Marks & Spencer's Christmas sausages are made from... Brussels sprouts

But are they the best way to get kids to eat veg?

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Can a sausage count as one of your five a day? It can, it seems, if it's a Marks & Spencer Christmas special.

The supermarket has unveiled a sampling of its festive menu for this year, including a sausage made from Brussels sprouts and targeted at veg-shy children.

The company tells the Mirror that it's taken a year to get the recipe right so that the sausage looks like the real thing.

"It's a great way to sneak this Christmas dinner must-have onto the plates of sprout avoiders," says a spokesperson.

And sprouts also pop up in another unexpected form - as Brusslesmole, a British take on the classic Mexican dip guacamole, made with sprouts instead of avocado.

Sausages made of the rather more traditional meat are also included in the range - though they're shaped like Christmas trees. There's a quiche containing turkey and all the trimmings, and crisps made with Prosecco and sprinkled with pink glitter that fizz on the tongue.

New drinks include Mince Pie Martini, a White Christmas Cocktail made with yogurt liqueur, vanilla, rum and citrus and Parsnip in a Pear Tree Juice.

Supermarkets are increasingly trying to find ways to encourage children to eat their greens - Asda, for example, recently introduced a red-and-yellow striped pepper in the hope that it would be more appealing.

Late last year, McDonalds admitted having gone even further, testing out a bubblegum flavoured broccoli.

However, research published this week shows that it's surprisingly easy for parents to put a stop to fussy eating by following three simple steps - the 'three Rs', say the researchers, from Aston and Loughborough universities.

These are Repetition: repeatedly exposing a child to a certain food; Role modelling, or eating it first and showing them how tasty it is; and Reward, or praising them for trying it.

"It can be very challenging for families to encourage their children to eat a healthy, balanced diet as children naturally go through stages during their toddler years when they are often fussy and will refuse new foods, particularly vegetables. This is a normal developmental stage for children, but it can often lead to a restricted diet as children become fussier and fussier about what they will not eat," says Dr Claire Farrow, of the Aston Research Centre for Child Health.

"Eating behaviours have been shown to track throughout childhood and into adulthood – so it is vitally important that children are exposed to fruits and vegetables early in life to inform healthy eating as they grow into adolescence and adulthood."

Scientists Say You Really Can Get Kids To Like Veggies


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