not to take it personally when my grandkids donít like what
I cook. Vegetables? Letís just say ó thanks to concerted
efforts on the part of mom, grandmaís and their excellent
preschool staff ó these little ones are expanding their
"I donít like that, Grammy."
"Oh good, because this food is only for grownups. When
you get older, youíll really like it."
"I want to try it!"
"Iím not sure Ö but Ö OK."
"I like it!"
makes some kids pickier eaters than others? One reason may be
differences in personality, according to a new study in the
Journal of Child Psychology. Researchers observed how 136
infants responded to new foods and new toys during their first
18 months of life. They discovered that infants who were
reserved about new toys also tended to be less accepting of
new foods. That suggests a link between personality and
attitudes about food, say the authors.
give up just because your child is less than enthusiastic
about downing his zucchini. Other research consistently shows
that infants and children can learn to accept new foods if
their caregivers continue to offer them. It may take as many
as eight to 10 offerings before a child learns to accept
never too late to start. Flavors from what a mom eats during
pregnancy and lactation get passed on to her baby, says Julie
Mennella, a biopsychologist at the Monell Chemical Senses
Center in Philadelphia. So if a mother eats vegetables during
these early years, her infant is familiar with the taste of
those foods when they are introduced.
clinical trial conducted by Mennella and her research team
found that breastfed infants whose moms drank carrot and other
types of vegetable juices were more likely to accept the
flavors of these vegetables when they began to eat solid
foods. Another bonus: Moms also developed a taste for
vegetables during the time they drank the vegetable juices.
of what tricks we pull to get our kiddos to eat healthier, we
should not force food on a child.
young children are more-or-less picky about food," says
child feeding expert Ellyn Satter. "They warm up slowly
to unfamiliar foods and may have to see, watch you eat, touch
or taste a food several times before they learn to like
a positive attitude about food and your child is apt to catch
that outlook. Even if you have to sometimes use reverse