Let kids lead with Jennifer House

Let kids lead with Jennifer House
“It's not our job to get our kids to eat. It's our job to supply them with the food at regular times. But from there, they are certainly the best judges of their own appetite.” - Jennifer House

On this episode of the Plan Simple Meals Podcast, I’m really excited to talk with Jennifer House, a mom of three and a registered dietitian, who has a private practice helping moms nourish their families with confidence. Jennifer works a lot with moms around first foods and early feeding. She follows World Health Organization, American Academy of Pediatrics, Dietitians of Canada recommendations to wait until about 6 months to start solids.

We talk about baby-led weaning, skipping the purees and feeding babies what you eat when they are ready. This makes life easier for parents and allows babies to control how much they want to eat. And when you are feeding your baby what you eat, it can help make meals healthier for everybody since we often want to feed our babies healthy foods.

But we don’t just talk about babies, we talk setting kids up for good eating habits as they grow.

We talk about:

  • teaching kids to listen to their own bodies regarding how much to eat (and how hard it is for parents to let go and let how much they eat vary from day to day)
  • how behavior can be an indicator of food allergies or sensitivities
  • ideas for what to feed babies: eggs, chili (rinsed to reduce spiciness), meat from a slow cooker, egg or chicken or cucumber from salad . . .
  • how less parental pressure and more kid control can actually help with picky eaters
  • the ways we influence our kids around food through our own behavior whether it is what we eat or how we talk about food or our bodies


Calling all women balancing wellness, work, family and self… Learn a 15-minute daily practice and go to bed each night proud of what you got done.

    Doable Changes

    MAKE A NO YUCK RULE. Practice not saying “Yuck” or complaining about part of a meal they don’t like. Teach your kids to say “No thank you” or simply leave what they don’t like. For your part, resist the urge to make them eat the food they leave to the side.

    SERVE A FAMILY MEAL. Instead of catering to picky eaters, make a family meal that reflects the way you want your family to eat. You can make adaptations, like rinsing a spicy chili for babies or adding hot sauce for mom, but serve everyone the same food.

    GET YOUR KIDS INVOLVED IN GROWING FOOD. This can be a windowsill box of herbs or some lettuce in the backyard. Kids get intrigued with seeing things grow and getting to pick and eat food, which may encourage them to try foods they otherwise would shun. This one takes a little while to take root, but plant something this week or buy some herb plants that kids can start snipping from right away.

    From Overwhelm to Ease


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