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Old 01-31-2012, 06:03 PM
 
5,893 posts, read 2,470,389 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elnina View Post
educator1953: ^^^ What about putting less on the plate and clean it - why waste food??
I see it all the time in places buffet style. People put so much food on their plates then eat a bite or two and waste the rest. Same at home - put on less food, and get a seconds if you still want more.
I'm with educator1953 in that I never had a 'clean plate' rule with my children. I did as a kid...I have obesity (as do my father, his sister, his brother, as well as my husband, who were all raised with the 'clean plate' rule). I was forced to finish everything on my plate, including things that made me gag...sometimes to the point of occasionally vomiting at the table. Hope my father was proud of himself.

I did not wish to subject my children to dinner table horrors...they got single-bite portions of foods they didn't especially care for, larger portions of foods they liked. They are both slender and trauma-free.

As far as portion sizes, my kids do their best to only serve themselves what they think they will eat--as do I and my husband--yet it isn't uncommon to occasionally have 'eyes bigger than your stomach'. My husband will force himself to finish. I do not. Neither do my kids.

I don't understand the point of forcing food into a stomach past the point of being comfortably full. If we can't finish, we make all attempts to store and reheat, but sometimes that isn't exactly practical (some things don't reheat well).

Just my 2 cents.
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Old 01-31-2012, 06:04 PM
 
Location: Nebraska
4,179 posts, read 5,757,714 times
Reputation: 9219
My kids learned where food came from and what it took to process and cook it.

We always had a garden, and one of my daughter's first memories is watching me hang a fresh-killed wild hog in the back yard and butcher it. We used to raise, kill, clean, butcher and eat our own chickens, too. They weren't 'grossed out', they thought it was fascinating how animals and plants could feed them, and their waste recycled to feed plants and other animals. I taught all my kids to cook at an early age.

Everything was a scientific process and learning curve; they learned how to figure fractions by doubling recipes, built their own weather station in the back yard to determine how wind, relative humidity, and temperature affect plants. They learned with a 'whole earth' approach; the biology of their bodies was a part of the biology of the world. They learned to fish and crab and shrimp and how and why these creatures could be utilized as well.

My baby turns 26 this year, and she and her older brothers all will try everything at least once. We used to make games out of tasting what spices and flavors were in foods; they are all accomplished cooks in the kitchen, hunters in the field, and love to surprise their friends with new tastes. They use 'secret recipes' they have created over the years - like cinnamon in spaghetti sauce, or brussel sprouts stir-fried in butter.

Because we taught them at a young age what food was and where it came from, that it could be changed to suit their palate or to create a totally new recipe, food became a pleasure and a challenge to them, not just something Mom or Dad put on a plate and made them eat. The younger you start them picking blueberries or helping in the kitchen, the more affinity they have with food.
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Old 01-31-2012, 06:22 PM
 
Location: N of citrus, S of decent corn
17,220 posts, read 20,234,231 times
Reputation: 26309
We were polite and respectful to our children, and in return, they are polite and respectful to us.
I cooked healthy meals, and this is what they ate. There were no multiple meals to accomodate different tastes. As the children got older, we respected that there were some things they did not like to eat (liver, brussels sprouts, some fish). That was fine, but they might not have enough to eat that night. We had a kid who wanted not to eat one item, so he thought he could load up on something else, but that meant that there wasn't enough of that for everyone.
I must add at this point that one of the boys only liked junk, lived on junk and is now 40 years old and still lives on junk. He became a Special Forces Operator in the Army and an awesome physical specimen, so all you mothers who are worried about your kid's diet can pretty much relax.
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Old 01-31-2012, 06:57 PM
 
Location: Minneeeesoootah
3,500 posts, read 4,577,465 times
Reputation: 3364
You can't really raise them to be good eaters, you can feed them a variety of foods and they will either liken it or not.
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Old 01-31-2012, 07:07 PM
 
Location: Delaware
920 posts, read 857,800 times
Reputation: 1058
when i was growing up you ate what was for dinner or you got nothing - this may have been somewhat helpful however the educator was college - there were 2 choices dinner and a bologna sandwich - you would be surprised how you begin to try new things
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Old 01-31-2012, 07:23 PM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,691 posts, read 19,730,771 times
Reputation: 11862
Quote:
Originally Posted by lubby View Post
I don't have kids but I was raised to finish my plate or at least try everything on my plate. Things I ate as a kid I won't eat now. I used to like bologna sandwiches with butter , the thought grosses me out now. I'll take mayo instead. We always had vegetables served with dinner even though my mother did not like them. She does not eat much fruit but always had it for everyone else to eat. She was raised on meat and potatoes. I eat all kinds of fruit and veggies now. Used to love pork chops as a kid now I detest them. My mother used to fry alot of foods so maybe that's why it was so good. I do have a wide variety of foods I eat even though DH thinks I am picky. Good eating habits start at a young age and if it's not introduced at home by parents then you end up with a child who only eats chicken nuggets and pizza. My mom actually used to make 2 hot dogs on a bun with potato salad for my brother for breakfast when he was a kid because he did not like cereal or eggs.
Yeah it's funny kids will eat certain gross things like that but will turn up their noses at healthy, 'normal' foods like vegetables.

I don't think you should make your kids eat anything too weird or strong-tasting - my mum would sometimes cook these mushrooms that would stink up the whole house, a certain kind of fungus, which has turned me off most types of mushrooms till this day.

