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Top 6 tips on how to get the family eating better

Family treats: Eating healthy is easier than it looks | File photo

Family treats: Eating healthy is easier than it looks | File photo

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Updated: August 23, 2012 9:55AM

The Cleaner Plate Club author Ali Benjamin tells you how to get your kids on the road to healthy eating:

Eat a family dinner now and then. A study published in May found that kids who ate meals with other family members on a regular basis were 24 percent more likely to eat healthy foods than kids who were likely to eat alone.

Quit cajoling. The more you cajole kids to eat something, the less likely they are to like it. Serve up a variety of foods, make sure there’s something they enjoy eat at each meal, and make sure you enjoy the food yourself.

Kids don’t have to like everything. It’s not a character flaw if they don’t care for a particular vegetable. My older daughter likes all kinds of vegetables, but she just isn’t a fan of winter squash. I don’t force the issue, but it still appears on the table now and then.

Eat outside the box. Join a CSA. Shop a farmers market. Visit a farm. Garden.

Put on a thick skin. It can be frustrating to spend time preparing something and then have it be rejected, but like any other aspect of parenting, it’s not an overnight process.

Forget about the Joneses. Know a family that eats only steamed vegetables for breakfast, lunch and dinner? And the kids love it? Whatever. Your family is different — you have your own rhythms, stresses, joys and taste buds.

Gannett News Service

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