Handling Non-Adventurous Palates?


fundiculous

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So I am planning my meals a week at a time. 1- My fridge is tiny and 2- because I live an hour from civilization. I am open literally to eating anything. Dinner for breakfast? Great. Leftovers? Fabulous. Breakfast for dinner? you betcha. Mushrooms, onions, cauli, squash, sunchokes, etc, etc,? Count me in. Here is the problem. My husband pretty  much will only eat breakfast for breakfast. WHICH does not include any veggie other than regular potatoes (which I am keeping very limited for him in this whole30), nor does it include fruit. As far as the rest of the meals, he won't eat any veggies other than broccoli, cauliflower, sometimes green beans, some salad, and that is it. I am pretty good with versatility, but it's killing my macros for him, plus I am tired of making double the stuff just to accommodate his toddler 'tude. I do sneak things in sometimes. Example, telling him the zoodles are actually potatoes, umm the yellow squash in his orange juilious smoothie.... but unfortunately with Whole30 I can't bury things under some cheese and call it a day. Anyone have any suggestions for getting stubborn folks to try stuff? It's not like I can entice him with airplane noises and bribes of dessert. Or is it ok just to limit to those veggies? I just feel like he is missing out on the full nutritional picture.

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Your husband is an adult, but my advise is pretty much the same as what I would give if you were dealing with a small child: make the food you think is best (whatever variety of veggies, etc. you want to make) and then allow your husband the choice of whether to eat it or not. As an adult, I suppose there is a greater chance he might walk into the kitchen and make something for himself instead, but that's just fine. I suspect the convenience of having food prepared and right in front of him might lead to trying more things than he would otherwise, but don't trouble yourself trying to convince him to eat anything at all. Just remember, if your husband never eats a bite of squash or mushrooms or whatever, it is not a failing on your part. That is his choice to make, let him make it.

 

Supporting example: every other week i prepare a healthy snack for kids in crisis care. Sometimes there is food (like fresh fruit) that is unfamiliar to them and they say they don't want it. I always say something like, "oh ok, no big deal you don't have to eat it, but I have to put it here in front of you. If you don't want it just leave it alone" then walk away. 9 times out of 10 the next time I turn around they are eating the snack. When I see them eating, I don't comment or praise or gloat, but inside I am smiling.  :)

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When I see them eating, I don't comment or praise or gloat, but inside I am smiling.  :)

 

^This. I used to work at a sleepaway camp and while the food was all "kid friendly" it was fresh cooked and generally pretty healthy. There was no "you cannot leave the table until you eat your peas" but especially with the younger ones, they asked us to put some salad or veg on their plate at lunch and dinner, and a little fruit at breakfast. Sometimes it would be something they weren't too fond of or hadn't tried before so we'd say something like "it's new! Try a bite!" with a big smile, then walk away or talk to another kid. We noticed that if one of the "grown ups" said something about them eating the new veg they got embarrassed and stopped. 

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Also one way to expand his taste buds is to include him in the meal decision.  Ask him to come shopping with you and ask him to choose a new vegetable - just one - that he might interested in trying.  Also maybe include him in finding out how to cook said vegetable as well.  For instance you could get him to try Kohlrabi - which tastes quite a bit like broccoli.  Or he could try kale or collards - these are all from the same vegetable "family" as broccoli and cauliflower.  Turnips are another one.  So make him part of the decision process and maybe just maybe he'll surprise you and eat something else.

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I am in a similar situation.  My wife likes what see likes and things do not always go well when I try something new.  What happens is that if I mention something she thinks she does not like or does not belong together it will cause her to think she does not like it before she tries it.  Sweet potatoes in a lot of whole30 recipes is something along these lines.  I am fine with adjusting recipes to suit us but I think we need to try it first.  Anyway, there are a couple things I have tried successfully,

 

1) Do not say what it is or what is in it until after she had tried it. This works more often than it doesn't.

2) Especially with the Whole 30 recipes, we are making similar stuff out of better ingredients so the food is not going to taste like how you remember.  This worked with the Ranch Dressing recipe and my wife really liked it.

 

Good luck!

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I am pretty good with versatility, but it's killing my macros for him, plus I am tired of making double the stuff just to accommodate his toddler 'tude. I do sneak things in sometimes. Example, telling him the zoodles are actually potatoes, umm the yellow squash in his orange juilious smoothie.... but unfortunately with Whole30 I can't bury things under some cheese and call it a day. Anyone have any suggestions for getting stubborn folks to try stuff? It's not like I can entice him with airplane noises and bribes of dessert. Or is it ok just to limit to those veggies? I just feel like he is missing out on the full nutritional picture.

