Research Says This Simple Food Hack Actually Works On Picky Eaters

boy picky eater sandwich

Parents of picky eaters know all to well the struggle of getting kids to eat. When your kid is truly a picky eater, it is really hard. When some people say, "if they don't eat what I make, then they don't eat," a parent of a picky eater knows their kid just wouldn't eat. Parents of picky eaters are aware their children aren't getting the most nutritious food always, but sometimes that's just a compromise you have to make. But a recent study reveals a a great way to possibly help with picky eaters. According to this study, star shaped bread has led to kids making healthier eating choices.

This is great news. Many kids are visual eaters, so it makes sense that making their meals more visually interesting would be helpful. The research, which was presented at this year's European Congress on Obesity, in Vienna, Austria, showed that varying shape and color of bread made a difference. After experimenting with various shapes and colors of bread, the research showed the star shape was most popular. Probably because it's still easy to hold.

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Using 38 kids between the ages of 6 and 10, the study tested different types of bread. The bread varied by color, shape, symmetry and taste, with a 1 (best) to 5 (worst) rating. The star shape had a rating of 1.5 compared to a square shape. And even if they didn't like the color of the bread, when it was in a star shape, 76 percent of the kids rated it as good.

Credit: iStock / KatarzynaBialasiewicz

"We conclude that based on these results, children like an attractive child-oriented bread style, in this case a star-shape. Modifying healthy everyday foods in this manner to make them more attractive to children could help children make healthier food choices," said the authors of the study.

So, why is bread especially important? Because many children aren't consuming enough fiber, and bread is an excellent source of fiber. If you have a child who doesn't like bread, they could be missing out on their daily intake of fiber. Fiber is extremely important to growing bodies, especially as they get older. So starting them with good habits at a younger age is crucial. And, what kid doesn't love having fun with their food? Playing with shapes makes for a more interesting eating experience.

Making sandwiches, or other foods your kids like, into shapes is pretty easy. Buy some sandwich cutters or cookie cutters and you can make it into a fun activity. And who knows, maybe involving the kids in the process will make them more interested in trying new things?

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