Make Meals a Family Event

By Kary Woodruff

Do you have a picky eater at home? Or maybe multiple picky eaters? That makes it challenging to get the right types of foods to make your meals heart healthy. As I meet with the My Heart Challenge contestants individually, I am working with them to make healthier eating a family event. Here are some of the tips I've provided to them, and think can apply to almost any household or setting. 

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Whether it’s a spouse, children, or a roommate (or all of the above), get the household involved in meal planning and preparation. We know that when other people get involved in coming up with meal ideas, and help make the meals, they are more likely to eat what is prepared.

Have each person in the house pick one (or two) meals a week.

Assign meal prepping tasks to each person. Even a two year old can help ‘stir’ and help ‘pour’ ingredients (with some assistance, of course), and when they feel they are a part of the process, they are more likely to eat.

Make it fun! Have kids help design the meals into fun shapes such as making clown faces with cut up veggies & hummus.

If you need a few good recipes, here are some you are welcome to check out:

 - Cilantro Marinated Sockeye Salmon

 - Edamame, Corn & Tomato Salad

 - Sunflower, Cherry & Oatmeal Bars

 - Broccoli, Mushroom and Pine nut Frittata

 - Banana Bran Muffins 

 - Kale Chips