I read this article yesterday, which details a study done by the University of Minnesota showing that when children were served healthier school lunches, the sales did not decline. I found this to be encouraging and I hope it will be eye-opening to parents (it certainly was to me). I've always found it disturbing that children's menus at restaurants rarely have healthy options. At a local seafood restaurant we like to visit, the children's menu only has deep fried options. Before I had kids, I wondered if that was because children simply would not eat things that weren't breaded and fried. According to this study, that belief is false.
Obviously, children will eat fried foods if that's all that is offered to them. Those foods are immediately pleasing to the palate for most people. But if kids never try the fried stuff, they will be much more likely to try a fresh, healthy option when they are hungry. I know this is true, because I see my boys eating broiled and poached fish on a weekly basis.
As the article stated, it takes more work and costs more to prepare foods in a healthy way. But how encouraging to know that if the effort is made, children WILL eat the healthy stuff.