my child won't eat

[deleted account] ( 27 moms have responded )

My little boy, will only eat a few things, and none of them are very healthy He won't try anything else, i don't know what to do with him, if anyone has any tips, i'd be happy to hear them.

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Melissa - posted on 09/18/2009

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my 2 1/2 year old daughter is the pickiest eater i have ever seen. i was, and am, also a picky eater but now that i'm older i like a lot more foods and am willing to at least try anything. but alexis refuses to even try things. so now, instead of making her something to eat and ending up wasting it cuz she won't eat it, i stopped just giving her food at ther normal intervals in the day. now i wait till she uis actually hungry and asks for something- then she will eat, and i find it easier to get her to eat things if she is hungry enough. I was wasting time and food just making her stuff when i assumed she was hungry.

Brittany - posted on 09/26/2009

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I went through this with my son and while he's still picky he's MUCH better than before. When he was 15 months I spent nine days only putting in front of him different foods from the ones I knew were sure things and at day ten I gave up because all he had in ten days was 28 ounces of milk a day for his calories and I couldn't take it! He won the stubborn little man. At 17 months I tried a new method. I made sure breakfast every day was different but with foods he like with new toppings. For example he loves toast so one day he got yogurt toast, then peanut butter then apple butter then whole fruit jelly, etc. Lunches I did every day was a different food group but with known like foods or past liked foods: grilled cheese, cheese crisp, ABC soup mac and cheese with frozen mixed veggies, chicken tenders and french fries (my son went from eating anything I gave him from 8 months to 12 months to not touching or wanting a darn thing but cereal! and by cereal I mean PLAIN cheerios!) Dinner he got whatever the heck I was making. I was not going to cater to three different style eaters. I figure if I force my husband to eat veggies and myself to eat meat with every meal to set a good example, Ethan can eat the same thing too. Half the time he will pick at it. It might take him 30-40 minutes in his chair to get around to it but he stays there until he's tried it.

Also we have found our child eats better when alone. He hates eating at the table but he loves watching us talk or clean or do things on the computer while he is eating in his high chair. And by alone I do not mean unsupervised I mean he does not like sitting at the table and eating as a group. And honestly my husband and I think that's fine and table meals are overrated. Neither of us grew up eating at tables and we both have good relationships with our parents and siblings. Go figure.

[deleted account]

You are the mother. You cook his meals. He will eat what you put in front of him or he will go hungry. I believe when we give our little ones too many choices we end up with problems. I promise you, he'll end up eating...he won't starve. Just put in front of him what your family is eating and that is his choice.

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Donna - posted on 04/28/2011

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There is a lot of good advice here already. I decided to pick a specific area to work on, and for me it was sandwiches. I just presented the same sandwich (literally the same one) at each meal until it was eaten or it went off. It took 2 days the first time, and the only other thing he was offered was fruit and water. I had to do the same thing with each filling, and slowly we have gotten to the point of happily eating at least 4 varieties. I have also done this with main meals once or twice, but mainly I can work around his fussiness, for example, we had salmon, new potatoes and green beans last night, and the veg are fine, but the salmon was served in vast amounts of Ketchup....I am prepared to meet him in the middle on this one lol

Zibusiso - posted on 04/28/2011

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lam also experiencing the same problem with my 22months old boy,his a very fancy eater,very choosy.He likes sweet things.

Jenn - posted on 09/26/2009

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Just keep offering a variety of healthy choices - if they are hungry they will eat. My son tries to eat PB & J every day, which I do make sometimes for him, but other times I tell him "no, we are having what I made for lunch/supper" and he can choose to eat or not - they won't starve themselves.

Michelle - posted on 09/22/2009

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With this one I have no clue..lol..I had the same problem with my 3 children. My oldest went through a stage of 6 months were all she wanted was pb and j and milk. lol I asked my doctor about it at the time and he said as long as she don't quite eating that your fine. He said at that age she knows what her body needs there is no preconceptions of you should eat this and not that. My oldest is now 11 and the tallest in her class and very active and healthy. If you are really concerned why not try a children's chewable vitamin this way you know he's getting the vitamins he needs..

