March 08, 2008,
A.C. asks from Kissimmee, FL on February 16, 2008
Help! My Daughter Will Only Eat 5 Different Foods...
I have a two year old daughter who is the pickest eater I have ever seen. The only food she will eat is cereal, applesauce, grapes, chicken nuggets and hot dogs. there is absolutely no veggies or pasta in her diet. I give her a vitamin everyday but I am so worried that she is not getting enough nutrition. I have tried everything to get her to eat more variety. i've tried to set the food in front of her, sit down and eat with her, force feed her, talk to her about food, show her pics. I am at a loss for what to do. If you have any suggestions please let me know.
B.H. answers from Los Angeles on February 19, 2008
I have read all the advice and I am furious with most of it. I am a family health and wellness consultant. I work with families who want to make a difference in their lives of their child. Most of my families have overweright or obese children because of the eating habits they developed when they were young. I have two of my own children and over the years, I have worked with over 500 kids...so I have a bit of experience.
You are the parent. Ask your self, Why is she only eating hotdogs? Why will she only eat chicken nuggets? The commonality between the two questions is YOU. You buy them, you cook them, you feed them to her. YOU. Your child is two.
Yes it is true that children have more food sensitivity, meaning that they have about 3 times the taste buds as adults do on their tongues. But this just means that it is that much more important to get them started on the right track. It may not be easy, but you MUST do it.
You get to make the decisions for your family. Children will eat what is good for them, if they are given the right choices. It is up to you to give her the healthy choices.
SOME THINGS TO DO:
1. Put a variety of fruits and veggies in small bowls on the table or in the fridge (that is HER food and her food only) BUT ONLY HEALTHY FOOD! NO other snacks. NO JUICE, NO MILK NO COKKIES NOT SUGARY TREATS AT ALL. Fruits and veggies only They have all the naturally ocurring sugars a child needs.
2. Start the day with a good breakfast. Fruit, toast, eggs, protein shakes (NO JUICE- way too much sugar). Most cereals that you buy are quite unhealthy (eating the box oftentimes is better). Read the label on your cereal or email me (____@____.com). Make sure you are setting her up for success for her day. A sugary cereal in the AM is the worst thing you can do for her.
3. STAY AWAY from too much milk. It is empty calories meaning it fills you up but there is no substance to it.
4. DO NOT hide her veggies, DO NOT trick her into eating. SHOW HER how the entire family eats healhty (I am sorry chicken nuggets and hotdogs are two of the foods that are exceptionally unhealthy for kids)
5. Make food fun. Allow her to be in on the preperation.
6. If she doesn't want to eat the HEALTHY meal you both have prepeared, DON"T FORCE her. She will eat when she is hungry. Leave her only healthy options. Her bowls of fruit and veggies are still available.
7. BE THE PARENT. If you buy the bad stuff, you can't complain that is all she will eat. It is up to you to make a difference in the life of your child.
8. As for the vitamins, again if you want, we can chat about which one you are taking. Many are filled with preservatives and sugar just so the kids will eat them. Bottom line is, if it was bought at a grocery store or a department store then it is not that great. Remember, you get what you pay for.
I give free first time consultations if you are interested just call.
3 moms found this helpful
J.A. answers from Jacksonville on February 18, 2008
Talk to your pediatrician. My older children went through phases like that and outgrew them quickly. My youngest daughter has been that way since she began eating and it is just one of the symptoms of her autism. Your daughters pediatirician can ask the right questions to let you know if it's truly a worry or just a phase.
My oldest daughter ate nothing but cheese hot dogs for almost four months and her doctor said not to worry, she was healthy. Sure enough one day she just got tired of the hot dogs and started eating everything else!
Please don't try witholding foods she will eat until you see her doctor. My youngest child with autism can go without food for days and just sleep through the hunger. While well meaning people dishing out advice think that she will get hungry enough to eat, they are wrong. If she doesn't eat and just sleeps through the hunger her health becomes seriously endangered.
One other trick I learned with all of them - just put one or two bites of each food on her plate. When she eats them, offer more.
1 mom found this helpful
D.K. answers from Jacksonville on February 17, 2008
I have 2 year old triplets and they all like different things. I bought the book called the Sneaky Chef and I use it everyday. The recipes have you make a lot of purees and sneak it in food they like. It works on my kids and some of the food is so good that I like it. You should check it out. Good luck.
