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How to Feed Your Children Fruit & Vegetables…

Posted Apr 23 2010 12:00am

I remember sitting in the basement of a small Anglican church about 6 or 7 months ago.  We were at a Music Together class with our girls, and one of the songs that we were singing had something to do with food, so the instructor was asking each child which was their favorite food.  Most of the kids were too shy to answer, so their mom would reply by saying things like, cookies, crackers, gummy bears, and other similar edible food like substances.  Eventually, she landed on the little girl next to us and she happily responded by saying that she loved blueberries.

The reaction of the mothers in the room was immediate, and they all looked in the direction of the mother of the blueberry loving child, and said in concert, “well aren’t we healthy”.  I was amazed.  Rather than congratulating the mother and the little girl for enjoying something that is actually real food, and quite beneficial in terms of health, they mocked the kid and her mom because they were so embarrassed by the choices that their children were making.  Decisions, which can only be made if such foods are available in the home.

The facilitator didn’t stop with Jen and I because the girls had not yet learned to speak (they were only 7 or 8 months old at the time), however I was hoping she would because at that time the girls were in love with avocado, blueberries and cheese.  Imagine the looks we would have received after telling the group that our girls loved avocado!

Fast forward to 14 months old and the girls have their preferences for sure, and avocado remains one, along with blueberries, cheese, banana, milk, and green beans to name a few.  In our attempts to feed the girls foods that support their development, we have had our ups and downs, however one of the best things that happened to us (as far as the nutrition quest is concerned) was the day that I decided to feed them some of my smoothie.

They loved the sweet taste and continued to ask for more until there was none left for me, unless I were to lick it off their faces!  From that day on, smoothies have become part of the weekly ritual, and over time we have learned that it doesn’t matter what we put into the VitaMix because they gobble every last drop.

Initially I began by making my regular smoothie, and then making another basic smoothie for them so we could watch for signs of allergy.  Over the next couple of months we graduated to making one big smoothie in the morning that gets divided into 2 cups for the girls, 1 for mom and dad at breakfast and another for dad to take to work.

Here is my most recent smoothie for the girls…

I don’t measure ingredients, and nothing is wasted.  Here is what went into today’s smoothie…

Whole milk, whole fat yogurt (low sugar), coconut milk, 1 egg, about 1/2 teaspoon of maple syrup, 1 apple, 1/2 avocado, 1/2 carrot (raw), 1 small cucumber, chia seeds, flax seeds, sea weed flakes, cinnamon, almonds, walnuts, spinach, baby romaine leaves, frozen banana,  and frozen strawberries.

Simply pour into the cups…

If I were to place all of those ingredients on the table, the girls would most likely toss them onto the floor because of taste or texture, however when mixed into a smoothie that they can suck through a straw, this is the result…

I will try to get this on video some day because their reaction to smoothie time is quite funny.  They know that the smoothie is coming, so they walk over to the kitchen and wait “patiently” for the good stuff to be poured into the cups with a special excited laugh that they have for their favorite foods such as the smoothie, blueberries, banana, and avocados.

What have you been doing for your children’s smoothies?  I would love to hear about them in the comments.  If you have any questions about making smoothies, please feel free to contact me.

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