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7 Expert-Backed Tips for Nurturing Healthy Eating Habits in Children

As parents and caregivers, we have the enormous task to model to our children not just how to eat, but how to form a positive life long relationship with food. This responsibility can sometimes feel like an uphill battle, particularly when voices in the child nutrition world differ from the voices around food we grew up with. But the journey is not insurmountable; it can, in fact, be as wholesome and fun as the deliciously varied foods we strive to prepare for our little ones.

In this blog post, we've gathered some precious nuggets of advice from seven superstars of child nutrition and feeding. They'll be our guides on this delicious journey!




Melanie Potock: Conquering Picky Eating

Melanie Potock, our first guide, is an expert when it comes to the picky eating dilemma. Check out her Instagram for lots of incredible tips @mymunchbug_melaniepotock. Melanie has an awesome strategy she calls 'Snack Branding'. To bring excitement to snack time, she recommends using fun stickers of your little one's favorite characters to jazz up their snacks! Who knew fighting picky eating could be such a playful adventure?

Watch her video on snack branding, here!








Min Kwon: Embracing Non-Pressure Eating

Next, we have Min Kwon (@kidfriendly.meals) reminding us to stay cool, chill out, and de-stress the mealtime environment. Min's wisdom teaches us that when we remove pressure from the dinner table, it makes space for all sorts of wonderful foodie exploration.

In this video, Min revealed the instant transformation in her children’s demeanor — from resistance to relish — once the pressure was lifted. Her approach spotlights the importance of creating a joyful and safe space for eating, which not only nurtures a love for food but also strengthens the family bond over mealtime explorations.







Kids.Eat.In.Color: Where Fun Meets Nutrition

Got little ones who are playful with food? Jennifer Anderson from @Kids.Eat.In.Color is all for it! One of her silly yet functional tips is to use toothpicks to make the mealtime experience lively. Who said you can't play with your food?

Got little ones who are playful with food? Jennifer Anderson from @Kids.Eat.In.Color is all for it! One of her silly yet functional tips is to use toothpicks to make the mealtime experience lively. Who said you can't play with your food?

Jennifer’s toothpick trick spreads laughter and learning in equal measure by providing tactile and visual stimulation to kids. She explains how using toothpicks is not only exciting for kids to eat with but also acts as a tool to introduce new textures and food combinations in a playful way.





Clara Nosek & Dalina Soto: Advocates for Mindful Eating Conversations

Clara Nosek () and Dalina Soto (@your.latina.nutritionist) preach the power of words. They show us just how our mealtime chatter can shape our little ones' food relationships. Remember, it's not just the food that needs to be wholesome, but also the words we use when talking about it.

The duo's insightful video debunks common myths and offers guidance on what not to say when encouraging healthy eating. By understanding and adjusting our dialogue, we can create a positive, supportive eating environment that respects a child's individuality and encourages a lifelong appreciation for healthy choices.



YummyToddlerFood: A Balanced Approach to Parenting and Eating

We've all been there... Some days you don't have the time or energy to hand craft meals for your kids, and that's okay!

Amy Palanjian, the force behind @YummyToddlerFood, is a fantastic resource when it comes to easy toddler recipes and understanding realistic parenting approaches. She emphatically deconstructs the misconceptions surrounding 'junk' and 'healthy' foods and explains how avoiding labels can open up a world of freedom and positivity in your child's feeding journey.

Watch to see how the same parent can create a nutritious and fun lunch for their kids, no matter the strategy behind it.






CanDoKiddo: A Therapeutic View of Sensory Needs

@CanDoKiddo’s Rachel Coley, an Occupational Therapist, adds a physical fitness spin to eating. She shows us how little movements can make our kiddos' mealtime journey more fun and developmentally enriching.

Have you ever wondered how to enhance your child's sensory needs to encourage healthy development?

Rachel's exploration of sensory needs highlights how activities like being upside down on the couch, chewing on objects, or squishing playdough can be connected to the development of oral motor skills. It's a holistic view of feeding that places physical development at the heart of the nutrition conversation!




Solanda's Story: Follow Your Child's Lead

Last but not least, Solanda, co-founder of GoBe and mom to four amazing girls, brings in a fresh perspective on child-led autonomy in eating. Through the lens of Ellyn Satter's Division of Responsibility in Feeding, Solanda recognized the importance of allowing children autonomy within structured meal choices. It was this blend of professional expertise and personal insight that sparked the creation of the Snack Spinner, a tool that lets kids make nutritious choices while learning about balance and variety in their diet.

And how about this personal example? Solanda's daughter, Merce, revealed her avocado allergy in the most unexpected way.

From her earliest spoonfuls as a baby, one of Solanda's daughters, Merce exhibited a love for avocados—exploring their texture and eating them without a problem. However, as she blossomed into toddlerhood, her appetite for avocados unexpectedly disappeared. Perplexed, Solanda respected Merce's evolving tastes, acknowledging that children's eating habits can be varied. It was only years later, during an afternoon of crafting natural face masks, that the root of her distaste came to light—Merce was allergic to avocados!

Can you believe it? It just goes to show that our kiddos can offer surprising insights if we tune in and trust them.

It's a gentle reminder for us to extend grace and understanding to our little ones as they navigate their unique food journeys.

To deepen your understanding of this concept, consider exploring "Child of Mine" by Ellyn Satter, an insightful resource that demystifies the feeding relationship between parent and child.


These seven experts are our mealtime maestros, harmonizing a symphony of playful, pressure-free, empowering tactics to make mealtime a joy for us and our little ones. Exploring the world of food should be a journey of love, laughter and learning, one healthy bite at a time!

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