Pleasing the Picky Eater

He insists his sandwiches be on white bread.

Heart shaped sandwiches

Monica Buck

What's the Big Deal? Whole-wheat flour has 25 percent more protein, 78 percent more fiber, and 93 percent more vitamin E than the refined kind used to make white sandwich bread. "The extra fiber helps prevent constipation in kids, and along with the protein will help them stay fuller," says Joanne Slavin, Ph.D., professor of food science and nutrition at the University of Minnesota in St. Paul. And the vitamin E? In a study of kids 8 to 13, those who ate whole grains were 54 percent less likely to have asthma -- possibly because whole grains have antioxidants like vitamin E that may prevent airway inflammation.

Work Around It: The government's Dietary Guidelines say only half of your kid's grain servings need to be whole. If he won't relinquish his favorite bread, balance it out with brown rice at dinner or whole-grain cereal for breakfast. "Try to get him used to the taste of whole wheat by making a 'zebra' with one slice of white bread and another of whole wheat," suggests Elisa Zied, R.D., author of Nutrition at Your Fingertips, and mom of two.

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