1 mom found this helpful
T.F. answers from Tallahassee on February 17, 2008
Probably not the pickest eater, but pretty picky :-) - I knew a child who would only eat PB&J. Anyway, my kids eat anything, and it is because we didn't give them a lot of choice 'not' to eat it. First, it is human nature that we won't starve ourselves to death, at least a small child won't. So basically, don't offer those 5 things as options. Granted she may not like this, and those foods you mentioned are not 'bad' foods, but I probably would not consume great amounts of hotdogs (have you ever looked at what is in a hotdog...that is scary). But you can still offer great foods that offer more nutritional value. For example, macaroni and cheese, apple wedges, melons, pineapple, peaches, baby cooked carrots, oatmeal, grits, mashed potatoes, yogurt, cheese bites/sticks, PB&J, or PB&banana, even fish sticks that look alot like chicken nuggets would be great.
I would not make a big deal about 'oh we are going to try new foods today, etc.' I would just make the food and put it in front of the 2 of you, and you eat like there is nothing different.
I had a great book called, 'Feed me I'm Yours'. and I really liked the recipies and ideas.
I never disguised food, but I know people that would put other things in food to get their kids to eat it; or they would make cute little mickey mouse pancakes, etc. If it works I guess do it. My kids didn't need that.
I remember my kids were eating salad with ranch dressing at 18 months, and my son ate liver, fish, and squash casserole. We just NEVER cooked anything different for our kids and they just ate what we ate and we never thought about it. My biological children ate everything, but didn't care for ice cream, and my older son doesn't like ham. Of our adopted children, the only thing that 2 of our kids would not eat is sweet potatoes, as their culture doesn't eat that (they are Ukrainian), and they just don't like the feeling in their mouth. So it is o.k. not to eat 'everything', but to have such a limited diet is probably not the best. I'm not knocking vitamins, but I think that the best source of vitamins is through eating the food itself, plus it tastes a whole lot better.
1 mom found this helpful
J.L. answers from Jacksonville on February 17, 2008
I'm sure you've tried everything, but just in case you haven't ... If she likes cheese, you can try drowning some broccoli or cauliflower, or any vegetable you think would work, in cheese sauce, like velveeta. My mom did this with us. Each time she made broccoli, she made less and less cheese sauce, till eventually she just "forgot" to make the cheese sauce and we ate it plain, or with a little Lawry's Seasoned salt or regular salt. Also, to get vegetables in us, she would coat them in flour and then fry them. It's not the healthiest, but we developed a taste for eggplant, squash, zucchini, mushrooms, etc. and then we she offered them to us unfried, they weren't as foreign to us. With the fruit, you can maybe try "smoothies". You can throw in her applesauce and grapes (not sure how it would turn out) and she can taste it with just the two ingredients. Then maybe the next time you throw in some strawberries without her seeing. Then a few more the next time, and then a few more, until she likes the taste, and then when she sees you do it, tell her you've been making it that way all along, she'll taste it and see that she likes it. Use blueberries, bananas, any fruit I guess.
What also might work is the reward system. She can have her chicken nuggets if she tries one bite of macaroni and cheese, or spinach, or tomato, or pork chop. Maybe give her a choice, so "she's" the one in charge. She can choose to take a bite of watermelon OR peach, and then she can have her grapes. Then the next time, it's two bites, but put less grapes on her plate, and if she wants more grapes, she'll have to take one more bite of a different food first, and then more grapes.
I know you said you give her vitamins, but to make sure she gets her fruits and veggies, you might want to check out Juice Plus. My daughter loves the gummies. She takes the fruit one with breakfast, and the veggie with dinner. I've tried them and both are sweet tasting. If you don't want to invest in 4 jars before you try them out first, maybe go to ebay. Hope this helps.
1 mom found this helpful
M.C. answers from Daytona Beach on February 17, 2008
That's so funny. My 17 year old did that when she was little.. Chicken, grapes, cereal, potatoes, and bananas.
The good news is, if you don't make a big deal, it will all balance out in the long run. Seems like she's been given attention for this & the more attention you give to this matter, the more she'll do it. Plain and simple. (Why wouldn't she do something that seems to get so much of mom's one-on-one attention/time?)
