Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Handling A Vegetarian

When children are  little, it is the duty of us, as  parents (especially the mother) to see that the children  eat appropriate food at appropriate times.As parents, we often  try to get  the best food across to our children.And on a regular basis,cook healthy meals and feed it to our young off springs. If they didn’t eat to full ,we go to the extent of  supplementing  them with extras, in the form of vitamin syrups.
Most children  at this young  age become very fastidious over food and wouldn’t even think of eating anything new that the mother introduces .By the time they reach  the  adolescent years, they will have the independence of following their own eating habits. At this stage they may have preferences between healthy and unhealthy foods.
If your children show an interest in fruits and vegetables.Be sure to make  dishes using their favourite fruits and vegetables.Each day try to make a different dish. Sometimes they wouldn’t like the same taste of food that is being laid on the table.Often children take hold of whatever they see in the refrigerator when they are hungry, so have slices of fruits and a bowl of salad made  with their favourite vegetables.Try keeping the healthiest food easily accessible.
There are times when they crave for  junk food ..And that’s when the war begins  at the table.Don’t prohibit junk food all at once .It’s all right  if they eat it once in a way.You can help your children limit  junk food as much as possible. And as they start growing they will freely have their choice of food too.
I have a daughter who didn’t quite like the taste of fish,chicken or beef  right from  her toddler years.and I used to think that  it was just a passing phase and didn’t try to coerce her into eating meat.But then a few years later,when she  was about  seven  she started to relish my meat dishes.However one day, while we were having cooked beef curry for dinner, she suddenly prompted where meat came from. And when I said from the cow, she hurriedly left the table, her plate untouched, and innocently said, “Eww…gross  ! A cow dish!’.And ever since, she has not eaten anything that has meat in it. 
She’s fourteen  now and a vegetarian, Being a vegetarian necessarily doesn’t mean she' s eating all the vegetables that I make..She is picky too.! She mostly loves to eat an unbalanced vegetarian diet which consists of fried food and  potatoes.She intensely dislikes when the vegetables are cooked  in the usual type, curried vegetables with gravy, which is commonly prepared in a typical Sri Lankan home.Now I have adapted a different mode of cooking  vegetable dishes just for her.After a lot of convincing,she has started to eat the baked variety.I try my best to see that her diet is nutritionally adequate and healthful. I have been  trying to supplement her with all kinds of everything.  So far I have not succeeded in my many attempts to make her change her mind  to eat meat again .But I guess my tactics are not working anymore.

                       My daughter’s favourite-cauliflower,carrots and zucchini

                        The veggies baked with tomato paste and  mild spices


  1. Wow, that IS hard. And so challenging, menu-planning-wise.

  2. Hi Aynzan,

    It is very hard on you when you are trying to please your daughter. Being vegetarian does not necessary means having unhealthy habits even sometimes it is better on older age to eliminate meat as much as possible. Just recently I started eating only fish and more vegetable dishes due to the fact I believe the meat here is not healthy. I feel great and much healthier than before. Your daughter is very young maybe slowly you could try to teach her how to cook her dishes, this way she will slowly stop to be very picky and learn and try new methods of cooking to please her taste even make a new dish for all family one day and surprise you.

    What type of spices did you put in your second picture dish?