How do i get my almost 3 year old to eat a range of food he is only eating starchy food now and refuses to eat any colored foods. Can anyone help?


MaryAnn - posted on 01/27/2009




Quoting Anichia:

How do i get my almost 3 year old to eat a range of food he is only eating starchy food now and refuses to eat any colored foods. Can anyone help?

Hi Anichia !

Unfortunately alot of children dont like fruits and vegetables and dont eat alot of them . A doctor however introduced me to Juice Plus which offers gummies for younger kids and capsules for older kids and grown ups . They offer a creative way to offer kids added nutrition from 17 fruits and vegetables and grains everyday - in tasty gummy form . My son loves them and takes them everyday , there is not artificial flavours or colors , they by no means replace fresh fruit and vegetables but assure me that my  kids get 17 different fruits and veg every single day !!  you can visit for more information on juice plus


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Denise - posted on 03/01/2009




Read the book "The healthiest kid in the neighborhood" By Dr. William Sears, it will teach you how to reprogram his taste buds. I also give my kids some stuff called Juice Plus, it's 15 fruits and vegetables in gummies. They love them and this doctor recommends them, and so do I!

You can visit to learn more.

[deleted account]

Getting kids to eat a variety of foods can be a real challenge!

The key is to not give in to his demands.

There is an old chinese proverb that says "Habits are at first cobwebs, then cables."

Now is a best time to create positive food habits, because bad habits are really hard to break (like cables) the older we get.

I teach nutrition education and the topic of how to get picky eaters to eat comes up a lot. One of the ideas I teach moms, and I also introduce to children is what I call "Broccoli Buds"

Let me explain. As adults we know that our tastes change over time. You may not know, though, that humans have to taste a food eleven times to really be able to decide if they like it or not. So we have to keep tasting foods.

To put this into language your kids can understand...

Just as your child didn't get a full set of teeth in all at once, our taste buds 'come in' at different times too. (You can point out that the taste buds are those bumpy things on your tongue!)

Unlike teeth, you can't see when they come in. So if you don't like broccoli NOW, you still need to taste broccoli because that is the only way to tell if your broccoli buds are in yet. You gotta keep tasting! One of these days, you'll taste broccoli and be like "WOW! That's GOOD!" And then you'll know your broccoli buds came in!

This concept is easier to teach if your child knows other kids who have lost teeth or seen new teeth grow in. But kids definitely 'get it'

But it's not a parent's job to 'force' kids to taste.

The good news is that it’s not all on YOUR shoulders, Mom.

As moms we try so hard to do everything ‘just right’ so that our kids will be healthy and happy, and that can be a lot of pressure.

When it comes to feeding our kids, as parents we have certain responsibilities:

1. A parent is responsible for deciding and enforcing WHERE a child eats.

2. A parent is responsible for deciding and carrying out a schedule of meal times and snack times for WHEN a child eats.

3. A parent is responsible for deciding and following through on WHAT a child eats.

That’s it for Moms & Dads regarding feeding, but kids have responsibilities too:

1. A child is responsible for deciding HOW MUCH to eat.

2. A child is responsible for deciding IF they are going to eat, or if they are NOT going to eat.

Some of the problems with kids & eating involve trust or a lack of trust.

When you child was a newborn, you trusted that he ate when he was hungry and stopped when he was full. We usually lose that trust some time when our kids have passed the food introduction phase and are learning about the ‘other’ foods their parents eat, like cheetos and cake, etc.

If we as parents are providing a variety of healthy foods, and little or no access to junk foods, then we can trust that they will eat what they need when they are hungry and stop when they are full.

You can download this FREE children’s book (Tummy Talks) to read with your child and help them better understand the ideas of Hunger and being Full:

I’m also including a link to a really great site, with all kinds of wonderful info and help, including kid friendly healthy recipes. There are downloads in pdf format that you can view or print out, and the information is geared to be encouraging and uplifting. And on almost every message is a story from a real-life mom who faces the same challenges as you do, sharing what she did in her situation.

You can find a lot of helpful info at this site:


Messages for mothers of infants

• #TH1: No cereal zone (infant feeding 0-6 mo)

• #TH2: The airplane (infant feeding 6 mo)

• #TH3: Teaching colors (infant feeding 6-8 mo)

• #TH4: Smiley face (infant feeding 8-12 mo)

• #TH5: Babies blossom (infant development)

• #TH6: Graduate smart (breastfeeding)

• #TH7: Other uses for bottles (weaning)

• #TH8: Ultrasound (mother support)

• #TH9: Baby legs (postpartum weight loss)

• #TH10: Watch for signs (postpartum depression)

• #TH11: Vegetable baby face (introducing vegetables)

Messages for mothers during pregnancy (breastfeeding and weight gain)

• #TH12: Pregnant belly (prenatal weight gain)

• #TH13: Supermom (breastfeeding)

• #TH14: A new me (teenage pregnancy/breastfeeding)

• #TH15: College diploma (smoking)

Message for all parents about healthful eating

• #TH16: Set the table (family meals)

• #TH17: 10 tasteful gifts (superfoods)

• #TH18: Grow happy kids (child nutrition)

• #TH19: Follow the leader (role modeling)

Messages about common eating concerns

• #TH20: Magic cup (weaning)

• #TH21: Food fights (picky eating)

• #TH22: Balance takes practice (fast food)

