According to dieticians, the following tips can alleviate some of the pressure at mealtimes:
* Don't force food on a child or argue about it because they may begin to associate food with anxiety and stress.
* Try to only offer water in between meals to ensure they have a sufficient appetite for their meals.
* Children need to be exposed to a new food as many as 15 times before they will try it. Persevere but don't pressurise.
* If your kids won't eat vegetables, hide them in other foods. You can add grated vegetables such as carrots to casseroles or pasta sauce.
* Involve your child in planning and preparing meals.
* Avoid making separate meals for the family. Give children smaller portions of what you are eating.
* Where possible, eat together as a family.
For recipe ideas, download 101 Square Meals from www.healthpromotion.ie/ publications/