Eating more fruit and vegies every day can sometimes be a struggle. However, research shows that we’re more likely to do so if they’re available and ready to eat.
Children may need to try new fruits and vegies up to 10 times before they accept them. So stay patient and keep offering them. It can also help to prepare and serve them in different and creative ways.
Some ideas to try:
- Involve the whole family in choosing and preparing fruit and vegies.
- Select fruit and vegies that are in season – they taste better and are usually cheaper.
- Keep a bowl of fresh fruit in the home.
- Be creative in how you prepare and serve fruit and vegetables – such as raw, sliced, grated, microwaved, mashed or baked; serve different coloured fruit and vegies or use different serving plates or bowls.
- Include fruit and vegies in every meal. For example, add chopped, grated or pureed vegetables to pasta sauces, meat burgers, frittatas, stir-fries and soups, and add fruit to breakfast cereal.
- Snack on fruit and vegies. Try corn on the cob; jacket potato topped with reduced fat cheese; plain popcorn (unbuttered and without sugar or salt coating); chopped vegies with salsa, hummus or yoghurt dips; stewed fruit; fruit crumble; frozen fruit; or muffins and cakes made with fruit or vegies.
- Try different fruits or vegies on your toast – banana, mushrooms or tomatoes.
- Add chopped or pureed fruit to plain yoghurts.
- Make a fruit smoothie with fresh, frozen or canned (in natural or unsweetened juice) fruit; blend it with reduced fat milk and yoghurt.
- Chop up some fruit or vegie sticks for the lunchbox.
- In summer, freeze fruit on a skewer (or mix with yoghurt before freezing) for a refreshing snack.
- Make fruit-based desserts (such as fruit crumble or baked, poached or stewed fruit) and serve with reduced fat custard.
- Have fresh fruit available at all times as a convenient snack – keep the fruit bowl full and have diced fruit in a container in the fridge.