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Nutrition for the Busy Family

Vegetables and fruit can be a filling and nutritious way to add volume to a family's diet without adding a lot of calories and fat.

But encouraging children to try fruits and vegetables can sometimes be a daunting challenge.

Fruits and vegetables are the building blocks of a healthy diet. While it's never too late, start early to get children interested in trying different types of foods.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers a website, fruitandveggiesmatter.gov, to help parents incorporate more healthy foods into the family diet. The site includes tips as well as information and recipes.

The CDC suggests that parents:

  • Incorporate fruits and vegetables at every meal
  • Keep fruit in plain view, either on the counter or ready to go in the refrigerator
  • Ensure that they eat fruits and vegetables in front of their children
  • Challenge family members to reach fruit and vegetable goals each day and offer a small prize for achieving it
  • Involve children in decisions about which fruits and vegetables to serve

The site also recommends that parents keep in mind that many times children need to try a fruit or vegetable several times before they truly enjoy it. Also, some children do not prefer certain textures and through trial and error parents can find the best mix for their family.

Have a question for a registered dietitian? Ask Amber!