My 3 year old boy hardly eat's, Is this normal?

Katrina - posted on 01/21/2009 ( 36 moms have responded )

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When he get's up I make him his breakfast, try and let him eat eggs, toast, noodles anything just so he can eat. He has been refusing to eat for the past 4-5 months now. He will only have maybe a bowl of noodles every couple of days. I am getting very worried. I have consulted a doctor but he says theres nothing he can do about it.

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Karen - posted on 12/26/2011

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My daughter is now 4 years old and we have been having issues since she was 2. It goes in spurts:eating well to not so well. She hardly ever finishes a meal(very small size). What do I do??

Denise - posted on 01/22/2009

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If he drinks milk all day then he won't get hungry. Milk is really a solid and fills up there stomach. It turns in to cottage cheese in the stomach. I'm surprised he's not constipated? Is he?

User - posted on 01/21/2009

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Sugar Plum!  Is this your first baby?  I could be so wrong, but I'm guessing that it is.  If your son does not want to eat, do not worry about it..  He'll eat when he's hungry.   ESPECIALLY if your doctor said don't sweat it.   Honey DO NOT become a short order cook for him, because he will expect that of you all the time.  He eats what you cook and if he doesn't want it, then he doesn't eat.  Trust me Sugar Plum.  I'm a mom of three little ones and I don't play that mess.  When they're hungry, they'll eat broccoli like it's icecream.....smile.  Your baby is fine, don't pressure him.

Stacey - posted on 01/21/2009

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My daughter is 3 1/2 and she literally never ever ate. I tried EVERYTHING, and eventually realized there was nothing I could do but faithfully cook meals 3x a day and serve them. I always took her in for her check-ups and she actually fell off the percentile (for her age graph) she weighed so little. My pediatrician asked if she got tired, or winded, or had no energy or slept a lot. She is and has always been a firecracker.



AND THEN 2 months ago she just started eating and eating and eating. I don't even say anything I just prepare whatever she wants whenever she wants. Sometimes she has 2 dinners now. Huge growth spurt and she looks so fantastic with a little pot belly.



If they're healthy, they'll eat when they're good and ready. Good luck I know how stressful it is, mealtimes were a nightmare at our house for nearly 3 years!

[deleted account]

3 year olds are finding their 'power' and importance. Sounds like he knows he's got you on the hop (attention) and is using this. Change how you approach 'food' - laugh, make it a game, involve him in preparation (get food from fridge etc) Don't react if he doesn't eat, get him to help clear it away. Overtly praise him when he does eat or try something new. Bribery sets up bad habits. Be consistent and believe he'll get it together soon! I am a Kinder teacher so see lots of eating habits.

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Amanda - posted on 01/22/2009

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I think this happens with all kids, it did with us and I have 3. My doctor told me that as long as you give them choices, they will eat enough to keep them healthy, just make sure to give them vitamins. Its amazing when the pressure is off how much they really do eat.

Katrina - posted on 01/21/2009

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Thank You All For Your Help! I Find This Circle Of Moms A Very Big Help!
I Hope That This Stage Doesn't Last Very Long. He's A Pretty Big Boy Weighing 45lbs.
He Drink's Milk All Day! Won't Have Any Juice Just Milk & Nutri-Grain Bars He Loves Those. I Have Tried Veggies But He Wouldn't Touch Those. So I Guess Time Will Tell.

AGAIN THANKS

[deleted account]

Perfectly normal...and the more you try to get him to eat the more he will resist...all that attention from Mummy!!!!!Offer him food 6 times a day and if he refuses drop the subject. He will eat when he is hungary....or when he figures out he no longer has powerr over mummy anymore!

Jessica - posted on 01/21/2009

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my 2 1/2 year old is doing that right now. but as long as they eat something during the day you shouldn't worry.i give my daughter almost anything that she might like to eat except junk food just to make sure she eats something and pediasure before the day is done for some extra vitamins.

Natasha - posted on 01/21/2009

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i woud recommend that you give him vitamins if he is not already taking them. My girl was like that and i went to the health food store and the guy there recommended seven seas multivitamin with cod liver oil i'm not to sure where u are but i live in Brooklyn, NY. If you can get it please try it . good luck

User - posted on 01/21/2009

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my 21/2 year old goes through this also.  the dr said as long as isn't losing weight not to worry.  i just worry about the lack of vegetables.  i know that he gets plenty of protein from milk and cheese.  I started letting him choose what he wants to eat for breakfast.  cereal, eggs, pancakes etc and this has helped. 

Alice - posted on 01/21/2009

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Try a book by Ellyn Satter.