Jessica - posted on 09/21/2009

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I have to not give any snacks in between meals and they only get the food at meal time. If they don't eat it, they wait until next meal time. It took a little while, but they are catching on. They still don't eat every meal, but when they are hungry they eat everything without very many complaints.

Brooke - posted on 09/20/2009

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Try to eat at the table as often as you can! This is huge and people often don't realize it. He needs to see that you make one meal for everyone and one meal only and he either eats it or goes hungry, more than likely he will not choose to go hungry. Also, try to limit snacking because it could be that he isn't hungry enough when you try to feed him. My daughter has breakfast around 8, lunch at 12, a small snack around 3 or 4 then dinner at 6-6:30 all of which are eaten at the table with me (& Daddy at dinner). She rarely gets sugary unhealthy food or juice, I do that because I don't want her to refuse the healthy stuff. It's worked so far, she loves whole wheat pasta, veggies, fruits, and she drinks her whole milk and water no problem. I try to get all the food groups in throughout the day. Lastly, make his food colorful & fun! Good luck! =)

Elke - posted on 09/20/2009

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Salut, my boys are 2.5 years old. I bet you don´t cook the same food for all of your family members and eat that all together? Is that correct? :-)
Also, at that age the kids can help to prepare lunch a bit. I can recommend peas - buy fresh pea pods at the market.It´s still the season now. Let him pull out the peas. Carrots and peas with butter and parsley - it´s delicious. Fun for all of you! Good luck!

Megan - posted on 09/20/2009

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I'd be careful about fighting "food battles" I've read that making food an issue can cause bad eating habits later in life. That's what a few doctors have told me. If you offer something from every food group then he'll eventually get everything he needs. Read the book "Hungry Monkey" it's got a lot of good recipies and advice from a stay at home dad.

Kelly - posted on 09/20/2009

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i have a 7yo who was a pretty good eater until she started school now i have huge prblems with eating. i know if my hubby dishes up a meal he will pile a huge amount on her plate and she just refuses to eat it. but if i give har a small plate with a slighty smaller than she should be eating i find she will eat it. it might take her 2 hours to eat it but she does then i reward her with fruit or something she does like. i did see this on super nanny once and it because kids find it overwhelming to sit to a huge amount of food. think snack size portions. hope this helps

Belinda - posted on 09/20/2009

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hi there, i have the same problem with my 22 month old, hes still on 10 month old jar food as he finds big lumps too much to chew, so like some other mums i mash the food i eat in with the jar food, also my son will not drink juice at all or drink out of a cup yet, we are still drinking full fat milk from a bottle !! any suggestions please.....

Danielle - posted on 09/20/2009

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My 19 month old is the same exact way! The doctor says not to worry about it because they can go along time without eating, it's whether or not their getting fluids. She stayed the same weight for 7 months. I've just learned that she'll eat when she wants. I think she gets so busy running around that I have to stop and ask her if she is hungry. She likes to pick at my food more than anything so I eat alot of salad and stuff. Now if you put cookies and lettuce in front of her, she'll pick lettuce. Now her favorite foods are onions, tomatoes, cucumbers ect.

Allie - posted on 09/19/2009

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One thing my parents did was take away food until I got really hungry. Then I ate whatever was on my plate. It sounds cruel, but I don't believe it is neglectful. He should come to the point that he knows he needs to eat what he is given. Its hard to do, but it should work out. (In my own point of view)

Judith - posted on 09/19/2009

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I give my little girl massed veg then I put maynaze over it she seems to like the tast .. I hope that might help

Amanda - posted on 09/19/2009

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Charmaine we are having the same problem with our 2.5 year old, Jacob. I have tried everything. He is only 27lbs, and that is just 5lbs heavier than my 15 month old. We have tried not letting him eat if he doesn't eat his dinner, but then he wakes up at 5 AM crying that he's hungry, so naturally I give in and give him something. We have started giving him Pediasure to make sure he's staying healthy as possible. If you find a solution let me know!!!!

Sharon - posted on 09/19/2009

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Have you ever considered making decorative faces with his food??