Another thing you can try that's not so attention-giving to the matter in her eyes.. is trays of options. I use to leave plates of foods out in the day, a variety of raw veggies, finger sandwiches, fruits, dried raisins and such. That way she'll have her "pick" at any given time. Make sure she's not over-consuming liquids so she'll be hungry. Give her liquids of course.. just don't let her fill up (juices are food ya know so this can count as a fruit).
Also, at the age of 3 I told my daughter "we have a new rule in the house.. everyone has to say 'hello' to everything on their plate. That means you must take one bite of everything. You don't have to eat it.. just take one bite." She's been eating full-force ever since. That helped her learn that she actually DID like other things.
D.J. answers from Pensacola on February 17, 2008
For the next week do not give her those options, and avoid snacks. She will be hungry enough to eat what she is given. If the cereal is whole grain that is good, real chicken is good, grapes may give her an upset stomach if she eats too much, applesauce is also good but too much will effect bowels, I would act as if hot dogs dropped of the face of the earth... Offer her what you think she needs, put them in something fun, like an ice cube tray or something fun looking, say when you are done we are...(for example) going to the park or we will read your favorite book, if you do not eat it you will sit on your bed and then give it to the child for the next meal/ or we allow them to cover anything in ketchup if they eat it!...Goals are good they work for all of us. Good luck!
PS I have 6 kids and have been there!
F.R. answers from Norfolk on February 17, 2008
Sounds like one of my boys. He's 3 now. And he is the most strong-willed, picky child I have ever met. You cannot trick him with hiding food. You cannot give him a plate of something he doesn't "like" and expect him to eat it no matter how long you hold out. I tried that once. I had also gotten suggestions like a couple below that says just don't offer her the foods you know she will eat and eventually she'll eat the food you give her. HA! I started at dinner time. (We ALWAYS sit as a family at the dinner table every evening) I gave him a plate of the same things mommy and daddy were eating. He sat there. Bedtime came and he was still sitting there. He went to bed hungry. The next morning I heated up that plate of food and he still wouldn't even taste it. He went to play and when he would ask for food, I gave him his plate. It lasted until lunch the next day and he still wouldn't touch it. I wouldn't let it go on longer than that. He was only 2. But he,literally, would rather starve than eat something he didn't like. And the thing is, he doesn't know he doesn't like it. He's never tasted it.
So every night, to this day, I still make his plate with all the same foods everyone else is eating and sit it in front of him. Sometimes he'll take a bite, sometimes he won't. After we're done eating, I will make him what I know he'll eat. Keep offering, but you can't force it.
I found that if you stop the grazing kind of eating between meals, they will be more willing to try new things. They need to feel hungry or it really won't work.
I like the idea that one lady had below about putting a variety of different foods out and letting her pick. We do that too. Lunch will be a large assortment of different little foods. Some raw veggies, raisins or other dried fruits, peanut butter on a teaspoon (he likes it better that way... who knows why), apple wedges, melon balls, graham crackers, yogurt, waffles, breakfast sausages, bacon... they love bacon! Pudding works too.
The truth of it is that they do grow out of this. The older she gets, the more you can negotiate with her. You set the example by eating what you want her to eat and she may, one day, want a bite of mommy's food. As long as her growth isn't suffering, the doctors will tell you to not make a big deal out of it. Try the V8 juices like the other moms suggested. It's good stuff. And don't worry about it too much. You'll both get through it and be fine!
K.W. answers from Pensacola on February 17, 2008
Pedia sure is a good source of nutrition and vitamins for children at a young age who are picky eaters try that is comes in different flavors!
J.W. answers from Panama City on February 18, 2008
Hi A.! Unfortunately, a lot of two year olds like to show their independence and food is one area this becomes very apparent in. My daughter is 19 months old and is not a super great eater - but isn't too picky either. I can only tell you what we have done and what has helped us. We tell her what we are making for breakfast/lunch/dinner and try to always include at least one thing we know she likes fairly well. We give her a plate with a serving of each food item and she decides what to eat and how much to eat. Her favorite foods aren't included each time but there is always something that she eats fairly well. She has to try everything before she is given a second serving of anything else. We have done this ever since she started eating food. At first - she would sometimes shake her head "no" (before she could talk) and we would tell her that what she was given is what everyone is eating for that meal and although, she doesn't have to eat any of it - if she decides to eat - this is what it will be. She has refused to eat anything at certain times and has gone to bed without eating anything for dinner. But it hasn't happened too often. Do not force her to eat anything and don't make a big deal of it. She should be allowed to decide what she eats. You should decide what she is offered. My daughter is a very healthy 1 1/2 year old at 28 pounds, by the way. Some kids may go without food for several days - but mine surely wouldn't. So this works for us. Good luck.
