Eating habits

Davenia - posted on 05/01/2010 ( 37 moms have responded )

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My son used to eat everything. I would give him vegetables, meat, salad, cereal, etc. and he would eat it all. Now he will not eat anything. He spits stuff out, throws it on the floor, and tries to hide from his food. The doctor said it is normal for kids to change their eating habits, but by this much. I've tried different types of food and for the most part he only wants pizza or spaghetti. Has anyone ever gone through this? If you have what did you do?

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Jennifer - posted on 05/04/2010

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my son is not like that but my lil sister was my mom and dad gave in to her let her eat what she wanted at first it wasnt bad but now my sis is 11 (sorry just to let u know were almost 10yrs apart) all she will eat at home is stuff like chicken nuggets, pizza rolls, corn dogs...etc she wont eat hardly any vegietables or fruit or it has to be fresh like strawberries etc...she wont eat any good home cooked meals and she use to make my grandma cry saying she didnt want to eat her food when we went over to see her which was really sad...i say is dont give in by givng them as i say junk food keep trying diff things and if they dont want it then dont give them any snacks and keep trying to give them their meals you cook

Nickelle - posted on 05/12/2010

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I am going through the Exact same thing. My daughter would eat every healty food I gave her. Now though she wants Mac n cheese. I just keep repeatedly offering the things I want her to eat and hope she will come around sooner than later. It is very frustrating cooking or preparing numerous food items and being turned down. Right now I am pureeing veggies and mixing in the food she wants. Also another thing I did is I got a juicer and am combining veggies and fruits to make juices with all of the nutrients and none of the sugar. I also mix this with yogurt and make smoothies and freeze it in ice cube trays and make "Popsicle".

Lori - posted on 05/08/2010

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Sounds like my situation as well. Lorna used to eat everything, but now she likes mainly carbs. Pasta, pizza, potatoes, etc. I found a few tricky ways to get some veggies in her diet. When I make mashed potatoes, I cook half a head of cauliflower till it is really soft, and add it to the cooked potatoes. She loves it. I've done this with broccoli as well. As long as she can taste the potatoes, it doesn't seem to matter what I add in. I also puree several veggies for pizza sauce. I never actually use sauce. I throw tomatoes and whatever else I have handy into a blender with some olive oil and a little salt and pepper until it looks like a pesto. Spread it on a Tandori style Naan flatbread (whole wheat) and top with some low fat cheese. Both my kids love it. My son actually will not eat any other pizza. Good Luck!

Pamela - posted on 05/03/2010

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I think the more options you give him, the more he'll be choosy :D My baby eats almost everything I give him (as long as it's not sour) but I prefer to give him veggies & fruits. If he opt not to eat them, I won't give him an alternative so he'll get hungry in a little while and eat whatever I serve him :D

[deleted account]

Our daughter has been doing that a lot lately too. We've tried giving her vegetables first and then if she eats all of those she'll get some bread or something like that. That way the only thing on her plate to start with are the good things. But we've also decided to be a little tougher with her and her eating habits. Not as many snacks throughout the day so that she's hungrier for meals and if she flat out refuses to eat her vegetables or whatever we're serving her then she has to wait until the next meal. It sounds kind of harsh, but she totally knows how to cry and whine for something she wants, so we're trying to stop that habit now before she gets older. Hope that helps.

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Carrie - posted on 06/01/2010

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my boy is 21 month now and just this last week has decided he doesnt want to eat..he can go all day just on a banana whitch carnt be good.i put him in his high chair at meal time as i have done from the start but hes just started swiping his food off the tray.this is very stressfull as well as me having to hoover 5times aday im woundering why hes not eating?people say he will eat when he wants to but surley this is not good nutrition.any advice..

