Conquering Diet Shift: Relax Parents it’s not that Bad

Image from www2.macleans.ca

Image from www2.macleans.ca

My kids have been exposed to vegetables and ate vegetables when they were in their early years.  I'll mash some squash and they would like it.  Pears would be a treat.  Fast forward to today,  when they keep their mouths shut at the sight of the greens.  What in the world went wrong?

Is it the occasional bite of french fries, the yummy treat of fast food fried chicken or the initial taste of mom's favorite M&M?  I'm perplexed and awash with guilt.

I attended a food talk sponsored by Wyeth's Aqiva Milk and I breathed several sighs of relief.  For one,  I am not alone.  Other moms are in the same predicament.  Their children previously healthy eaters experienced a diet shift.   Diet shift is the stage when kids develop preference for food and unfortunately would prefer the unhealthy ones.  If previously they would just open their mouths and gobble anything mom offers,  now they have an opinion!  OMG,  an opinionated 2 year old!

Secondly,  it is not mom and mom alone to blame for this shift.  According to Dr. Bernadette Benitez,  a Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics Specialist, diet shift is a developmental phase, meaning it is physiological and not purely behavioral.   During the first 2 years of the life of a child,  children experience growth spurts where they double or triple their birth weight in those 2 years.  Growth trickles down as they enter the toddler years thus decreasing their need for food.   Brace yourself,  diet shift heightens at age 4-7.  Not to be discounted is the shift in their behavioral phase.  They know a little bit, they have an opinion and they don't just solely live to eat and sleep:-)

Knowing that gave me a good basis for a mind shift towards more pleasurable and fun meals.  Instead of turning into Momzilla during meal times,  I would just have to cope and tide it over by doing the following:

  • Be a good model in eating.  My husband and I,  always have to have meat and veggies on our table.  Monkey see, monkey do, hopefully.
  • Offer the veggie but don't force and fight over it.  Meal times are supposed to be fun and pleasant without threats and bribes. I'm sooo guilty of this.  Mikee Cojuangco,  celebrity mom,  just ask her kids to take a bite of a new food.  Just one.  If they like it they can continue eating it.  If they don't want it,  it's ok,  at least they tried.
  • Another thing is our aura when we offer healthy food.  My kids can read my face in a heartbeat as they tease me "Ep, ep, ep what do you want me to try?"  True,  I anticipate failure even before the battle.  In fact,  the word battle spells negative already.  Just give healthy food,  without the fanfare and temper that saccharine smile:-)
  • Take an extra effort to prepare healthy food that are appealing to the eye.  They say,  the first thing that eats are the eyes and we better try to woo them with that.  The elements for good food preparation according to Celebrity Chef Jackie Laudico are color, textures and shapes.

nicely prepared food

  • Lastly,  since the diet shift is real and inevitable,  we have to give our kids supplements to compensate for the lack of nutrients in their current diet and attain balance in nutrition.  Kids are growing and the diet shift occurs at the crucial age of their development.  They need those vitamins and minerals found in vegetables and fruits and if we can't get them to munch on those,  then comes the supplements.

Aqiva,  developed by trusted milk manufacturer Wyeth,  is formulated to address the at-risk nutrients.  At-risk nutrients  are nutrients that may be deficient in your kids because of the diet shift.  AQI in Aqiva stands for Adequate, Quality and Important Nutrients.  It is packed with 40 ingredients including 25 essential nutrients, scientifically designed to support the child’s nutrition as parents teach them healthy eating habits, especially during the Diet Shift phase.

What I appreciate in AQIVA is the fact that it doesn't offer the milk as an alternative but rather as a  partner to help us cope with the diet shift.  Apart from offering the milk,  they are embarking on an effort to create awareness and spread information on teaching mothers how to help their child learn healthy eating habits, to cope with the Diet Shift.  My kids and I love the taste too!  It's vanilla!  Sorry, did I sound like a commercial?  But just please give it a try - try it cold:-)

Image from www.marriageandbeyond.com

Image from www.marriageandbeyond.com

From personal experience,  I think they will come around.  If we come to think of it,  as Nutrition Expert Ms. Luchie Callanta,  aptly observed,  "Which one are we among our kids?"

I'm not an avid vegetable fan myself when I was a kid.  I think the only greens I ate were kangkong and potatoes.  Yes,  I used to think potatoes were veggies (Potatoes are botanically vegetables but nutritionally they are carbs).  But when I hit college,  I developed a liking for it.  Now that doesn't mean we become permissive in watching our kids' eating habits.   In the end, we should remain steadfast in making meal times fun, enjoyable and healthy for our kids.  Give them Aqiva.  And trust that everything will turn out well.  It usually does:-)

For more healthy eating tips for our little ones,  please log on to Aqiva's FB Page.  Thanks!

Disclosure:  This is a post written by TheGoMom and sponsored by Aqiva.  The sponsorship does not diminish the integrity of this blog.

(L-R) Host Delamar with brand manager of Aqiva, Chef Jackie Laudico, Celebrity Mom Mikee Cojuangco, Nutrition Expert Luchie Callanta and Pediatrics Specialist Dr. Bernadette Benitez at the recently held Aqiva Food Talk

(L-R) Host Delamar with brand manager of Aqiva, Chef Jackie Laudico, Celebrity Mom Mikee Cojuangco, Nutrition Expert Luchie Callanta and Pediatrics Specialist Dr. Bernadette Benitez at the recently held Aqiva Food Talk

 

 

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