Anyway, to start with they should be presented with the basic, familiar representatives of the main food groups - I think if you're vegan/vegetarian you should owe it to your kids to make up their own minds. If you find they have a taste for greens (some kids do), offer them something a bit more exotic and see if they'll take to it. Be firm with sticking to this regime, or else they'll find they can get away without eating vegetables.
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Old 01-31-2012, 07:25 PM
 
Location: The western periphery of Terra Australis
24,691 posts, read 19,730,771 times
Reputation: 11862
Quote:
Originally Posted by SCGranny View Post
My kids learned where food came from and what it took to process and cook it.

We always had a garden, and one of my daughter's first memories is watching me hang a fresh-killed wild hog in the back yard and butcher it. We used to raise, kill, clean, butcher and eat our own chickens, too. They weren't 'grossed out', they thought it was fascinating how animals and plants could feed them, and their waste recycled to feed plants and other animals. I taught all my kids to cook at an early age.

Everything was a scientific process and learning curve; they learned how to figure fractions by doubling recipes, built their own weather station in the back yard to determine how wind, relative humidity, and temperature affect plants. They learned with a 'whole earth' approach; the biology of their bodies was a part of the biology of the world. They learned to fish and crab and shrimp and how and why these creatures could be utilized as well.

My baby turns 26 this year, and she and her older brothers all will try everything at least once. We used to make games out of tasting what spices and flavors were in foods; they are all accomplished cooks in the kitchen, hunters in the field, and love to surprise their friends with new tastes. They use 'secret recipes' they have created over the years - like cinnamon in spaghetti sauce, or brussel sprouts stir-fried in butter.

Because we taught them at a young age what food was and where it came from, that it could be changed to suit their palate or to create a totally new recipe, food became a pleasure and a challenge to them, not just something Mom or Dad put on a plate and made them eat. The younger you start them picking blueberries or helping in the kitchen, the more affinity they have with food.
Yes it's great when kids can see the whole process, from raising chicks to eating a roast chicken, from raising piglets to that smoke-cured ham.

I just turned 26 recently, and over the past year have decided to become even more adventurous with eating. While I'll probably never enjoy tripe, or chicken's feet, I've forced myself to eat a tiny piece - the size of a 'quarter' at least - merely to experience it's taste. Maybe not as 'full on' as a mouthful but sometimes the taste is so strong and unfamiliar that that's enough.

Was in Thailand recently and was looking at a platter of bugs - grubs, grasshoppers and worst of all for me, big cockroaches (the kind that freak me out when they invade our house). I was this close to ordering one of the small cooked grubs (the size and appearance of a mealworm) but then I felt a surge in my stomach, as I made the mistake of going after I'd had a full meal. So I thought 'I'll try when I'm not so full' but never did.
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Old 01-31-2012, 07:31 PM
 
Location: Middle America
18,205 posts, read 15,658,532 times
Reputation: 21299
Quote:
Originally Posted by gentlearts View Post
I must add at this point that one of the boys only liked junk, lived on junk and is now 40 years old and still lives on junk. He became a Special Forces Operator in the Army and an awesome physical specimen, so all you mothers who are worried about your kid's diet can pretty much relax.
I wouldn't go that far. My dad has always been the picture of heath, despite existing almost exclusively on sugar, fat, and fried foods...even heathful food, he prefers to be prepared in the most sugar and/or fat-laden way possible. He also had, for most of his life, a very, very physically active job (think lumberjack-style exertion), and maintained healthy weight and has a strong cardiovascular system (even with 40 years of smoking, eek; his doctor was always amazed at how healthy his lungs, heart, arteries, and veins were, as she said, they "had no right to be.") He quit smoking in his late 50s, but he still eats crap.

He's lucky. I certainly wouldn't suggest that most people who include pan-fried potatoes, pork sausage, chips, Spam, cartons of ice cream, Snickers bars, and a pack and a half of Basic Menthols as a part of their daily routine would be the picture of health based on his experience. It's certainly not indicative of good health, he's simply fortunate that it hasn't cost him.
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Old 01-31-2012, 07:54 PM
 
2,288 posts, read 1,553,695 times
Reputation: 3192
The most important thing to get your kids to eat well is make veggies and fruits taste good, or in other words, to not be bad at cooking.

Looking back at my youth, I think the real reason I was such a picky eater was because my parents were terrible at cooking vegetables. They were always over cooked and bland.
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Old 02-01-2012, 01:23 AM
 
3,993 posts, read 2,338,777 times
Reputation: 4673
My daughters (long grown) were never really picky eaters when they were small, but my oldest became a vegetarian at age 13. She thought it was "cool", but it was infuriating to me. She wouldn't eat meat, eggs, fish, or drink milk, but she would always load up on potato chips, ice cream (she chose to ignore that it was a dairy product), snack cakes and cookies (again, she ignored that there were eggs in those), etc. When we'd go out to a restaurant, she'd constantly whine that there was "nothing she could eat". We thought (HOPED) it was just a phase that she'd outgrow, but we reached a happy medium. She acquired some vegetarian cookbooks, prepared a lot of her food preferences, and even got me to (grudgingly) try some of them. She's now 26 years old, is married, runs a health food business, and is a SUPERB vegetarian cook!
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