B.B. answers from Orlando on February 17, 2008
Your daughter is eating enough to keep her healthy. The vitamin helps and it doesn't seem like she is unhappy. Stop worrying. She will see you eat a variety and get curious and want some. Have you tried yogurt? Try pureeing some veggies and put it in with the cereal. Shred carrots.Most children dont' like veggies until they get older or they are just introduced to them before they know any better. I have a picky eater and she is 11. I know your frustration but just be patient. She'll change. Good luck.
B.G. answers from Sarasota on February 17, 2008
My daughter loves V8 Fusion, it has a full serving of fruits and vegetables per 8oz. glass. It also comes in about 4 different flavors, it doesn't taste like V8 it tastes like fruit juice. Plus, its a 2 for 1 because I love it too! :)
T.J. answers from Orlando on February 17, 2008
Hi A., you should look into juice plus, it's not vitamins it's whole fruits and vegetable in gummies for kids. the kids love them and your introducing healthy foods to your daughter without her even knowing. you should keep presenting her with fresh fruit and vegies the repetition is supposed to help. anyways, hope i was helpfull- Tess
L.S. answers from Orlando on February 25, 2008
Hi My son has Autism and is very texture sensitive so I feel for what your going through...My pediatrician has me supplementing his meals with PEDIASURE. It comes in many different flavors and can be used as a meal replacement even. If you recieve WIC they will even pay fro it if you get a prescription form your childs doctor....
hope this helps until she grows out of this stage.
H.B. answers from Daytona Beach on March 08, 2008
I have the same problem with my 5 year old..I am also at a loss. Nothing works with her.
R.M. answers from Daytona Beach on February 17, 2008
I have a two year old and a three year old. They are both pretty pickey eaters. My two year old eats chicken nuggets, hot dogs, peanut butter sadwiches, grapes, bananas, and yogurt. I've breaded chicken in italian bread crumbs and bakes it to look like nuggets and he ate it. Just b/c the nuggets are usually processed meat. Just keep reintroducing her to the foods and try to get her to eat them everytime you do. The forcing doesn't work, I've tried it. I've noticed that my three year old is coming around and eating more veggies. If you are concerned about the veggies you could give him some of that V-8 v fusion. It's chocked full of veggies and is very good for you. I've had to give this to mine before just to get his veggie serving in. Hope this helps!
L.J. answers from Orlando on February 17, 2008
I don't know how to get her to eat, but I will tell you keep trying. My 6 year old son would not eat when he turned two. He had been a great eater before that. We would refer to him as the "air-plant".
Keep offering her different foods eventually she will eat new things.
M.H. answers from Fort Walton Beach on February 16, 2008
A multivitamin is good thinking but if it's Flintstones or something you would pick up at Wal-Mart it is probably mostly sugar, and most likely not absorbing.... however SOME is better than none. If you can, go to the health food store and ask for a pharmaceutical grade multi for her if you haven't already. That will at least help her nutrition. Nutrition is a funny thing. It builds our immune systems. Sometimes we don't see how strong our immune system is. And sometimes we don't see how weak it is until a condition appears or our kids get sick on a regular basis.
Have you ever taken those particular foods out of the house so she doesn't have those choices? Do you sit down and have a regular meal with her often or have you just tried a few times? Mealtime together can sometimes change a little one's attitude especially if she sees Mommy eating the same thing. I know you've probably tried just about everything but kids get into patterns just like we do.
Try taking her shopping and let her pick out a special plate to eat from but only when she eats her vegetables. Sometimes kids will do just about anything to have their special something. My girls loved to eat off my fine china but I would only let them eat from it when they were as prim and proper as princesses!
I know I haven't given you much to work with but I DO know how hard it is to get a child to do something they don't want to....
