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Dip May Encourage Children to Eat More Vegetables

By Stephen Lau and editing by Stacey Sexton
 
A study that appeared in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association explains why children don’t eat their vegetables — their sensitivity to bitterness.
 
How can you solve this problem? Just add a small amount of dip to a serving of vegetables, according to the study results.
 
Jennifer Orlet Fisher, director of the Family Eating Laboratory at Temple's Center for Obesity Research and Education, and colleagues conducted the study on 152 pre-school aged kids.  The kids were asked to have broccoli at snack time over a 7-week period. They were served two kinds of dip—low-fat and a regular version.
 
Broccoli consumption was increased by 80 percent among the participants.

Fisher explains, "Children sensitive to bitterness may avoid certain vegetables, but offering a low-fat dip could make it easier for those foods to become an accepted part of children's diet. Our research shows that offering dip is another tool that parents can use to help children learn to eat their vegetables."