Guest writer Maria Jimenez speaks about evolving views on food:
I have never been a “bad” eater. What I mean by bad is that I rarely lose my appetite and will eat or try mostly everything. I love food and it has always been one of the most enjoyable aspect of life. I viewed vegetables as a necessary evil, fruits as healthy but enjoyable, and junk food is the best most delicious food. Now that I am older I realized how my thoughts on food were boxed. Ruth has helped me realize that food is food. If you enjoy it eat it! Having this comment in mind I tried vegetables and focused on the taste: do I like this? Am I enjoying this? By removing the “I have to eat this” mentality I realized something I never knew. I actually enjoy vegetables.
Now I approach food differently. I do not label it. In doing so my children have been more willing to eat what’s in front of them. All parents have the same concerns about their kids. One is we all just want them to be healthy and we know this comes from what they eat. But without the saying things like “You have to finish your food”, “You have to eat it because it’s healthy” or what most parents tend to say “Finish your vegetables”. There is no pre-notion. Kids are intuitive and will eat the right if given the opportunity. And eat what you give them. It’s important to remember that kids taste pallet is changing and developing. So, if they eat something one day they may not another day and vice versa. Realizing this has also helped me not feel frustrated and keep offering different foods.
Though I have realized I enjoy vegetables there are days where I don’t realize that I am labeling a food. Putting it in a category that makes me unconsciously view it as negative or “necessary evil”. But as the days go by this becomes less and less.
Maria Jimenez is the older sister of the blog’s creator, Ruth. She has two young children, one girl soon-to-be 5 years old and one boy three years old. Recently, Maria wants to add to her associate’s degree and has returned to FIDM to earn her bachelor’s degree.