R.E. answers from Bellingham on February 17, 2008
try pureeing fruits or veggies and blending in with the applesauce. If it's the same texture, she might just eat through it without paying any attention to the slightly different flavor. Also, just keep putting whatever veggie you're having that night on her plate, too, just in a really small amount so it's not such a waste. Mostly, though, try not to let her no what a big issue it is for you because she prob likes the attention it's getting her.
Trust me, we all know how you feel, even if the details are slightly different- my 14 month old developed this charming little habit a couple of weeks ago where he bangs his head against the wall to get my attention. IT'S AWFUL!!!!! But the more I've reacted when he does it, the happier it seemed to make him and he'd do it more. I've started trying to ignore him when he does it and just pick him up and move him to some toys or somewhere away from the wall, and he's eased up a little.
Good luck with your daughter!!
M.C. answers from Norfolk on February 17, 2008
I think at some point, this happens to all of us. My two year old would love to eat only fruit and if given the choice, that's all she'd have.
Since she loves to eat hot dogs, I alternate between turkey dogs and all beef dogs chopped up with peas or corn in mac & cheese. She thinks it's wonderful and will eat it all. I limit the amount of food on her plate at one time, so she doesn't get overwhelmed. And when she says she's had enough, I let her get down, but if she wants something later, the only thing she can have is what we were eating for dinner or lunch.
But if you're really worried, talk to her peditrician. Mine recommended adding a carnation instant breafast drink to her mil, so we can be sure she's getting vitamins, as well as a multivitamin. She loves the milk, and is iffy on the vitamins.
They'll eat us out of house and home sooner than we expect and they won't let themselves starve, so don't let it stress you out. Good luck.
T.R. answers from Orlando on February 17, 2008
Our sons pediatrician always said to not worry. Every child goes through a stage where they will they only eat a couple of things. She said her 2nd daughter would only eat noodles and grape jelly for a while. Not together by the way. Anyway, she said that they always get what they need, a vitamin is a good idea but do not concern yourself too much. My son has never been very picky, but I wanted him to try new stuff because he was kind of in a rut, and so we watched a couple of cartoons, ones that he likes, about change. One was the wonder pets, the other was a sesame street episode. I just went online and looked for shows about how change is good and trying new things is good. I got a video about food from Elmo and bought some of the foods on the video for him and had them ready. No pushing just had them here, when he saw them sitting there he was all excited and wanted to try them. Good luck.
C.P. answers from Gainesville on February 17, 2008
My cousin is 5 and autistic. He will eat only about the same amount of foods (one of his is McD fries...and he knows the diff between them and homemade). I'm sure he's on a vitamin, but he's growing fine. When my aunt asked his doctor, his advice was to give him what he will eat. Now there's not really any " waiting it out" with him, since his pickyness (is that a word) is due to his autism, but most kids grow out of it. Probably your Natalie will too (btw, I love that name). Try chocolate or strawberry milk and Dora yogurt.
B.C. answers from Ocala on February 22, 2008
Hello A., firstly you need to relax regarding meal times because children, even 2yr olds, can pick up on your anxiousness. My concerns with her diet are with the amount of salt & sugar she is getting. If you have your meals with her & do not respond to her refusal to eat what you present her she will in time settle to eating properly. Try not to make an issue at mealtimes as this is mostly the root cause for eating problems in small children.
Perhaps you could sit one evening when Natalie is in bed & work out a menu plan for you both. It is easier to follow a plan at the beginning until you get used to it. Set out the days of the week plus each mealtime, incl. snacktimes midmorning & midafternoon..decide whether the main meal of the day is to be served at lunchtime or in the evening, & organise the meals around that.
There is no reason why Natalie cannot have foods from all the food groups incl. rice & pasta, meat & fish, eggs,potatoes, various vegetables.
Keep her portion sizes small...it is much better for her to start off with small amounts & then move onto asking for more than to overface her from the start.
If she eats her meal without fussing reward her by telling her she is a good girl...if you reward her good behaviour but ignore refusals to eat she will soon realise which is the best to have! She is only a baby still at 2 yrs of age & is learning.
M.. answers from Nashville on February 17, 2008
This advice is going to be harder for you than it will be for her.
You need to start to teach her about the value of food and how important it is to NOT WASTE.
You teach her that she needs to eat what she is given and she needs to eat what everyone else in the house is eating or she will go to bed hungry.
