Monday, September 10, 2007

Getting kids to eat...

What are some reasons or incentives you have heard (or used yourself) to get a child to eat?

I remember my dad telling me there were thousands of children starving in China, so I should eat my food. I still don't understand the connection between cleaning my plate and solving that terrible problem...

I am going to lay low with blog posting in the next few weeks. I think this topic would be a good one to linger on for a while. I'd love to hear your thoughts and questions.


  1. I'd love to have your meatloaf recipe. I love the crockpot idea. I'm going to try and start our dinners in the morning as often as possible to avoid the late-afternoon meltdown we are so fond of around here!

  2. Tami,

    About the meatloaf recipe, I just winged it that day, so if you already have a favorite, it should work. If you don't, I'm sure I can come up with one for you. I also read in that supermarket savings ebook I just bought that the author prepares her meals in the morning and just reheats in the evening. It's a great idea. I also have several 30 minute meals I can share with you.

  3. Renata,

    I think the biggest part of the "clean your plate" attitude comes from the Great Depression era and before. Throughout history, we have seen people struggling to survive. When my father was a child, there was no part of a chicken that they would waste or throw away (with the possible exception of the beak), even the feet! He even ate squirrel brains. We now live in an era of surplus. We don't think twice about loading up that third plate at the buffet and then throwing away 2/3 of it because our eyes are bigger than our stomachs (as my mother still says). We are very much a wasteful society, but that's no excuse to make someone clean their plate. We should be teaching our children to make better decisions about their food choices and portions rather than forcing them to each beyond healthy limits.

    I think a good incentive for children to eat is hunger. I used to say, "I'm starving, but I don't want green beans." My mom would say, "If your starving, you'll eat anything." It takes a lot of patience, but if a parent can persevere through the crying and complaining, allowing a child to suffer through a bit of hunger can be an effective teaching tool.


  4. Gary,

    Hooray! Thanks for boosting my morale by leaving a comment :-)

    Not much I can add to what you said, but I also think people wouldn't waste anything because they most likely produced it themselves. Now we have all these processing plants, we don't have to worry about what has been left out.