Jacqui - posted on 05/18/2010

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My daughter will only eat her vegies if they're covered in her grandmas cheese sauce at the moment, every now and again she 'll eat a little without. Persevere and he will be eating food again soon

Nicole - posted on 05/17/2010

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my 3 and a half year old son will touch nothing with green or orange in it. it's like he can smell everything mashed into the food, or pureed. he used to eat everything, like most children, i myself don't ever have chips or cookies, or sugary things in my house, but along with the control he wants at meal times, legitimately, some children really don't like the food. I have been on and off relaxed about what he eats, when we are low on food, he has no choice, he either goes hungry or he eats it, but but without making himself puke it up first. from what i have learned through a parenting course, it is normal for a child to take control by refusing or accepting to eat, it worries us as parents of whether they will grow and are getting proper nourishment, but, naturally, the body knows what nutrients it needs, a child will eat whole bunches of one thing, and nothing of another, but then another day it will be lots of another but nothing of what they ate the other day, as the days progress, they are getting mass nutrients in one food item or another, equally out by the end of the week or so. but don't forget to continue giving small portions of each food group at mealtimes, so they don't get used to just eating certain things, that was my mistake, he stopped eating carrots, because i wouldn't feed them to him for a week, hoping he would eat it next time, i didn't want food wastage, but in the end, it created a problem, of now no carrots. also, if my son doesn't eat it for dinner, he gets it for breakfast, simple as that. we make sure it is things he decently likes, but may not always eat, but refusal and control of a 3 year can be difficult to work with. I also find, having him around children slightly older than him who do eat veggies and other such foods he apparently can't stand, can make him do wondrous things, like eat that broccoli because his friend likes it.

I hope any of these suggestions may help, and remember, over the week, they still manage to get the nutrients they need from one thing or another.

Amy - posted on 05/17/2010

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yes, we are going through it now, its normal.....try puree carrots in spagetti sauce and veggie pizza. you can mke fruit smoothies or banan penut butter milkshakes for desert. offer healthy foods and he will decide when to eat

Teagan - posted on 05/16/2010

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my son is like this too but his been eating anything that is meat lol so what ive been doing is making things such as rissoles and grating carrot in it or spaghetti and adding veggies to it and he doesn't know the difference lol or I make stuff that I know he will eat eg bananas, grapes, mash potato, sweet potato, sandwiches, rissoles, spaghetti etc. I'm not too worried cause I know that the nutrients and vitamins that he needs, he does get threw different foods. They usually suggest veggies and fruit cause you get the nutrients and vitamins quicker but other foods have the same it just takes a little longer. I know when his a little older he will eat everything again. so I wouldn't worry to much its just a stage they go threw.

Jael - posted on 05/15/2010

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My daughter wouldn't drink milk for awhile and usually she turns down a lot of vegetables even though she loved them just a few months ago. She still eats a pretty balanced diet though so I am content enough. Also she wants to eat whatever I am eating. She might see me eating something she doesn't like and want some and then only eat a few bites but a few bites is better than nothing. Also she gets tired of some foods after awhile so if I have given her chicken too much she will refuse to eat it. But If I switch between foods and just give her small amounts of a lot of things then she can pick what she wants to eat. Also if your child eats pizza get supreme or Hawiian. It may not be the healthiest but at least they cover most of the food groups.

Brittany - posted on 05/15/2010

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Hi my son is 20 months old , and he too used to eat anything and everything i put in front of him. Now he wants pizza spagetti and chips! His doctor said its perfectly normal their eating habits change on a daily basis, and if they are reallly hungry they will eat what you give them instead of being picky. They also said about the spitting the food on the floor is also normal , and if they do not eat when you feed them let them get up from the table and do their own thing, they will let you know when they are really hungry.

