A question I get asked time and time again.. how do I get my kids to take their supplements?? Yep, that is a tough one.. For me it was… let’s say… a “Battle Royale”… As many of you already know I was fairly convinced there were issues with my son from a young age… with this in mind I was seeing a Naturopath / Homeopath so he got used to taking things fairly early. Unlike Homeopathy, however, the herbs and supplements I use do have a taste to them so I had to find ways to get them into him.
Initially it was definitely a fight. I’m talking me putting the stuff in a syringe mixed with some sort of juice and then virtually sitting on him to make him take it… This in turn involved the majority of it being spat back out at me so clearly THAT strategy didn’t work.
Then there was putting it in his food, ever tried Weetbix with Fish Oil??? Me either…. But he did and yep, in case you’re wondering THAT didn’t work either!!
So we got creative and here’s what we tried.. download a copy of hints and tips here.
- For kids that don’t mind a fizzy drink take the powders with mineral water, the bubbles help to reduce the sweetness and for some kids it feels like a “treat”.
- Mix up the supplements into their favourite juice and freeze into ice cubes, 1 dose per cube. They can suck on this or add to a cup of water to have as a subtle flavouring.
- Put in a fun glass with a paper straw and get them to drink it, that way it will bypass the tastebuds at the front of the mouth.
- Mix into yogurt with some stewed fruit or mashed banana or vanilla essence, honey and cinnamon – this works particularly well for probiotics and probiotic powders
- Using a good quality gelatine make some jelly cups with their favourite juice or even a herbal tea, 1 dose per cup of jelly
- If your kids like a smoothie or milkshake mix into those
- For very young infants simply mixing with a small amount of water and using a pipette dispense near the back of their throat to avoid tastebuds.
- For herbal medicines these can be added to meals, they aren’t heat affected and generally can be easily disguised in a bowl of pasta
- For those, like my son who are used to taking their supplements via a syringe, simply mix into a glass of their favourite juice and syringe. It does go to the back of the mouth avoiding their tastebuds to an extent.
- Bribery is also an option for those that will negotiate, like my son.. I got to the point I took away the iPad with access only given when he did what I wanted him to do.. this meant he would take his supplements and in return he’d get 10 minutes on the iPad.
There’s obviously many more strategies you can employ and ultimately you know your child and what’s going to motivate them the most. The one thing to ultimately remember is you’re only doing this in their best interest so be persistent and even though some days it seems near impossible, tomorrow is always a new day.
Until next time..