A friend asked us:
If you were trying to get a 42 year old man who avoids vegetables like the plague to start eating them, where would you start? What vegetables could you make the most like candy?
Wow, this is a toughie. It might be harder to get adults to be non-fussy about food than it is with kids, due to the common adage "old habits die hard." My first answer to this question is to not smother the vegetables with cheese, mayonnaise, cream, butter, or other unhealthy sauces, and don't deep-fry them. This just defeats the point of eating vegetables for better health or weight loss.
Try to incorporate as many vegetables as you can in a healthy dish. For example, if you make a ground turkey meatloaf, add diced potatoes, corn, carrots, peas, and celery to it. Give it a mashed potato topping, except make the mashed potatoes with low sodium chicken broth and skim milk, not butter and cream. Chop up and saute some zucchini, mushrooms, eggplant, and artichokes and add them to your pasta sauce. Make an all-vegetable lasagna or pizza using low-fat and skim milk cheeses. Try an egg white omelet packed with veggies.
I also recommend buying a good vegetarian or vegetable cookbook or two and trying out various dishes. Who knows, you may like spinach-mushroom quiche, zucchini frittata, mushroom stew or broccoli-tofu stir fry. Some cookbooks I recommend are:
- The Enchanted Broccoli Forest
- Vegetables Every Day
- The Fussy Eaters' Recipe Book
- World-of-the-East Vegetarian Cooking
How about you? What tips or tricks do you have for training adults to eat vegetables?