Jessica - posted on 05/14/2010

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oh, and i also feel less guilty buying or making the healthier version of junk food (like getting her "cheese curls" from the health food/organic section-it's made with real cheddar, corn, baked not fried, no trans fats, etc)

then when i give it to her, i've already divided into small portions, so she doesn't see more, and i try to let it go-she is growing & gaining weight & developing well...but it's so easy to worry when they go from eating well to not much at all

Jessica - posted on 05/14/2010

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I'm glad I'm in good company with many other:

i have a hard time getting my 20 mo old daughter Jordan to eat many of the healthy foods that i want her to eat. she loves fruit, thankfully, and almost any cheese, but other than that wants pasta, gummy snacks with sugar, cheese curls, etc.

it sometimes helps if when she is hungry i offer her two choices only of the type of food i want her to eat-but only sometimes

she still won't eat meat regularly, besides hot dogs (i like eating them too, but they feel like such a guilty pleasure)-so i will chop up meat/veggies, adding them to other foods like pasta that she likes (i started out pureeing them, then finely chopping, which once she gets used to the new texture she seems ok most of the time-i am hoping eventually she will be used to the "normal texture" of good food, and won't balk).

all this makes me feel better about the "indulgences" at daddies/grandparents/babysitters hands

I've tried to only eat in front of her the foods i want her to eat, and either hide or just don't buy foods i don't want in her daily diet, still giving an occasional treat after she eats the healthier stuff, but in smaller portions-am afraid she will go the exact opposite way when she gets older, and only eat fried/junk food if i push too hard



but, i have hope, my brother (8 yrs younger than me), used to only eat hot dogs, speghetti o's, pb & j, & cinnamon/sugar toast-and he is now a healthy 19 yr old who eats everything, healthy or not. also, my youngest sister (12 yrs younger) used to be even pickier, and indulged even more since she is the baby, is now a very healthy 16 yr old vegetarian in awesome health, is now a healthy weight, & has alot more energy than ever before (her dr was skeptical about the vegatrian thing, but she takes vitamins, eats "real" not processed foods, plenty of iron rich and protein foods, etc). good luck to all us frustrated moms

Monica - posted on 05/14/2010

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Same at our house. Our 20 mo old used to eat whatever we were eating (salad excepted), now all he wants is chips, bread, cookies (which I don't generally give him), crackers, cheese (sometimes), fruit, weetbix and yoghurt. So lots of carbs and fruit and dairy. We've managed to get him to eat a little meat recently (chicken kebab on a skewer, pork ribs, and lamb cutlets - ie meat on a stick). But veges are now not tolerated unless disguised in baking. One of his favourites though is Mama's pancakes (egg, wholewheat flour, a little milk and lots of grated carrot), but he won't touch carrot otherwise. We've been a bit lenient on him because he was teething and we could understand him wanting softer foods (yoghurt and fruit) but now that's finished we're going to start getting tough. THere have been some showdowns. The tricky part is when we're out (once a week) or at grandparents or aunty's and it's harder to enforce. If he sees anything that's a favourite (especially chips or bread or cookies) at the table or at a nearby table, he utterly refuses anything except that. Very frustrating. I don't want to have to keep him in at home for every meal!

Julie - posted on 05/14/2010

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I am going through the same thing. Mine will only eat mac. and cheese and bananas and thats about it, feel bad only feeding her that, if I give her anything else she refuses it. I feel better hearing others are having the same problem. Nothing works to get to eat anything else.

Judy - posted on 05/14/2010

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My daughter is 20 mo old and her eating habits have change drastically, but I attribute it all to teething. She use to eat everything. Now it is mostly milk, apple juice, strawberries, peaches, oatmeal and eggs. I'm happy when I can get her to eat some mac & cheese and even some chicken.

I try not to stress too much about it because everyone tells me that if/when she is hungry, she will eat.

Carey - posted on 05/14/2010

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tell me about it!!! This is so frustrating! My son used to eat anything and now he turns his nose up to almost everything I offer him. I am now giving him vitamins to make up for it. I cannot wait for this new endevor to end. Hope it doesnt take long.