Make dinner tonight and make what you want MOMMY not what she wants.
Put dinner on the table and tell her that it is dinner time.
PRAY first if that is what you do.
Then start eating. If she wants to fight and complain and throw a tantrum LET HER. You need to eat and then leave the table and leave her dinner at the table. Tell her that she needs to eat or she will have to go to bed hungry. That’s it.
DO NOT GIVE HER ANY SNACKS!!!
DO NOT GIVE IN. She will start to eat other things when she realizes that you are serous and that this is not a joke.
Be strong mommy, you are the BOSS of the family and of the house and if you let her start now you are only looking for trouble. PUT YOUR FOOT DOWN NOW it will be a long and bumpy road.
I wish you the best and enjoy your little one.
From one mother to another.
A.M. answers from Daytona Beach on February 17, 2008
My son turned 2 in November. He loves veggies and fruit but recently we are ALL trying to eat better so I "sneak" extra veggies into other things.
An example: Last night I made mac-n-cheese (not a normal because it's so bad) and I finely grated carrot and cauliflower into it.
So your child may be a picky eater right now, her taste buds will grow and she will learn to eat other things; especially as she sees other children eating them. Just try to make what she is eating now healthier...take a fork to a banana so she doesn't realize it's mixed in her cereal; applesauce has such a strong flavor that she won't notice a little cauliflower in it, banana, any veggie or fruit that is about the same color; try making your own nuggets and corn dogs during the weekend and freeze them just like the store bought - use a wheat batter and add veggies to it. As long as everything is finely grated with a microplane or pureed she won't notice at a glance. You could also add wheat germ to things which is a great source of protein. Use your weekend to be creative and prepare multiple fruits and veggies in what she WILL eat and see what works.
W.S. answers from Jacksonville on February 17, 2008
I have an almost two-year old girl, too. She is pretty darn picky! One thing that has really worked is to have her "feed" one of her stuffed animals and then to have the stuffed animal feed her. For some reason that really works for her. hope that helps or at least sparks an idea for you!
A.C. answers from Jacksonville on February 19, 2008
I also have a picky little girl and I seem to have more luck with her during playdates when there are other children eating the foods I would like her to eat. Another idea is letting her eat with the same fork and spoon that you eat with. Another mom gave me the advice to let her eat with a tooth pick. It works! I know it sounds dangerous to let her have a toothpick but be sure to sit down with her as she's doing it. Make it a really big deal to use the different tools to eat with. Good Luck! A.
M.M. answers from Daytona Beach on February 21, 2008
A., this is my pesonal opioion but my 6 yr old was very picky when she was younger also. However as she got older she wanted to try new things. When she was younger i gave her the drinks for kids. They are called pediasure, or nutrapals. They are like a flavored milk but has all the nutriants they need. I hope this helps.. M.
A.L. answers from Orlando on February 17, 2008
Does she drink any juice or smoothies? If so, you should purchase a juicer. When you make juice in the juicer, you can add vegetables to it without it adding any taste and she will never know! You can easily add carrots, spinach, broccoli, etc. You can also add things such as flax seed, there are plenty of simple recipes online. If the color of the juice prevents her from drinking it, add food coloring. Smoothies are also a great way of disguising foods. You can make these with a blender. Just use some milk or yogurt and then add whatever fruit you want, bananas, blue berries, peaches, strawberries....pretty much any fruit. This a great source of calcium and vitamins from the fruit. You can also add peanut butter to the milk and a banana. This is a yummy peanut butter, banana smoothie and the peanut butter is a great source of protein! You should also look into something called Juice Plus. It is a vitamin supplement for kids.
With that being said, I believe that children need to learn that they have to eat the meal that is provided for them,that is their only option.I know it is very difficult "forcing" your child to eat foods when they don't want to. It is usually not that they don't like any other foods,more that they don't want to try new things. They eat what they know out of comfort. I know it may sound a bit harsh, but if you offer them the new food without giving in and always providing them with a backup when they don't eat what you offer them, they will eventually eat what you give them. Trust me, it will not take too long! Kids eat when they are hungry. The hardest part will be staying strong and not giving in, especially when she has a meltdown!! Which she probably will...... but she will calm down and eat when she is hungry and ready. Right now, she knows that she does not have to try the new food b/c you will always be there with the food she likes when she refuses. Why would she try something new?? Kids are smarter than we give them credit for. They know how to work us! You need to teach her that she has one option for her meal, what you have provided, and she needs to eat it or be hungry. It may take a little while to get it, (b/c she is used to you giving in and giving her the food she wants)but she will, and believe me, she will not starve! Stay strong, you can do it! The earlier you teach this lesson, the better!!
