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When faced with vegetables, my son has come up with a go-to phrase:

"I'm just not meant to eat vegetables, Mommy."

It's funny, but at the same time, we need to expand his horizons. I've tried several things:
  • Serving vegetables in yummy forms. Zucchini bread and carrot cake are delicious, but they still have lots of sugar in them.
  • Pointing out vegetables that he does eat. Like potatoes (in French fry and pierogi form).
  • Hiding them in other foods. But I'm tired of pureeing carrots.
  • Peer pressure and psychological statements. He's become too smart to fall for "big kids like vegetables" and "don't eat them, that way there will be more for me and Daddy."

Turns out, I'm doing it all wrong. I should say nothing.

Researchers from the University of Chicago and Northwestern University found that children were more likely to eat vegetables when there were no associations made with the food. Basically, children were more likely to eat carrots when they were told nothing about them versus when they were told that carrots would help them grow strong or have great eyesight.

So, serve the vegetables on the plate and say nothing.

This may work well for younger children, but my son has already made food associations and believes that he wasn't meant for vegetables. Still, I have hope that this same method will eventually work out. I'll just put the veggies on the table where he can serve them to himself and then say nothing else about them.

If that doesn't work, I'll be at the food processor, pureeing some spinach if you need me.

What vegetables won't you eat as an adult? Tell me in the comments. (I won't tell your mother.)

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1. Katie Perera

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