Getting kids to pass up junk food in favour of healthier fruits and veggies has led to many a mealtime meltdown for parents everywhere. Now, researchers from the University of Alberta offer a simple solution: give them an apron.
Published last month by Public Health Nutrition in an early online release, the study involved a survey of students in 151 schools across Alberta to learn about kids’ experiences with cooking and food choices.
Nearly one-third of children reported helping with meal prep at least once a day; another one-third said they helped one to three times a week. A quarter of children helped once a month, and 12.4 per cent avoided the kitchen completely.
In general, children preferred fruits to veggies, but children who helped with cooking showed a greater preference for both. Vegetable preference was also 10 per cent higher among children who helped cook.
The data also showed that kids who did meal prep and cooking were more confident about the importance of making healthier food choices.
The results underscore the value of getting kids interested in mealtime activities in the home, but added there could be room for schools to get involved, too.
“You can go into schools and have cooking classes and cooking clubs to help them boost their fruit and vegetable intake and make healthier choices,” she said.
If you or someone you know would be interested in hosting a kids’ cooking class at Renegade Bakery & Culinary Studio, call us at (979) 268-2253.