CHILDREN refusing to eat their vegetables may be a nightly occurrence for a lot of parents, but there may be a simple answer to getting the greens down their throats.
How about a vegie garden?
Research into how growing your own food can influence your diet will be one of the hot topics being presented by Australian nutrition experts next month in Sydney.
And the effects of home and school vegie gardens are also being felt in Mackay.
Fitzgerald State School Year 3 students got a taste - literally - of some fresh rocket pulled from ground when they visited Mackay's community garden yesterday.
Lucie Sippel said she had her own garden at home where she grows tomatoes, thyme and basil.
She said she liked eating tomatoes because they tasted "yummy" when plucked straight off the bush.
Classmate Sophia Sticklan is also planning on growing her own garden.
"We'll be growing some vegetables: basil, parsley, lettuce, carrots and tomatoes," she said.
Her favourite is tomatoes and carrots but she's also excited about the nice-smelling greens.
"We need some parsley and basil for dinners."
Australian nutritionist Dr Rosemary Stanton said preaching about the virtues of vegetables was useless.
Instead, she said we should be encouraging children to grow their own vegetables to eat.
"School kitchen gardens, where kids grow vegies and herbs and learn how to prepare them and enjoy them, has led to both children and adults eating more vegetables," she said.
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