[deleted account]

My son has done the same thing! He goes through goofy phases... often lasting a month even! Don't worry - it'll pass. My son also went through the "snacks!!" phase... only wanting crackers, etc. I had to offer him choices of only healthy stuff. He fussed, but got over it pretty quicky and is back to cheese and strawberries... for now at least!

Terri - posted on 05/12/2010

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Same deal here. My son used to eat EVERYTHING I put in front of him (at times I had to watch my fingers). Now, if I can actually get him to put a piece of broccoli in his mouth it spends approx 0.3 seconds on his tongue before he spits it out! Thankfully there isn't a lot of "junk" food around the house or a the sitter's house so pretty much the worst foods that he eats (and loves) are pizza and take out mexican. He does however love juice of any kind and my local juice shop has a "veggie extreme" that includes carrot, apple, spinach, celery, lemon, lime, ginger and option of beets. It may sound gross but it tastes wonderful and he loves it. Probably doesn't hurt that it was my craving while pregnant with him. I hate to say it but, if they get hungry enough they'll eat what is offered to them when it is offered (I sound like my mother!). Keep trying!

[deleted account]

I second Jennifer Ebert - my "baby" sisters are teens now, much younger than me. My mom got lax with her menus with them, more junk, less real food, compared to how she was when my bro and I were growing up. I see how picky my sisters continue to be, not adventurous at all, definitely not enough vegetables in their diet. My 19-mo-old is becoming extremely picky himself, but I'm going to keep trying to believe that 12-exposures-before-they-like-it advice! Then maybe he won't say "Ew" to every veg when he is practically a grownup. Keep trying to present healthy foods in different ways - maybe roast the carrot if he hates it steamed, that kinda thing. It's so tough, but it's worth it.

Leila - posted on 05/11/2010

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My daughter started doing the same thing. Apparently they know what they need. What I do is the same as Michelle, let her make small choices. She also gets a little variety of foods, like strawberries, a mini waffle and cereal for breakfast. I also let her have her milk after the meal, so she doesn't just fill up with milk.

Good luck :)

Catherine - posted on 05/11/2010

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My 19mth old is in this stage as well. I have resorted ot supplementing his diet with Pediasure & Carnation Instant Breakfast drinks. I also give him a multi vitamin everyday. I have been told that this is just a stage that they go through and if you give them healthy choices most of the time, its OK to let them eat some of the junky stuff they cry & beg for. On a typical day my son will start off with 1/2 of a Pop Tart & a cup of whole milk with 1 Tbs of the instant breakfast mix in it and a wedge of apple. His lunch is usually at daycare and for dinner he will usually only eat some sort of noodle (whole wheat in our house) and chicken or a beef hot dog. I have learned to go with the flow. As long as he is healthy and gaining weigh & developmentally on target, I'm happy.

Nina - posted on 05/11/2010

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sometimes my son wont eat at all, and i get so worried then other days he will eat everything in sight !!, im hoping its just a phaze that they go through.

April - posted on 05/11/2010

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Sorry to respond this way but what a relief it is for me that my son isn't the only one who is so picky with food and spits or throws his food on the floor and all over the table when we try to coax him to eat a little more! What he agrees to eat now, I can count on one hand; fried chicken/nuggets, fries, fish balls, fruits and sometimes vegetables. Of course, he would happily snacked on selected biscuits, chocolates and gummies! At mealtimes, he prefers to drink whatever we are drinking! I've tried not giving him liquids at meals and even forgo drinking at the dinner table but he would ask for them. I asked his doctor about it and was just told that he will eat when he's hungry and there's no way to force a toddler to eat. So now, I just sighed quietly when he acts like that, try one alternative when the first food doesn't work and gives him his milk.

Michelle - posted on 05/10/2010

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My oldest started getting picky so I started letting him help decide once in a while. Just small choices. Like do you want banana or apple with lunch? That sort of thing. He feels like a big boy when he gets to help make the choices but I limit him to the things I want him to eat. He even helps by deciding things like what vegetable to have with dinner or what cereal to have in the morning. I read that children want a little bit of control and refusing to eat is one of the ways to get that but that if they are given that control in other ways like making small decisions that they are less likely to act out. My youngest gets to make some decisions also and I have yet to have him refuse food.

