dreaded’ food. If they want to get up, they have to eat at least a forkful. They don’t even question it anymore. And yes, occasionally they have discovered that they actually LIKE the broccoli…..or green beans!

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