A.P. answers from Panama City on February 18, 2008
Get the Jessica Sienfeld cookbook called Deceptively Delicious, I started cooking out of it for my three year old and she loves it and now I know she is getting all her veggies and fruits in the foods I make her! :-) check it out and try it
P.E. answers from Panama City on February 17, 2008
PUT HER FOOD ON THE TABLE.SHE HAS NO CHOICE. EAT IT OR NOTHING
NO SNACKS. SHE'LL GET HUNGRY AND EAT. SHE WON'T STARVE TO DEATH. MY MOM DID IT TO USi'LL EAT ANYTHIG BUT LIVER AND DON'T CARE FOR FISH DUE TO A FEAR OF COKING ON BONES.
DAD WAS FROM THE DEPRESSION ERA AND TAUGHT US THE VALUE OF FOOD AND NOT TO OVER EATING.
W.T. answers from Tallahassee on February 18, 2008
I have a funny story for you. I have two sons, the second son is very different from the first, and they are six years apart. Alex was about two when he got very picky and I was worried too. I went to the local steak house to eat one day and told him he had to eat some green beans (that he likes) before he could have anything else. Therefore, I got him a small plate of green beans and he sat there crying the whole time we ate and would not eat the green beans to get something else. When we finished eating I had the server (who still talks about that when we come in) put them in a box to go. When we got home, he still did not want them until about ten that night and I warmed them up and he ate them and then I let him have some pizza we had in the refrigerator. I have not had any more problems with him eating at least a spoonful to get whatever else he wants. I know kids will try us but we fail them if we give in to what they want (we are the parents not them - we know best what is good for them) even if we think they will go hungry - they won't. He still likes green beans and eats them all the time and now he will eat broccoli, collards, peas, mushrooms, and butterbeans. He still will not eat tomatoes.
W. - working mother of two
D.B. answers from Jacksonville on February 25, 2008
I would ignore this and feed her what she will eat. Every once in a while, I would make something special for myself, and really ham up enjoying it. Pretty soon she will ask to try it, and then her choices will open up.
Do not worry too much about this .
N.J. answers from Daytona Beach on February 18, 2008
I am in the same boat right now. I also have a terribly picky eater who is two years old. He also happens to be very thin and I get comments all the time that "your son is so small". My doctor says that he is naturally thin because he has thin parents and I don't need to worry. Just to ease my mind I took him for a blood test to make sure that he was not deficient in anything. It turns out that he is totally healthy. My advice is that you speak to your doc and get a blood test just to be sure that your little one is doing okay. Ultimately, if she has energy and seems happy, she's probably fine. My mother told me that when I was two, I was just as picky as my son and now I'm a vegetarian and I live off of vegetables. They outgrow the "pickyness" - I've read that it is their way of asserting their independence - by saying "No" to everything. I guess we just have very independent children :)
H.L. answers from Tallahassee on February 23, 2008
Okay A., I have read a lot of what these parents say and out of all of them I have to agree with Mrs Billi Jo S. It seems harsh but my daughter is 17 and my son is 15, I also have 2 4 year old twins and a 5 year old niece that I help raise. You have to find things that work as a whole not just 1. Don't cater to her or you might as well plan to do so for the rest of her life and when you decide to have more children you will be doing it for them as well. Do you really have time to make 5 separate dinners to cater to everyone (not saying you will have 4 or 5 more children, just an example)?? It is time to take control, when my daughter was 2 years old the doctor said when she is hungry she will eat, just make sure she is getting her vitamins. You know what she was right. When my kids were hungry they ate what was put in front of them. As they got older I made a "one bite rule" Take one bite and if you don't like it then you never have to eat it again and wow that rule rocks. Now my daughter will eat foods that were a fight to get her to eat (example Orange Chicken, now that is one of her fav. foods).
Once again I will say this, parents today over analyze parenting. Go back to the basics and ask yourself, What would my parents have done???