Good luck.

Dianna - posted on 05/10/2010

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My daughter is the same way!! The only things that are allowed to cross her lips now are fruits, raw veggies and pasta. She absolutely refuses to eat anything else. At first I was super worried, now everyone is telling me that it is completely normal...so I feel much better about it. I just keep on giving her small portions of other things, but we always have a stock pile of fruits and veggies ready for her!!!

Kaitlin - posted on 05/10/2010

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I have found that if I give my son something undesirable (eggs, meat, veggies) first without any other choices then he eats it better. If I give him stuff all together he will only eat what he wants and leave the rest.

Annemaria - posted on 05/10/2010

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I am experiencing the same thing with my son. He loved everything but now just like your son he spits out food, throws it on the floor and only will pick at things unless he really likes it. I have no help here. Just been giving him more meals in smaller portions and keeping lots of his favorite foods around because I never know what he is going to want to eat.

Jeanette - posted on 05/10/2010

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i havent gone through it cuz im in the same situation right now. my daughter wont eat all she will eat is junk food. if i take it away she will start cryin &i hate it because she just wants that she wont eat regular heathy food i serve. my mom tells me the same thing that they go through a stage where they just dont want to eat at all. but if u have any way u can help please let me know. im so sorry that i cant really give u advice but i understand u because its hard for us.

Bobbi - posted on 05/09/2010

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Hello, I caught a glimpse of your post and felt I needed to chime in for the sake of a sane mind :)

My son used to eat everything I fed him as well, now he spits things out that have skin (corn, peas, green beans). He manages to eat the middles out (how he manages to get anything out of the middle of a kernal of corn is beyond me but he does it).

He won't eat meat either, just pastas and fruits like bananas or the diced up apples you get in jars from Gerber.

The tricks I have used are finely chopping meat so it is hardly recognizable in a meal (I use a mini food processor since I want chunks of meat in my food :P). He gobbles up his goolosh like it was nobody's business and because I mixed the meat in with his favorite food in the world we both won.

I also went back to certain baby foods, peas and green beans just to make sure he is getting those nutrients. It would also work to make your own with canned green beans and peas by using a food processor and mixing in a bit of water.

Hope this helps you out a bit :)

Alix - posted on 05/09/2010

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My little girl is the same used to eat everything and now i worry so much as she just wants chips.I feel its best to let her have them as she will be hungry.
She runs around all day but never seems to be hungey PLEASE HELP

Davenia - posted on 05/05/2010

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Thanks everyone! I was beginning to feel like I was alone in this. It is kind of stressful when I make something to eat for him and he will not even eat it. I will continue to stand my ground and try to get him to eat things other than cereal and pizza. :)

Jenny - posted on 05/04/2010

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My daughter has been changing her eating habits too. I try good stuff, but she doesn't go for it. The best thing is that as many carbs that she eats, she still loves to have a banana in the morning.
I agree that some of it has to be a control thing. She likes to snitch stuff off our plates, even veggies, when we're out to eat. But if we try to give the same thing to her at home, she won't touch it. Kids can be so fickle!

Angela - posted on 05/02/2010

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My son has done the same. Now all he wants is pasta, meatballs, pizza (not the crust, haha) & Tyson chicken. I was told is completely normal. I think it's their way of having a little control in their own lives. There's not a lot that they can control except eating.

Caryn - posted on 05/02/2010

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My son is the same way. He used to eat whatever we gave him. Now he eats pizza, cereal, bananas, and crackers. Sometimes he'll eat other stuff, but I feel like he mostly eats carbs. I think it is normal. We just keep offering him small portions of everything and hope he'll start eating it again soon. Good luck!!! Don't give up!

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