Healthy Kids

Five Steps to Make Sure Your Kids Eat More Fruits and Vegetables

INGREDIENTS :

Crust :
2¼ cups Nilla wafer crumbs
10 T. melted butter
3 T. sugar

Cheesecake :
24 ounces soft cream cheese
1 cup of sugar
3 T. flour
¼ cup sour cream
1 cup pureed bananas (I used a food processor)
3 eggs

Bavarian Cream :
1 tsp powdered gelatin
2 T. whole milk
2 egg yolks
½ cup heavy cream
2 T. sugar
¾ tsp vanilla
⅔ cup heavy cream
5 T. powdered sugar

Whipped Cream for Piping :
½ cup heavy cream
¼ cup powdered sugar
½ tsp vanilla extract
Fresh bananas, sliced for garnish

INSTRUCTIONS :

Step 1: Prepare the oven and preheat to 325 degrees F.

Step 2: Line with parchment paper a 9-inch springform pan. Apply cooking spray on the sides.

To Make the Crust:

Step 1: In a medium mixing bowl, add in all the crust ingredients. Stir until well mixed.

Step 2: Transfer the mixture into the pan and press on the bottom and the sides.

Step 3: Place inside the preheated oven and bake for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow it to cool.

Step 4: Ready the moat pan and reduce the heat of the oven to 300 degrees F.

To Make the Cheesecake:

Step 1: Place the sugar, flour, and cream cheese in a mixer. Beat on low speed until well mixed.

Step 2: Add in sour cream, banana puree, and one egg at a time. Beat until well combined and smooth.

Step 3: Transfer the mixture into the crust.

Step 4: Place inside the preheated oven and bake for 90 minutes.

Step 5: Turn off the oven and let it sit inside the oven for 30 minutes.

Step 6: Remove the cheesecake and let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes. Then place inside the fridge to chill.

To Make the Bavarian cream:

Step 1: In a small mixing bowl, add in the milk and gelatin. Stir until well mixed.

Step 2: In another mixing bowl, add the yolk and whisk until foamy.

Step 3: Place a saucepan on the stove and turn the heat to low. Add in the sugar, vanilla, and cream.

Step 4: Gently pour in the hot cream into the egg mixture. Put the mixture back to the saucepan and heat until it reaches 160 degrees.

Step 5: Transfer the gelatin mix into the saucepan and stir until well mixed.

Step 6: Transfer the custard into a small mixing bowl and let it sit on a large mixing bowl with ice. Allow it to cool.

Step 7: Whisk sugar and cream until stiff peaks form then add into the cooled custard.

Step 8: Spread the mixture on top of the cheesecake. Place inside the fridge and chill for hours.

To Make the Cream:

Step 1: In a small mixing bowl, add in the sugar, vanilla, and cream. Beat until well mixed.

Step 2: Spread on top of the sliced bananas and cake.

Step 3: Sprinkle the rest of the Nilla Wafer Crumbs.

Step 4: Serve and enjoy!

Getting your children to eat their fruits and vegetables can be a mind-boggling chore. Whether you’re trying to expand their palette, get some more vitamins and minerals into those little bodies, or introduce them to probiotics for babies, sometimes your children just don’t want to do what’s good for them.

It can be hard to get your children to eat healthy, but hopefully this list will make the process easier.

Here’s our list of five steps to make sure your kids eat more fruits and vegetables.

1. Work with Their Taste Buds

If you have a picky eater in your family, you know that coaxing rarely works and forcing can lead to staunch rebellion. Instead, try to tailor your meals to find some common ground with your child’s taste buds, while still sneaking in those servings of fruits and vegetables.

If they like cheese, put cheese on their broccoli. If they want juice, try making a fresh fruit smoothie to replace it.

Instead of making a sudden change in your child’s meals, gradually switch their unhealthy staples for healthy substitutes. Slowly reduce the amount of sugar, salt, cheese or condiments added to their food.

Studies in taste show that, over the course of a few weeks, your sense of taste can change, adjusting to increases or decreases in the types of food you consume. This means that, over time, you crave less salt and sugar the less of it that you eat on a daily basis.

2. Be Creative with Recipes

Making food fun is one of the easiest ways to get your kids eating healthier. You can take advantage of children’s natural inclination to play and put it to good use.

By designing meals to be bright and colorful, you’ll naturally end up including a lot more fruits and vegetables. From bright bell peppers to colorful berries, deep leafy greens and earthy root vegetables, you’ll be able to fit all the colors of the rainbow into healthy options throughout your child’s day.

Try experimenting with playful recipes as well, making recognizable shapes like plants, animals and cartoon characters. See what they think of a toadstool salad, an egg and bell pepper flower or lentils and mashed potatoes Tigger.

You can also take this opportunity to include some probiotics in your meals. Probiotics for babies will help them to better absorb those vitamins and minerals, improve their digestion, and strengthen their immune system.

3. Get Your Kids Involved

Getting your kids involved in the activities of food preparation will not only make them more interested in what they eat, but it will also strengthen their child development. There are a lot of ways to get them in on the action.
Whether it’s helping you garden, shop or cook, these activities expose your child to a variety of basic daily life experiences. They also give your child different opportunities to develop their problem-solving and communication skills, help them explore their environments, and boost their confidence.

The more energy they put into making their meals, the more likely they are to want to taste those efforts. Working as a team to feed the family will also make them feel more like an equal participant, making them more cooperative and less obstinate at the dinner table.

4. Set a Good Example

The old adage “lead by example” comes in handy when you’re trying to get your kids to consume more produce. The number one role model they look up to is you, their parent.

You can set a good example in a lot of small but effective ways. Put a big helping of fruits and vegetables on your own plate at meal times, snack on healthy items like apples, nuts or carrots, and avoid the junk food aisles when you go grocery shopping.

A National Institute of Health analysis of parental influence on children’s eating habits finds that kids most readily accept the foods that are in their environment and the foods that the adults around them eat. The most effective way to influence your children’s food behavior is to eat healthy yourself.

So, do your best to keep junk food out of the house, add a helping of fruits or vegetables to every meal, and only provide healthy options as snacks. Practice what you preach, and your children will naturally follow your example.

5. Eat as a Family

In modern living, we’ve started to lose the tradition of eating meals together as a family. But studies show that eating family dinners is associated with consuming more fruits and vegetables, less fried food and soda, and a lower glycemic index.

While the exact cause of this association is not stated explicitly, it’s likely that this is a result of home-cooked meals generally being healthier than fast food or restaurant options. Added to that, eating together is the best opportunity for parents to model healthy eating choices.

Eating as a family also comes with a lot of positive influence on child development. Studies find that family talk boosts vocabulary, improves your child’s academic performance, reduces stress and strengthens the family’s social bonds.

Even if your family’s schedules are busy and irregular, try to get everyone together for a meal a few times a week.
A Little Forethought Goes a Long Way

By following these five steps to make sure your kids eat more fruits and vegetables, you’ll be able to improve not only their physical health but also their mental and social well-being. All it takes is a little extra thought and preparation. Just ask yourself these three simple questions each time you sit down to plan a meal:
How can I make this meal healthy, fun and tasty?

What food-prep activity can I have my kids help with?

How can I set a healthy example?

Answer these easy questions, and you’ll quickly have your picky eaters eating healthier than you ever thought possible.

Your turn! What ways have you found to be helpful in getting your children to eat more fruits and veggies?

About the author: Hannah Tong is the founder of Omaby.com, a blog dedicated to providing accurate advice to mothers regarding childcare. She loves taking care of her kids and teaching them the right things. She is also enthusiastic and loves sharing her experiences to teach others about how to care for their families’ health.

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