Nutrition Expert Recommends Trying Soup For Kids Who Are Picky Eaters

boy eating his soup

If there is one battle that many parents have with their children every day, it’s getting them to eat their fruits and veggies or at least finish one meal without a struggle at the table. Thankfully, there’s a new report that says parents with picky eaters do have some options. As a matter of fact, nutrition experts say that moms and dads should try soup for a child who is too choosy with their food.

According to Nicole Avena, Ph.D., she says that feeding a toddler soup might help introduce them to the vital nutrients he or she needs. After all, many vegetable and bone broth soups are both tasty and packed with nutrients that your child’s body needs in order to grow healthy and strong.

In a new piece for Psychology Today, Dr. Avena says that a vegetable or other food that your baby doesn’t like can be diced into very small pieces and pureed into a soup that can be served for lunch or dinner. This can help improve your toddler’s tolerance of different vegetables and other foods he or she might have been rejecting at the table.

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girl eating soup
Credit: iStock / RuslanGuzov

Dr. Avena also has a book, “What to Feed Your Baby & Toddler,” where she outlines easy recipes for different soups including Broccoli-Potato Chowder with White Cheddar Cheese, Creamy Tomato Rice Soup, Chicken Noodle Egg-Drop Soup with Baby Bok Choy, and Quick Spinach-Potato Soup.

A study by Penn State further says that many low calorie soups can be helpful, especially if your toddler has a large appetite. But if you have a child with a smaller appetite, it’s advised that parents keep an eye on their portions so they don’t get too full. What’s more, you don’t have to worry about slaving away in the kitchen or simmering a soup for hours, as there are plenty of prepared broths and soups sold at supermarkets. You can use it as a base for your toddler and just add vegetables and other ingredients as you go.

Also, keep in mind that some pre-packaged soups and broths do come with too much sodium so make sure that you read the label. Sodium reduced usually means that the package comes with about 25 percent less sodium than the original product, but it might still be too much for your toddler.

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