…..Of Green Idlis, Star Poori and Shaped Foods
Among the many conversations that us mums have, the one topic that runs through almost all of them is food.
What did you give?
Did she eat? Or did the tiffin box come back as it was?
I’m so irritated and upset, don’t know what to make for him anymore?
Food, its quantity, shape, size….everything is discussed, dissected, innovated and thought upon, all with the end goal of getting more into the children’s tummies.
I’ve been in that yo-yo zone more often than not. At one point of time I didn’t care what the girl ate as long as she was eating, then came the time when it was all about feeding her healthy and less junk (read biscuits and chocolates). Off-late I’m thinking whether the shape, size and color has anything to do with the child’s appetite. Would colored foods & oddly shaped foods get her to eat? Would it?
I’m still figuring out the answer.
When we were kids, I remember us eating whatever was placed in front of us. What dad ate, the entire household consumed, and we never really complained because it was all good. What mattered was the taste, a bit of variety thrown in every now and then, and something quick and easy that my working mom could put together for the entire family. The physical attributes of food were never ever given a thought. No household ever went into making food attractive for kids. If we were hungry, we ate, if not, we caught the next meal.
Cut to now, and its as if mothers are consumed by this vicious, obssessive cycle of feeding kids, taking pains to make food look good. Palak pooris for some, star shaped chapattis for others. Keeping this as an option every now and then adds variety and a bit of inventiveness. Doing this every other day, where the child can hold parents to ransom if not served such food is actually getting into dangerous territory.
What if children cannot have such foods when they grow bigger? What if parents find themselves in situations that makes it difficult to cook such food? What happens then?
Will the child starve? Will his food tastes be compromised? Can he adjust and settle for something less or regular?
Although inventing the design and look of food seems pretty harmless and can be indulged in every now and then, it can do no good if the child learns to expect it at all times and does not offer to compromise. He might even come to expect this everywhere he goes!
What are your thoughts on this? Do you have different views?
Do you feed your child the old fashioned way?