'Teen Mom' Farrah Abraham Is Fooling Herself More Than Her Kid With Healthy Food Tricks

Rant 7

veggies Farrah AbrahamTeen Mom star Farrah Abraham is a whiz in the kitchen and even went to culinary school to become a chef. She can create all kinds of food magic, but it sounds like one of her favorite things is to trick her 3-year-old daughter Sophia into eating her veggies.

She blends Brussels sprouts into fruit dips and greens into meatballs and she says it's a "parent's job" to make their kids more adventurous eaters. More power to her that she is trying to get her daughter to be healthy, but let's not pretend that she is advancing her taste buds. That's just not realistic.

As the mother of two very picky children, I feel the pain of moms everywhere who want to get our kids to eat their green vegetables. I have mixed kale into smoothies to cover the taste and done some sneaky things with applesauce in baked goods and veggie pastas, all in the interest of increasing my kid's vitamin intake. But I don't pretend for a moment that it is to help them become less picky.

In fact, if anything, it makes things WORSE. The kids learn to expect everything to taste good and they don't develop diverse taste buds and mom works overtime trying to blend and chop and disguise.

After years of this stress myself, I finally just decided to focus on what they DO like. They eat a lot of the same things -- beans, cheese, rice, broccoli, healthy breaded chicken, nitrate-free hot dogs, and veggie pasta. They also get a lot of fruit as a side dish since both my kids love fruit.

To me, it's more important to get them to try the real foods on their own then to try to hide them. If they won't eat Brussels sprouts after they try them, then I can at least feed them broccoli and know they had something green.

My hope is that at some point their taste will mature and they will like to eat their veggies on their own. But I am not going to hide it in the hopes that they will like it. It's too much work, dishonest, and ultimately ineffective. It sets the bar too high on taste and kids aren't "developing" anything but the expectation that all food should taste a certain way.

Do you hide healthy foods in other foods?


Image via richard_north/Flickr

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the4m... the4mutts

It worked for my kids. I gradually increased the amount of veggies in the meatballs, mashed potatoes, smoothies, etc, until they got used to the taste, then put them on the side. My kids now eat them willingly.

MrsYo... MrsYoung1287

No, thank god my 2 year old love veggies so I don't have to hide them. He eats pretty much everything even asparagus.

Shrew2u Shrew2u

My eldest is veg-averse.  She's 17, so I hope her tastes change in a few years.  For now, I hide the veg where I can get away with it - veg purée in meatloaf and pasta sauce, a bit of puréed cauliflower mixed in with her mashed potato.  She wants to teach English in Japan, so I have a feeling she's going to have to expand her palette eventually out of sheer hunger.

I did things differently with the younger two.  When my now-3 and 5 year olds were babies starting on puréed food, I never gave them fruit. I wouldn't even mix it with cereal - they got green beans or mixed vegetables stirred in.  I stayed away from most fruit when I was nursing them, too.  It sounds insane (IS insane), but I think it got them acclimated to vegetables very early on.  I don't have any problems getting them to eat vegetables, of all colors and in their obvious forms, at 3 and 5.  At mealtime, they typically finish their veg first and ask for more - makes me wonder sometimes if they weren't swapped for pod-children by aliens.

nonmember avatar Samantha

Ive got a picky kid, a picky bf, and im slightly picky. Honestly, us grown ups usually just suck it up, kids on the other hand will starve themselves in order to not eat vegetables. I do in home daycare, ive seen too many things. Id rather know my kid is healthy, and have us all comfortable & happy, than fight over food. Fighting over food does NOTHING GOOD. I dont want my daughter to be uncomfortable when it comes to food, so when the bf & i move in together, i plan to mix things. To go that extra step to make mealtime a relaxing & enjoyable experience for my family.

SuzyB... SuzyBarno

I think mixing veggies in with other foods to disguise them is counterintuitive too. I try to stick to things my kids like while always offering a variety. Strange that neither of my kids like orange veggies(carrots and yams). I still try though! I always thought that those were supposed to be the most popular veggies among kids.

amiec... amiecanflie

Suzy, my son ALWAYS refused orange vegetables! But he loves orange slices and clementines. 

nonmember avatar S

It's a known fact that the more you eat healthy foods the more you start to like them. Taste buds are malleable little suckers.

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