There’s A Rainbow On My Plate

Eat the Rainbow

“There’s a rainbow on my plate!”

How many times have we told our kids, “Eat your greens, they’re good for you!” only to have them make a face and turn their nose up at the ‘healthy’ greens.

Encouraging our kids to eat fruit and veggies can be hard, especially when there’s the lure, not to mention, the convenience of chocolates, biscuits, sweetened juices and other fast foods.

We know that they need to eat a variety of fruits and vegetables because they contain different vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that their growing bodies need. But how do we convince them to eat their ‘daily 5 portions’?

Bring in the Rainbow!

As any food marketer will tell you, kids are attracted to food with bright colors. So, mamas, let’s use that to our advantage! By playing up the colors and emphasizing the fun factor, we could get kids to try some healthy snacks.

What’s in a Rainbow?

Kids need to eat a lot of colors of fruits and veggies every day. Each color adds a different aspect to their health as is represented in the table below:

RED Fruits and Vegetables help strengthen their heart Tomatoes, Beets, Red Cabbage, Red Peppers, Cherries, Cranberries, Pink Grapefruit, Red Grapes, Pomegranate, Strawberries
Orange Fruits and Vegetables help strengthen their eyesight Sweet potatoes, Carrots, Orange peppers, Pumpkin, Apricots, Mangoes, Oranges, Nectarines, Papayas, Peaches
Yellow Fruits and Vegetables help strengthen their immunity to stay healthy Butternut, Squash, Lemons, Yellow Peppers, sweet Corn, Yellow Apples, Grapefruit, Pears, and Pineapple
Green Fruits and Vegetables help strengthen their bones and teeth Kale, Spinach and other leafy vegetables, Artichokes, Asparagus, Green Beans, Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, Peas, Zucchini, Green Onions, Green apples, Kiwi
Blue and Purple fruits and Vegetables help improve their memory Eggplant, Blueberries, Blackberries, Purple Grapes, Figs, Plums and Prunes

 

Let’s Draw a Rainbow!

Kids love to play games, and here’s a game that we mamas will love as well.

  • 1. Ask your child to draw a rainbow.
  • 2. Bring the Rainbow drawing whenever he’s eating.
  • 3. Ask your child to put an X on the rainbow picture to match the color of the fruit or vegetable that is served!
  • 4. Highlight the benefit behind each color of the rainbow.

Making the Rainbow Edible

Now that we’ve got them excited about the ‘Rainbow Game’, how do we go about incorporating the different colors in our child’s diet? Mamas, we have a sample menu for you…

Breakfast:

  • Spanish Omelet (Eggs with sautéed onions, mushrooms, Green and Red Peppers)
  • 1 Slice of whole-wheat Bread
  • ½ Grapefruit or 1 Squeezed Orange

Morning Snack:

  • 1 Fruit skewer (Kiwi, Strawberries, Mango, Green Apple and Pineapple)

Lunch:

  • Sautéed Spinach and Orange Salad
  • Chicken Breast and Sweet Potato Puree with Green Peas

Afternoon Snack:

  • Blueberry Oatmeal Muffin

Dinner:

  • Tuna sandwich with shredded Lettuce and Carrots
  • Corn on Cob

Mamas, do you have other tips? Please post them in the comments section below.

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