Help! My toddler won't eat!

Rachel - posted on 05/11/2010 ( 12 moms have responded )

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I have a 2 year old toddler that is such a picky eater that he only takes a few bites at breakfast. He throws his lunch on the floor after I've prepared it without a lick, and dinner time he may eat a few cherrios if I'm lucky. He hasn't eaten anything (just nibbles and milk) for 2 days! I'm getting worried, he's already considered underweight for his age, and he's supposed to be gaining weight. The only thing he will eat is sweets, chocolate, cookies, etc. I don't know what to do, I feel like he's starving. He's in the "terrible two" stage I think that may have something to do with it, not taking things I offer. Does anyone else have this problem? Thanks for your reply!!!

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Amanda - posted on 05/11/2010

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if he likes sweets try to give him some yo-baby yogurt! Its sweet but also nutricious. My daughter is a VERY picky eater but she will eat yogurt whenever it is offered. They also make a juice that they sell at wal-mart that has both a serving of fruit and a serving of veggies. Its still sweet but atleast he will be gettin a serving of fruits and veggies! String cheese is also something my daughter LOVES! Hope this helps some!

Kimberlee - posted on 05/11/2010

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all of my kids went through this stage and their pediatrician said to just feed them alot of whatever they would eat, for me it was mac & cheese which is alot more healthy than sweets, this poses a problem, so my advice would be to find any type of real food that he will eat and feed him as much of that as you can have him eat, also ask his pediatrician if he is old enough to take a multi-vitamin. Hope that this helps you.

Dee - posted on 05/11/2010

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A child will not starve themselves. At two a child's growth slows down and they don't need as much food. You can only control what type of food you offer him. Don't let him control you by refusing to eat the food you offer, just take it away and offer it later or wait until he tells you he is hungry. Hungry children are more likely to eat what is offered.

Apps+8278986302 - posted on 05/11/2010

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I also have a 2yr old who is a picky eater. What I have found works best with my older ones and am trying with this one is, don't make sweets an option and keep it out of sight. Have fruit on hand. Also don't let your child have any milk for about 2 hours before a meal. Sometimes what I have to do is put the food on his high chair with him and just make myself busy for a few minutes and ignoring him and he will eat some things. Try to have certian times for food.

Best of luck to you.

Ashley - posted on 05/11/2010

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My daughter will be 3 at the end of the month and I'm running into this issues but i went and got lots of fruits and veggies and lunch meat and cheese and just make a bunch of snack during the day for her and i have other little healthy snack around for her and it seems to help.
My doctor told me that children wont let them selves go hungry she has her phases where she eats all the time and other times where she eats like nothing and i find that if the weather is changing a lot that it affects how much she eats.
Hope he starts to eat more for you!
Good luck Ashley

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Rachel - posted on 05/12/2010

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Thanks for your comments! My son tends to eat alot of cereal, at least he's getting a lot of fiber! He also does drink quite a bit of juice, my pediatrian said to only give him 2 cups of juice a day, but I get worried when he won't eat anything so I just squeeze some liquid mulivitamin into his juice and give it to him. I think I will try offering him food when ever he wants juice, maybe that's his way of saying he's hungry.

Sarah - posted on 05/11/2010

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My son used to be really fussy, I don't worry about it to much now. If he doesn't eat much for a few days, he usually balances it out over a week. Also if he will eat the yummy stuff like bikkies, you know he isn't feeling unwell, he's just holding out for the good stuff - stay strong, limit the junk food & eventually he will start eating some healthy options. My son still doesn't like lots of things, but he still gets a balanced diet & now he's at daycare a couple of days a week with lots of other kids, he often tries new things that he won't eat at home.

Jannine - posted on 05/11/2010

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don't panic. The best advice i ever got was that they will never starve themselves and that was from a dietician. My daughters were and one still is underweight by the books, etc however as small and petite as she is, she is happy and healthy and that is all that matters.

Brittany - posted on 05/11/2010

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My little guy just turned 2 in march...and he has eaten like that for a few months! He eats when he wants to (some days he eats everything on his plate, but most days I am doing good to get him to eat 3 bites). The doctors said they will eat when they are hungry. Just make sure you offer healthy food at every meal (and only sweets if he has eaten a good, healthy meal) and he should be fine!

Dee - posted on 05/11/2010

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The comment made about not offering milk before meals is true also juice, it gives them just enough calories that they are not hungry. Remember sweets are just empty calories and are not giving him enough nutrition.

Sandra - posted on 05/11/2010

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Please don't worry...with all the "toddler nutrition" articles going around, it's easy to panic. But kids will eat when they're hungry, and when growth spurts calm down, they may eat much less than they did before....Just feed him things that are healthy, and steer him away from "junk food" just because he likes it. Try naturally sweet foods, and take it from there. Your kiddo will be fine!

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Periodically, yes, I'd say if it lasts more than 4 days, call the doc. 2 days won't make that much of a dent into his weight, even tho I understand your concern over the weight issue. Some meals my 22 month old eats more than me (or so it seems) and other days (2 plus) he'll eat next to nothing! Good luck Rachel!

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