Child of Mine; Feeding With Love and Good Sense



It talks about ages & stages as well as power struggles w/your child.

Denise - posted on 01/21/2009

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Is he scared to eat? Did he have something happen, like an allergic reaction?  Or is He  just controlling something? My son had a very ruff time around 9 years old and wouldn't eat because he was afraid it could make him sick and die. I took him to a Homepathic Doctor. homeopathic.org



It saved his life. Call them and learn more about it today.

[deleted account]

my cousin is going through the same thing and her doctor said as long as he was running around and looks healthy then it should be ok as long as she is giving him his vitamin and he is drinking

Connie - posted on 01/21/2009

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Hi, my son is 7 years old now and still eats very little. The doctor says he is in good health and doing great. I used to worry myself to death thinking that he was going to starve but when he gets hungry he lets me know. Hang in there..

Sara - posted on 01/21/2009

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I used to give my son oatmeal. I called it an oatmeal shake. I think he liked it just because I called it a shake. It was warm with vanilla maple syrup and 8 ounces of milk. Just thick enough to go through a straw.

Stef - posted on 01/21/2009

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hi there i know what its like to have a fussy eater as my son went through the same thing and still does, hes 9 now and all he would eat is anything white like pasta,rice noodles without the green bits(herbs) and all his food is dry,he wont have any type of sauce. hes slowly getting better in trying new foods but its down to persieverance, finding out what he likes and making it fun for him. have you tried taste test with him, it works wonders.try 3 new things blinfolded to see if he likes them, then build up to more foods and let him try it on you. i wouldnt worry to much as long as he grows well,take a multi vitamin and reward him with say a sticker chart,say so many stickers in a month for a big treat and it could involve something he likes or a trip to the park. good luck and i hope all goes well ;0)

Sarah - posted on 01/21/2009

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i would ask to see a dietian. You could have a sticker cart to try and encourge him to eat..x

Lynne - posted on 01/21/2009

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Don't worry, as you could see from all the replies you are not alone. My son who is 2 and a 1/2 is also very picky and has always been. I find he goes thrue stages, one week he loves pasta the next pizza. I just always try to give him what ever he likes so that he gets something in there. My family doctor keeps telling not to worry about it and that it's normal, so until the doctor tells me that there's something wrong I won't worry about it to much.

Veronica - posted on 01/21/2009

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Our peditrician (who we've known since we were kids) says, kids will not allow themselves to starve to death. They eat when they need to and not because of structured times that adults say so. If more adults ate the way kids do (only when hungry and just enough to satiate their hunger) obesity or just simply being overweight would not be an issue for any of us.

If he likes to drink a lot, then make sure he has a drink that is high in nutrition like pediasure. A liquid vitamin might also be a good idea.

Jen - posted on 01/21/2009

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I'm going through that with my 3 1/2 year old, too.  He takes FOREVER to eat some weeks...if he hardly eats anything at all.  But then he'll go through a phase where he'll eat a couple of helpings....he's very thin (about 30 lbs) but has always been small for his age.  As long as they are healthy, then I wouldn't worry about it.  Make sure you ask your pediatrician if you think your son isn't getting the proper nutrition....he/she may recommend something like Pediasure or something to get additional calories and nutrients.  Hope this helps!

Anne Marie - posted on 01/21/2009

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Also, maybe you want to consult with a Nutritionist or Feeding Therapist just to make sure there aren't any nutrtional issues. I found Dr.s were not helpful with the eating issues and got more out of the feeding therapy. My daughter will turn 4 next month and has made tremendous progress with eating a variety of foods, though we still are working on some things.

Juliana - posted on 01/21/2009

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My daughter was about 2 when she went through a stage of not eating much at all. I took her to the doctor who assured me that she was getting what she needed and that in time her appetite would improve. It did. The doctor said as long as she had energy and wasn't lethargic there was no cause for any worry.

Carrie - posted on 01/21/2009

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Does he have a lot of energy? My 3 year old is the same way, but he has so much energy. I don't know where it comes from. He just picks at his meals. My 2 older girls were the same way. It might just be the age.

Mary - posted on 01/21/2009

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it is normal. as long that he drinks a lot give him milk be for he gose to bed. in that way he is gettin some nourshment in him. add some milkshake. or get some complan for him. its a builds up. hope this helps. ?