Maybe putting a little cheese on veggies…or even just until he starts to like…giving him a reward for eating something he might not like…or show him yourself how

“Great” it tastes to “Mommy”??? Also how much of a Big Boy" he'd be if he did just try it?

Using different colored plates with faces and pictures on them to colored utensils will go along way sometimes….if the plate isn’t clean…he can’t see the cool picture under the foods! ;) For more cool advice I just started my own little circle…

"Mommy Secrets"…become a member….I know it’s new…but you never can get too much advice, or even give a little too!!!!

Your Friend,

Sharon “Mommy Secrets”

[deleted account]

Thanks for the advice, he is starting to worry me, he's only 2 years, dinner time is the worse time, he just looks at the food and won't even try it. When he knows it's dinner time he won't let me put him in highchair, he starts screaming and holding his breath, so i tried sitting him up at the table with his sister, but nothing works, he hates dinners.

Kara - posted on 09/18/2009

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My doctor always says they will eat when they are hungry enough. When that time comes, only offer healthy food. If they eat that then they can have other things. (It's very good in theory, and most of the time it does work....)

Laura - posted on 09/18/2009

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I give my son children's multivitamins with Iron. Read the label on the back to see what age he can start taking them. I have always given my son fresh fruits and veggies and he had always eaten healthy, not into junk foods that much or just as a treat. Practice healthier eating habits for your child, from the very start. Save the junk stuff as a treat. If he is hungry he will eat. My son worries about trying new foods sometimes. I tell him, "You know you don't know until you try it". Sometimes he will sometimes he won't.

Ashley - posted on 09/18/2009

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Try making it fun! Make shapes with the food! Use food coloring! Be creative. If he thinks its a game he is playing with you or an art project that he can eat afterwards he may be more willing to eat! Good luck!

Jackie - posted on 09/18/2009

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Throw out everything that is unhealthy.. if its not in the home you can't make it for him. Cook what you want him to eat and serve it. Do not offer anything else and NO treats unless he eats it. He won't starve and he will eat when he is hungry. As Kerrie already said he needs very little a day and no child has every intentionally starved themselves to death. So offer what you want him to eat and remind him you aren't a resturant. You can also try making him a treat of those foods he really likes and let him know he can have it when the rest of his food is done. My youngest is picky too and you wouldn't believe the things he does eat now. Another trick i use with him is he will say he is full after two bites. I say thats fine but we are all eating so you can't leave the table yet. We continue with our conversations and amazingly he continues eating after he gets bored just sitting there. If my son starts out dinner with "I don't like that" I always answer with "Oh yes you do!! You ate it all the last time I made it!" no matter what it is even if he hasn't had it before. He may actually not like it but he will at least try it because I told him he loved it last time.

Kerry - posted on 09/18/2009

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I used to have this problem with my eldest son. My health visitor told me that if I wrote down everything he had eaten over a week, not a day, then you will see that he is actually getting enough. Some kids don't need to eat loads and the guideline amount of food for toddlers is 1 tablespoon of food, per year of their life. If he is hungry he will eat. My eldest is now a great eater.

Amanda - posted on 09/18/2009

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my 20 month old is the same way. this probably sounds deceving but my son loves things out of chip bags and junk food boxes. so i cleaned out a dorito bag and ill put apple slices or grapes or the veggie sticks that look like french frys in the bag. im not saying it works everytime but ALOT of the time it does n its something.

Michelle - posted on 09/18/2009

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try hiding pureed/mashed food in hisfood. my son loves packet pasta and ive found i can put mashed up potatos and cauliflower in it if theres a white sauce with it and he cant even tell. pureed is the best, still put a piece of what ever you hidden in the food just in case he might try it. or try your different sauces for him to dip spme food into. just a few ideas that i hope help.

Sarah - posted on 09/18/2009

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My three year old is the same way! Just make sure to give him vitamins if he is old enough and just keep trying new things. Once you find something he will eat keep it around! Also try not to give in to what he will eat now if it is not healthy for him, it will be hard, but if he is truly hungry he will eat. Hope that helps!

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