Community Magazine

Eat Healthy with The Very Hungry Caterpillar

By Jean Campbell

image of a caterpillar with text that encouraging kids to eat healthy and grow sttongGetting Young Children to eat healthy leads to a special edition of The Very Hungary Caterpillar by Eric Carle, being distributed to pediatricians across the United States.

Do you have a picky eater? Are you always trying to get him or her to eat healthy?

Well, it looks like you may be getting some free assistance from a caterpillar who has been helping kids eat healthy for a number of years!

Be sure to check with your pediatrician’s office staff  as to when you can receive a copy of a special edition of  the  book , The Very Hungary Caterpillar, by Eric Carle.  As a parent you will also get a brochure containing tips on getting your child to eat healthy. The effort is a collaboration among the book’s publisher, Penguin Young Readers, and its company’s foundation, We Give Books; the American Academy of Pediatrics; and the Alliance for a Healthier Generation.

The parent handout contains tips for using the book to get your child to eat healthy including:

  • After reading the page where the caterpillar eats the green leaf and feels better, talk to your child about how you too eat green leaves (lettuce, spinach, cabbage, etc.) and how it is good for your body.
  • Talk about how some foods are for sometimes, like cake and ice cream, while other foods like fruits and vegetables are for every day in order to eat healthy.
  • Discuss how it is important to stop eating when you feel full or you will get a stomach ache like the caterpillar.
  • Stress the importance of eating breakfast every day.

If kids are going to eat healthy, kids need to get excited about eating in ways that are fun, such as:

  • Add fruits and veggies to foods your child already likes to eat
  • Cut up fruits and veggies in funny shapes
  • Let your child help you prepare fruit and veggie snacks for school,  after school, sports and other events

You can download the brochure at the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) or  Alliance for a Healthier Generation links above.

It can’t hurt to download the brochure and pick up a copy of the book when it arrives at your pediatrician’s office. If it helps in only one way to get your child to eat healthy will be worth it!

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