Kids who won't eat.

Amanda L - posted on 03/25/2010 ( 4 moms have responded )

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I have a 3 year old who won't eat anything besides cereal and chicken nuggets, all he wants is junk. When I say cereal I don't mean the baby cereal he ate as an infant, i mean sugary cereal like Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Cookie Crisp, Cocoa Pebbles, etc. He won't eat anything at all and won't try ANYTHING new, everything is yucky! He cries and screams for junk food constantly.And all he wants to drink is strawberry milk. I don't know what to do, I am at my wits end and so worried he may turn into a diabetic, it runs in both sides of my family. Doctors keep telling me this is normal and he will grow out of it, as long as he's healthy and not losing weight then he will be fine, well, I am not fine, I want my child to start to eat before he gets very sick. Does anyone have any tips for me or have any of you been through this and know anything I don't know?

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Toni - posted on 07/08/2010

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I understand where you are comming from. I have a 3 year old who is very tall and lean. He is very pickey and stubborn.

I try not to keep a lot of junk in the house except maybe a few things that he likes. If its not there he cant eat it. Then when we are eating dinner, I will tell him that if he eats just a few bites ( I usually will set a side the amount) then he can have a treat (desert). It doesnt always work but.... consistency is the key. They learn your limits very quickley and they will push you till you give. You have to put your foot down and stay consistent.

I know its hard because you want them to eat something but like others have said, they wont starve. They will get truley hungrey and eat what you give them.

Also, kids go through spurts. My son will have a few weeks here and there where he eats everything constantly, a growth spurt. This is the time to introduce new things. When they have a strong appetite and are ready to eat.

Good luck!!

Laurie - posted on 06/11/2010

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I agree - you need to get rid of the junk food - although strawberry milk is probably not too bad - so that the only choices are the healthy ones you want him to eat. Trust me he will not starve. My son likes to munch on dry multigrain cheerios, most kinds of sweet fruit (strawberries, grapes, watermelon, kiwi, bananas), pasta with or without any kind of sauce (usually catalina salad dressing) and cheese. Vegtables and meat are a harder sell but sometimes he will eat things with ground beef (chili) or on a bone (ribs, chicken legs). I think what the doctors are telling you is normal is that kids go though periods where they fixate on one or a couple foods and won't eat anything else. It tends to last for a few weeks at a time then they move on to a different food to fixate on. This is normal - but I also agree that it shouldn't be junk food. Keep trying with the new foods - at this age they can turn their noses up at a food one week, think it's great a few weeks later and then decide it's not so great after all. Since he likes chicken nuggets - see if you can get him to eat chicken that isn't breaded or that you bread with egg to hold it on and then bake in the oven so it is healthy (minimal grease).

Lashunda - posted on 04/23/2010

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My 2 year old only eats chicken nuggets, green beans and some junk foods but I rarely buy junk food cause I'm diabetic. He is not on his growth scale. I took him to a growth specialist and I told them he's very picky. The doctor told me to give him Pedia-sure. There are different flavors and they taste good (like ice cream). They will get the vitamin and mineral's they need when they don't eat. After so long he will gain a appetite. Danimals yogurt is good too. Try making fun finger foods or buy a kids cookbook and make his food look interesting with food coloring and cookie cutters. Good luck and don't give up.

Lyndsay - posted on 04/17/2010

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For one thing, if your doctors are telling you that this is okay you need to see someone else. While it is perfectly normal for toddlers to be picky about the foods they eat, eating nothing but junk food is a very unhealthy habit that is being perpetuated by you. Who does the grocery shopping? I'm guessing not your three year old, or at least it shouldn't be. If you aren't offering him those junk foods then he won't be eating them all the time. He's not going to starve. Eventually he will give in and eat what you are offering him.

A tip that works for me at supper time is to turn the TV off and not allow any toys until all his food is gone. If he's being a brat and doesn't want to eat I will say that's fine, but he's not playing with anything until he eats. He can wander around the room, he can sit with me and talk to me, but the moment he picks up a toy or tries to turn on the TV I will come intervene. Sometimes it takes awhile, but eventually he will want his toys back so he will agree to eat at least 5 bites.

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