• #TH23: Pester power (TV advertising)

• #TH24: Baby diaper (educating grandparents)

Messages about physical activity

• #TH25: Seesaw (healthy childhood weight)

• #TH26: Greatest show on earth (role modeling)

Messages about mothers and weight loss

• #TH27: Sensible weight-loss (weight management)

Messages for mothers with recipes

• # TH28: Happy smiles (healthy snack ideas)

• #TH29: Ground beef magic (beef recipes)

• #TH30: Chicken magic (chicken recipes)

• #TH31: Pork magic (pork recipes)

• #TH32:Vegetarian magic (bean recipes)

• #TH33: Morning time (breakfast recipes)

Jacynthe - posted on 02/26/2009




I agree with both Andrea and Cassie. When my 6 year old decided he didn't like vegetables anymore even though he had been eating them for years, I went on a no choice regime. He would come with me at the grocery store and pick out the fruits and veggies for the week. When we got home that's what was on his dinner plate with protein. No starches. It took  two dinners. But I am happy to report that he and his brother (because if his older brother wasn't eating it he wasn't going to either) are back to eating vegetables and he now packs them in his lunch himself.

Denise - posted on 02/07/2009




My kids take Juice Plus too! They love it and now my 5 year old ask for spinach salad. They say it helps reprogram their taste buds. I have a great dvd, called "9 Simple Steps to a Healhier Diet" that really helped me, if you'd like to borrow it email me a or visit for more information on Juice Plus it comes in a great little gummie.

Denise - posted on 02/07/2009




My kids take Juice Plus too! They love it and now my 5 year old ask for spinach salad. They say it helps reprogram their taste buds. I have a great dvd, called "9 Simple Steps to a Healhier Diet" that really helped me, if you'd like to borrow it email me a or visit for more information on Juice Plus it comes in a great little gummie.

Christie - posted on 01/31/2009




Hi- These are all good comments.  I agree that letting the child help pick, wash and prepare will help alot and not having the junkie stuff around is good for the whole family.  Teach your child about basic nutrition- veggies have vitamins and phytochemicals that make your body grow strong and run fast.  In our family, we do not make our children eat anything but we don't offer unheathy foods and we all get the same dinner unless the food is very spicy.  They can eat or not eat but we don't make an issue out of it. It has helped us get through a picky eater.  I am a registered dietitian and know that the choices you make now in helping him to eat well will follow him lifelong.  It is a gift to teach a child to eat well, while I am not opposed to vitamins or sneaking some in, teaching them to choose may make the difference between chonic disease and obesity or a healthy life. 

Andrea - posted on 01/27/2009




Hello again! Just a tip on fruit & veggies...I blend up a mixture of fruit & you can also add veggies if you like to make homemade popsicles!!! Your boy will love them & so will you knowing he is getting a healthy treat!!!

Kelly - posted on 01/24/2009




As awful as this would take a well nourished child 88 days to starve to death!!  That being said...I always find that hunger is the best motivator when introducing any new food.  Our eight year old will eat anything!!  I have had great results waiting to introduce new foods when she is really good and hungry, and limiting the availability she has to fill up on other less nutritous stuff.  She loves artichokes because they are messy and I take the leaves and drizzle them with olive oil and then put grated parmesean cheese on them!!

Marnie - posted on 01/23/2009




I had the same problem with my son. I started to leave out a muffin tin with a variety of "colored" foods in each of the compartments. I also mixed in fun foods like goldfish, yogurt covered raisins...etc. I found that if they see it all the time sitting on the counter they are more likely to grab something as they walk by. My son now eats most raw veggies and loves salads. I put things like peppers, celery, carrots, craisins sticking up out of the muffin makes it fun for them. kids love anything dipped in ranch so that also helps...good luck!

Michelle - posted on 01/22/2009




I completely agree with Andrea! My son has always had a preference for veggies since he first started eating solid foods but somewhere around 5 years old he wanted to snack constantly on anything but veggies. I took away any snacks that weren't veggies. At dinner time he had to eat a serving (appropriate to his age) of veggies before he could eat the rice or chicken or whatnot. This also works on kids who won't eat anything unless its a "snackie" food. As long as you are always giving them a choice of something healthy to eat when they are hungry they will give in at some point and eat it.....eventually grow to love it! Good Luck!

User - posted on 01/22/2009




Try blending it even works on picky husbands!! There is a book out just for that...Deceptively Delicious by Jessica Seinfeld" It is food for children with veggies blended in. It's great to use until they are not so against eating veggies.

Cassie - posted on 01/21/2009




Take you child to the grocery store with you and tell him that he is in charge of the veggies for the week.  He can pick them out, weigh them, wash them, help prepare them.  You may be surprised what he will eat.  Also, think about giving him veggies in the car, when he is hungry or put out a veggie tray before dinner as his only snacking option.  Finally, don't forget the unusal items like raw cauliflower, raw green beans, purple cabbage.  You may be surprised.  Make it fun and less like a chore. 

Andrea - posted on 01/21/2009




My daughter was doing the same thing! My doctor suggested just not offering her anything with starch & only giving her foods that she doesnt want to eat.

After a day my daughter gave in!!! I know it's hard not to give in & may seem mean @ first but when he get's hungry enough he will eat what you give him! Once you brake the cycle of only eating starchy foods he will will be more open to try new things!!!

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