11 answers

My 3 Year Old Doesn't Eat Very Much

My 3 year old doesn't eat regularly. We try to make her sit down with us and she will. But she won't eat very much. The stuff she does eat isn't that healthy. How can I change this because i don't think she is very healthy. She has been getting sick alot. I need to change this. Can anyone help me find a way to get my daughter to eat more healthier foods???

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Hi S.! I have the same problem with my 2 1/2 year old boy. He justs wants candy and cookies and chocolate milk! I am thankful for the nutripals bars, they are packed with vitamins and fiber. They are expensive but worth every penny-the best place to get them is Wal-Mart. Also give them vitamins, my son likes the gummies. Also peanut butter, fruit pop-sicles, cheese, bananas and ovaltine. I hope it works and if you have any advice for me let me know! Take care

More Answers

Hey S.!
I have a 3 yr old doing the exact same thing (for about the last 6 mo) after the 1st couple of months I got concerned and took him to the dr. She said keep little snacks around and out. I use grapes, raisins, carrots, granola bars(quaker has some w/ a little choc. in it he thinks they are candy bars) Cheese sticks. I also use pediasure which is packed w/ nutrients for little ones and vitamins everyday. Anything that is easy for little hands on the go. My guy is so busy he does not want to sit for a long time. I make him sit w/ us at dinner the 1st 10-15 min trying something we are having even if it is 5-6 bites I know he tried it. I think you should pick your battles and as long as they are getting the nutrition they need why make a huge scene at the dinner table w/ them screaming and crying choking down food. Sam will sometimes stand up to it also what ever works as long as they are not losing weight there is no reason for concern.

Although as mothers we are made to worry, this is one that you shouldnt worry too much about. My son was the same way, after running to every doc I could, I finally listened to their advice. Kids go thru different stages and this stage will pass like the rest. First my son wouldnt eat ANY meat, then he just wouldnt eat anything but junk food. It all passed and he's nice and healthy. If you are still worried, try some childrens vitamins, until this phase passes.

Hi S.! I have the same problem with my 2 1/2 year old boy. He justs wants candy and cookies and chocolate milk! I am thankful for the nutripals bars, they are packed with vitamins and fiber. They are expensive but worth every penny-the best place to get them is Wal-Mart. Also give them vitamins, my son likes the gummies. Also peanut butter, fruit pop-sicles, cheese, bananas and ovaltine. I hope it works and if you have any advice for me let me know! Take care

Hi S.. My name is C. and i have a 2 and 1 year old with the same problem. I've gotten advice against this, but i give my girls healthy snacks during the day and leave them where they can get them when they want them, that way I know they are eating some healthy things. If she won't eat carrot sticks or apple slices, try those little Austin crackers. My girls love them. They have peanut butter and cheese in them. Hope I helped. If you hear of something better please let me know.

This is a common thing with 2-3 year olds... they are just on the go so much it's hard to stop and eat! It will get better, but in the meantime what helped us was to have healthy snacks prepared that are easy to "graze".

Here's a link to an article with a lot of great tips: http://www.askdrsears.com/html/3/T030800.asp

Good luck!

In my house it goes like this: I am not a short order cook, this is not burger king and you can't have it your way. Nobody in this house starves unless they choose to. I make healthy meals...that's what they get to eat. They either eat it or they go hungry. If they want cookies, cakes, chips or the like, then they have to eat all of their food first. If all you cook is healthy, balanced meals then that's all they get to eat. You can't eat it for her and she will not starve herself...when she gets hungry enough she will eat. Toddlers often go through a phase where it seems that they never eat and parents tend to worry. As long as she's not losing a bunch of weight and she seems otherwise healthy, don't worry. They usually manage to nibble just enough to keep themselves nutritionally on track. The biggest thing to worry about is if they're getting enough iron and the doctor can check that for you. You might also decide to put her on a chewable multi-vitamin. As long as she's not loseing weight, seems to have plenty of energy and isn't lethargic or passing out, she should be ok though. If you want her to change her eating habbits then you have to change your cooking habbits. Another things you might do too is let her make a few choices...let her pick what kind of fruit she eats, let her pick the vegetable...give her a choice between 2 different kinds. "would you like peas or corn" "would you like an apple or a banana" If she's involved in choosing parts of the meal or helping in some of the preperation, then she might get interested in eating a little bit more.

I can understand why you are concerned. I would be too if my child didn't want to eat. From what you are describing it sounds like she does want to eat, but only eat the things that she thinks are yummy.
One thing my friends mom did was take all of the junk out of the house. No chips,no cookies, no soda, none of it. This was for her youngest son. They are both such healthy adults now. I agree with the food choices, sometimes it is just a power thing. And when they choose not to eat, then they have to accept the consequences (being hungry later) I also had this worry with my son about that age. Our peds doc told us to do a food journal for him. Just to watch over a week and see that it will probably even it self out with light and heavy eating days.

Good luck. I know it is frustrating when kiddos extert their indpendance...

My oldest child (6) has been like this since he was 3, so I completely feel your pain. As long as her doctor says she is healthy, I wouldn't be overly concerned.

Like some of the other moms have siad, try not to keep junk food in your house, or at least, keep it where she cannot get it. I keep junk food over the stove cabinet and the kids know that is there, and they also know that they will be in huge trouble if they climb up on the stove to get it, so they forget about it most of the time. Also granola bars, gummys, grapes, nuts and bite sized veggies make great snacks and are healthy too. Both of my children love raw veggies such as carrots, celery and broccoli and are content to snack on them when they have the munchies.

As for meal times, I am not a short order cook either. The kids have what the adults have for dinner and they either eat it, or they're out of luck. One trick to that (and it sounds horribly mean but I guarntee that you won't have to do this more than once or twice) is to put the plate in front of her and let her know that is what she is to eat. If she doesn't eat it for dinner, you will warm it up for a snack, if she doesn't eat it then, you'll warm it up for breakfast, if not for breakfast, then she can have it for lunch (etc, etc)

I wish you all the luck, picky eaters can try anyones patience!

1 / 3
Required Fields

Our records show that we already have a Mamapedia or Mamasource account created for you under the email address you entered.

Please enter your Mamapedia or Mamasource password to continue signing in.

Required Fields

, you’re almost done...

Since this is the first time you are logging in to Mamapedia with Facebook Connect, please provide the following information so you can participate in the Mamapedia community.

As a member, you’ll receive optional email newsletters and community updates sent to you from Mamapedia, and your email address will never be shared with third parties.

By clicking "Continue to Mamapedia", I agree to the Mamapedia Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.