M.D. asks from Belmont, CA on October 03, 2008
16 Month Old Still Eating Pureed and Baby Food
I am a first time mommy to a sweet 16 month old boy that is having a little trouble with table foods. He had "reflux" when he was a baby, but we have stopped his medicine on pediatrician advice. Our problem is this: he will only eat pureed foods for the most part. When we offer him other foods (potato pancakes, waffles, toast, pasta, etc, etc) he will just throw it onto the floor and refuse to put it into his mouth. On occasion, he will chew some pieces of strawberries or watermelon, and eat cheerios, but for the most part he wants his pureed food. I don't think he has an actual difficulty chewing, as he CAN do it sometimes, I think he's just used to his pureed foods, and stubborn and unwilling to try something new. Although sometimes he will actually choke and gag, occasionally throwing up. Sometimes he refuses to eat all together. I have taken him to a gastroenterologist and his pediatrician, and both say that he's normal, growing normally, and only time will make his food preferences better. We have upcoming appointments with Nutrition and Occupational Therapy.
I guess my question is this: Any successful strategies that you ladies have had for introducing more table foods, and foods that need to be chewed for picky toddlers? Should I be worried about him?
Any advice would be MUCH appreciated. I'm getting so frustrated!
T.S. answers from Sacramento on October 03, 2008
Try mixing chunks into his baby food. For example, if he likes pureed carrots, add sliced cooked carrots to the bowl, or buy chunky applesauce instead of the babyfood type.
As he gets used to the new textures, gradually introduce more chunks or try the chunks wihtout the the puree.
J.S. answers from San Francisco on October 05, 2008
It sounds like your little guy might be a "texture" baby- my daughter also had very strong preferences about the textures of her food. I also starting including some chunkier pieces in her pureed foods and while there was resistance to this, she gradually came around. I discovered that she liked avocado, but only if it was mashed, not just scooped right out of the skin. Stange since it was the same thing, but it was all about texture. I did a lot of eating of her food, making happy faces and sounds since she likes to copy mamma. It worked sometimes. I also now give her a baby fork or spoon so she feels like she is part of the process.
It's an adventure, isn't it? :-)
P.N. answers from San Francisco on October 17, 2008
Sounds like your little boy is kind of like my older daughter (3.5 yrs). She had reflux as a baby, and took medication. She constantly spit up and we had occasional "volcano" vomit. I always had a difficult time feeding her. She never really ate well until she turned 2. The only pureed food that she would eat were the green beans. She ate them every day until she was about 3 yrs old. Of course I constantly tried to feed her other foods, sometimes successful, sometimes not. I kept her on the stage 2 formula until she turned 2 and started eating better to be sure she had her nutrients. At 3.5 yrs, she is a very good eater (eats just about everything) and a very healthy size. I wouldn't worry too much if your 16 month old likes pureed food. I thought mine would be on it forever, but finally at 3 yrs, she decided to move on. It made for convenient when not at home... I just took one for the road. Good luck.
M.M. answers from San Francisco on October 04, 2008
Wellll, since he wont go hungry, you might want to just hold out? I had a friend who's baby was picky and she go into the habit of making her son a different meal from the others just so he would eat. Her doctor said that the wont starve, so make for him what everyone's eating and if he refuses to eat find. He will eventually eat whats there and again he won't starve. He advised her that it will take a few frustrating meal, but that not only is it about food but more about battlet of wills. Good luck...
S.D. answers from San Francisco on October 03, 2008
My niece was a picky eater - would actually gag on anything solid. My brother/sister-in-law talked to her doctor who told them not to worry until she was closer to 18 mos, at which point, she should probably see a specialist. In my niece's case, she just grew into a broader spectrum of textures. But, we did give her a cookie, just to test that it wasn't a physical problem. Sure enough, the kid devoured the cookie.
Sounds like you are doing what you can. Try a cookie if you just need a little reassurance.