User - posted on 01/21/2009

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Try leaving things out that he can munch on vegetable sliced up neat with dip even a yogurt based dip fruit sliced up crackers multigrain cherrios so when he walks by he will munch. He wont starve . Um what about juice and milk does he get theat first thing in the morning if so limit it just a little if he eats his breakfast let him choose and help. LOL might get messy but its fun for them. This worked for me hope it works for you

Anne Marie - posted on 01/21/2009

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. My daughter had some developmental delays and eating was a big issue. You can try pediasure as a supplement.  Also, maybe have him help you prepare for dinner-set the table, stir something, etc.  IMy daughter went through feeding therapy- we worked on having her touch the food, play with it- texture, etc. I have some guidleines I will check for you and write back if I find any more tips.

Kelly - posted on 01/21/2009

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That does sound worrisome! My three year old has slowed way down on eating also (I can always tell when a growth spurt is coming up, they really do eat a lot more sometimes than others), but not to the extent you describe. It seems like the doctor would be concerned if he isn't growing enough, so hopefully that is not happening. I think just a couple of suggestions would be first, I would make sure he takes a vitamin every day (my kids love the gummi kind), and secondly, would he maybe drink some sort of drink like Ensure? Maybe that would get some sustenance in him, although they probably would be expensive long term. Another thing I would wonder about, is he getting enough fluids? Is he "pottying" ok? I for sure would not get into any habit of offering him junk food just to get him to eat though (not that it sounds like that is what you are doing). One other idea, sometimes kids like things they help make. Even if he makes a huge mess, would he eat like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich if he put it together himself? Some other things he could help with and might like would be mini-pizzas, fruit he could "dip" in something, or my older daughter's favorite food when she was that age, applesauce that she would put raisins into, so she could control how many.

User - posted on 01/21/2009

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couple of things to think about. are you trying to feed him with the tv on? does he eat at the table with everyone else? do you have him stay at the table until everyone is done? (don't force him to eat though) if not eating give him carnation instant breakfast for a meal. kids love it and it has all the nutrients they need. when my daughter went thru this it was the only thing she would have.

Mary - posted on 01/21/2009

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My 3-year-old is the same way! He is very picky with what he eats. I am trying to work with him on eating proper foods. I don't make him eat what he don't want but I offer him things.

User - posted on 01/21/2009

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hi my daughter was the same as your son at about the same age- she would eat nothing but yogarts for weeks, i gave her some of the milk you can buy over the counter at the chemist just to see her through shes now 9 and although still a fussy eatter she does seem to grow. good luck

Allison - posted on 01/21/2009

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I have a four and a half year old that is also very fussy. He only eats sandwiches and occasionally yoghurt. We have been to paediatric dieticians, doctors etc etc. We are perservering. I give him floradix which is an iron supplement after a blood test confirmed he had no iron levels (no red meat or vegies), a multivitamin and pediasure, a milk based powder full of everything they need. I also make him a milkshake with an egg in it for protein. For now this seems to be what we do, and he is growing well, developing perfectly normally etc. Doesn't stop the worrying though. The doctors said he has an accute gag reflex which is why he wasn't keen on eating much. When he was younger he had tactile tolerance issues - getting his hands dirty, touching sand, mud etc. We worked on this and whilst he's not out playing in the mud he tolerates this better. He is eating some junk - nuggets & chips, so I am now making him eat pasta spirals and introducing a vegetable and fruit, so far he is eating two matchsticks of carrot and three bites of watermelon. Not a lot, but certainly a start. Basically, if you want a treat, you have to eat all of that first. He is also a year or so older than your boy and more able to comprehend.....

Good luck, hang in there, and don't be down on yourself. There are not many 20 year olds out there only eating noodles three times a week, so we should be ok!!

Lyndsay - posted on 01/21/2009

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My daughter does the same thing. She is 2 1/2 and she always picks at her food. She will hardly eat any meal. She seem to be growing fine but it worries me that I am not giving her what she needs.

Ashley - posted on 01/21/2009

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Dont worry bout it babe, my daughter barley eats anything, and her doctor says that shes just fine

Patty - posted on 01/21/2009

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Hi, my name is Patty and when my son was small he would barely eat as well.  But the doctors told me over and over that they get the nutrition that they need.  But I would not worry because my son is now 14 years old about 5 foot 9 inches and weighs 190lbs.  So don't worry your son will grow out of this fussy stage.  Good Luck



Patty

[deleted account]

My 3 1/2 year old went through the same stage and of course, I also worried.  All he wanted was milk and cheese.  I also consulted a doctor who said to just keep on motivating him to eat and to give him a multivitamin everyday.  He is much better now and i noticed that the more I pressured him to eat, the worst it was.  Just make sure he is not undernourished and give him treats that are nutritional as well as his vitamin.

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