I have an 18 month old boy who does not want to eat food but does eat snacks, what should I do?

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Lacy - posted on 02/03/2011

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mine is the same way! wont eat that much food but when it comes to snacks it's like he's starving! i usuallu give him fruit and lunch stuff for snacks,i know lunch stuff arent that healthy but i think they sure beat chips and what not which he always wants too! i try make him try new foods also like oatmeal or cream of wheat but he doesnt like it! hopefully he grows out of it soon thou! he needs more food then snacks

Bonnie - posted on 01/28/2011

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Snacks are just as good as meals as long as they are on the healthier side. Nothing wrong with some treats here and there, but definitely don't want him to favour those and that be the reason he won't eat his meals.

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Toddlers have tiny stomachs-snacking is actually best for them. Just make sure what he's eating, whether you call it a meal or a snack is healthy food, and then just relax. He'll be eating a good diet, just a little at a time.

Beth - posted on 01/28/2011

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Somewhere I read that a snack should never be more than 1/4 (at most 1/3) of the amount of food that you give him at meal time, and that you shouldn't give more than one morning and one afternoon snack. I adjusted my daughter's snacks to be smaller (gradually) and she did start eating more at meals. There was some complaining, but she soon figured out that if she didn't eat the food I gave her, she would be hungry! It's not a huge deal what time kids are eating their foods, but you do want to start working on getting a good eating routine down. It sets him up for healthier eating in the long run...breakfast is important, don't skimp on it. Teaching him to eat meals rather than snacking all day will help avoid the problem of childhood obesity (and later, adult weight problems). But at the same time, if he's getting a balanced diet with fruits, veggies, whole grains, dairy, etc. I wouldn't stress out about whether it's in the form of a snack or a meal...just gradually make little changes to ease him into more routine eating habits.

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Offer him healthy snacks like whole grain crackers, cheese, yogurt, fruit, veggies w/ dip, etc.... and don't worry about him eating his 'meals'.

~♥Little Miss - posted on 01/28/2011

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I agree with Bonnie, snacks are as good as dinner...just feed healthy options.

~♥Little Miss - posted on 01/28/2011

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What are you giving as snacks? You can give healthy ones like cheese, yogurt, bananas...lots of stuff...but if he is getting filled up on crackers or chips, he isn't gonna want the good stuff.

Ashley - posted on 01/28/2011

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my kids are picky eaters to they arent much for sit down meals but they love snacking so just make sure what hes snacking on is healthy and no worries it passes

Karen - posted on 01/28/2011

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it's a phase i think all kids go through...just make sure you make the best of his snacks (while still offering him his meals). give him healthy snacks like fruit, yogurt, gerber toddler snacks are great (they're made with real veggies/fruits), cheese...he'll grow out of it eventually

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