Give The Kid a Taste

My mother is a sweet sweet soul, but she has a problem. She eavesdrops. She does not actively look for conversations to listen in on; they seem to find her. Here is a recent one.SCENE: A summer day at a local Trader Joes. A delicious aroma fills the air. An employee is preparing roasted asparagus topped with Parmesan cheese for customers. A mother with her two sons approximately 3 1/2 years old and 18 months old pushes her cart over to the sample table to assess the situation. My mother is behind her and hears the following conversation:

3 1/2 year old son: “Mom, can I taste that?”
Mother: “That’s asparagus honey. You don’t like that.”

When my mother told me this story my initial reaction was that this mother should be grateful that my mother was behind her and I was not. People pay me hundreds of dollars to get their children to eat vegetables. This sweet 3 ½ year old boy is asking for asparagus and the mother is denying him the chance? I do not understand. The sample was not a saturated fat laden pork rind lady; this was a vegetable chock full of vitamins, minerals, fiber and potent antioxidants. He may be ready for asparagus. Go with the flow. Give the kid a taste!

People, if you find your kids asking to try that chick pea, sauteed kale, squash blossom, curried chicken, sashimi (from a reputable place), roasted garlic or strange fruit you never buy at the grocery store, let them have it. This may open up a wonderful world of food for your family and reduce pesky picky eating habits.

About Melanie Silverman

Melanie is a pediatric registered dietitian nutritionist (RD) and a board certified lactation consultant (IBCLC) working primarily in pediatric nutrition for well over 15 years. She spent seven years as a clinical dietitian at The University of Chicago Medical Center in the neonatal intensive care unit, pediatric intensive care unit, adult and pediatric burn units, and high risk pediatric follow-up clinic. She also served as an adjunct faculty member at Loyola University Chicago. Melanie has presented at state and national meetings for the American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition (ASPEN), March of Dimes, Prader-Willi California Foundation, Texas Prader-Willi Association, Oklahoma Prader Willi Syndrome Association, Foundation for Prader-Willi Research (FPWR) in the United States and Canada and the Prader-Willi Syndrome USA (PWSA). She worked hard for her Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry and Spanish from Indiana University and a Master’s degree in Clinical Nutrition from Rush-Presbyterian St. Luke’s Medical Center. A member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, California Dietetic Association, Pediatric Nutrition Practice Group, Women’s Health Group, Nutrition Entrepreneurs and an active member of the International Lactation Consultant Association.