First what does 'killing my macros for him' mean?  We don't want you tracking macros, points, calories etc... 

 

I personally would stop catering to the 'tude.  He's an adult. He should NOT be expecting you to be making special or extra stuff just because he's being childish.  I would for sure involve him in meal plans (as I would anyone that was sharing the meals) but because it's two of you eating, there should be compromise on both parts... If you want roasted brussel sprouts with a certain dinner and he wants potato, sure, make them both and then you have left over brussel sprouts for lunch the next day... but don't let his attitude dictate what both of you eat or that you have to make two green veggies because he won't eat the one you want... 

 

As far as advice for how to get stubborn folks to eat stuff... I would say treat him like an adult and maybe he'll start acting like an adult... like the poster above said about kids... dont' make a big deal about it.  He's an adult with free will... if he comes around, he comes around... 

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Also one way to expand his taste buds is to include him in the meal decision.  Ask him to come shopping with you and ask him to choose a new vegetable - just one - that he might interested in trying.  Also maybe include him in finding out how to cook said vegetable as well.  For instance you could get him to try Kohlrabi - which tastes quite a bit like broccoli.  Or he could try kale or collards - these are all from the same vegetable "family" as broccoli and cauliflower.  Turnips are another one.  So make him part of the decision process and maybe just maybe he'll surprise you and eat something else.

Oh I wish!!! I have tried that for 10 years lol! But I did get turnips to put in stew...so once again "potatoes" I also got some of the white yams so I can mix them with his breakfast sausage as hash....slowly but surely I will sneak them in :D Good thoughts though! Thanks

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First what does 'killing my macros for him' mean?  We don't want you tracking macros, points, calories etc... 

 

 

I'm not tracking anything really. Just trying to be balanced. I have a general idea of what nutrients are in what, and I feel like eating a spectrum covers that better. Maybe I am wrong, but by not eating a variety he is missing out on some of the benefits of other foods. 

 

I've done the treat like an adult, but that didn't work either. You should see our kitchen standoffs :D I guess I just don't want him to say to heck with it and drive to the mini-mart for a hot dog. It's been a lot of effort to get here, and not super easy. BUT you have a very valid point for sure. I guess I was just hoping for more sneak attack ideas for dishes :D

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I totally get wanting your loved ones to be healthy and doing everything you can to fascilitate that, which it sounds like you do... and then some. Each individual person needs to come to their own place where they are willing to try new things, be adventurous and take their health into their own hands as a priority. If he drives to the mini-mart for a hot dog, that's on him. You can't take it as a failure or take on any blame for not providing him with enough options... again, he's an adult.

I told a story here a while ago about hating olives and then deciding that since they're everywhere and such an easy nutrient source that everytime they were put in front of me, I would try them... I wouldn't seek them out but I would take at least one tiny bite anytime they appeared near me. Took about 10 times of taking a tiny bite of different kinds of olives and then I was hooked. Sometimes we just need to be open-minded about food... but he won't get there by you tricking him into thinking zoodles are potatoes (that actually worked??). He will get there by wanting to be healthier or even just more mature in that most adults will at least TRY something before writing it off.

There's also different cooking methods for veggies. If he hates them because his mom steamed everything till it was gray mush, then I personally don't blame him. But roasted veggies are amazing... any veggie pretty much, chopped up, covered in ghee (or oil or lard) and put in an oven on high heat until they start to caramelize is one way of doing it. Again tho, he needs to be open minded and WANT to try things. And it doesn't always work... I tried cauliflower baked, mashed, riced, fried, roasted, steamed... you name it... I can't stand the stuff. I will eat it to be polite if it's put in front of me because there's nothing actually WRONG with it, but nope... but I can only say 'nope' because I know I actually tried...

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For some people it's also about rebelling, the more pressure and pushing there is, the more they will dig in and do the opposite.

You can see this in quite a lot of people who are told about a serious medical condition, they go out of their way to do everything they're not supposed to do.

 

Some people see more positive change, just quietly leading by example, no comments or pressures.

 

Just as a thought, it doesn't apply to everyone, but some fussy palates are a kind of texture aversion. It's quite common in Asperger's syndrome.

So sometimes the same food in different forms is both appealing and repellant (apple vs applesauce, baked potato vs mashed potato, zoodles vs baked zucchini).

 

From a nutrition point of view, sounds like he's missing most of the orange/red veggie palate (potentially vitamins A & C). Will he eat pumpkin or squash at all? Carrots?

 

Fruit's not required so he's not missing out on anything there.

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