Best to have real food before the age of five

Raised with real food in childhood one will most likely seek real food as an adult. This is my observation experiencing the food choices of my Italian adult friends. Unfortunately the industry is making headways into the youth diet that will have detrimental consequences  to them as adults.

It is up to parents to expose children before the age of 5 to quality foods. After 5 the environment, food industry, social media and the marketers become more influential than parents. By exposing them to a varied and healthy diet it helps them become a  neophile, willing to experience new foods and cultures. Otherwise they will become neophobics, eating  only what they are familiar with and missing out on exciting culinary experiences that is often more nutritious as well as more economical.

Some examples from our kitchen: eating snails from the yard, eating smelts head to tail from the sea, eating kale fresh from the garden, eating clams from the shell or eating pasta made with black squid ink. One of son Jason’s favorite was when his grandpa introduced him as a 5 year old to chicken feet, boiled to tenderness and dressed with good olive oil and herbs. As a father of two he continues to enjoy this culinary treat as when we surprised him on a visit to us.

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