Getting children to eat healthy foods can be a battle. Some parents, tired of this struggle, have resorted to hiring “picky-eater coaches.”

In case that’s not in your budget, “Parenting Coaches” John & Kendra Smiley can help you win the food war.

• Are you surprised to discover the existence of Picky eater coaches?
What’s the old saying?  “Find a need and fill it.”  Obviously these coaches found the need and they’re filling it quite profitably.

• “…Picky eater coaches don’t come cheap,”
According to a post on Café Mom. “For some, an hour-long consultation can cost up to $250, plus follow-up visits. And many coaches say they are able to resolve most instances of super picky eaters for the low, low price of $400.”

• Not in the budget?  There are some basics strategies that can be used to convert these picky eaters.
One easy idea is to make subtle substitutions like choosing a cereal that is similar to the child’s favorite but contains less sugar per helping.  If sugar-laden drinks are a problem, substituting seltzer with a small amount of fruit juice might do the trick and satisfy the child.

• Another suggestion is to mix familiar foods with new ones.
The child who likes white rice can learn to like brown rice as it is introduced little by little in combination with the old favorite.

• Involving the child in food preparation is another good idea.
A child who has helped prepare dinner is more likely to engage in eating what is served.

• Sometimes it is texture that creates the problem.
A child might not want to eat cooked carrots but is willing to eat fresh ones.

• Modeling is, of course, an issue.
Mom and Dad will need to evaluate their eating patterns.
Also, what’s available in the fridge and pantry? We allowed each of our boys to choose one food they NEVER had to eat. We also encouraged them to try new foods… just one bite and a “No thank you” if it didn’t make the cut.

You can hear Austin Hill’s chat with John and Kendra below:

The peril of the picky eater