Your toddler may be developing leaps and bounds now. From his movements, speech and emotional response but he may be slowing down on food intake.
This is typical toddler behavior. They go through this phase as they now have preferences. The kid decides what he wants and will let you know. How? Oh, you’ll know alright…
So your kid is a picky eater. It’s not a bad thing and does not reflect wrongly of your parenting style. Do not fret as I will discuss on this post some solutions to this struggle and hopefully, you may get some tips that will help your child eat better and more.
How to Handle Picky Eaters
1. Respect your child’s hunger and fullness cues.
If they are not hungry, do not force a meal or snack. They can communicate and let you know if they want food. Forcing them to eat may develop a negative effect on how they view mealtimes.
2. Serve Small Portions
Do not overwhelm their little mouths. A variety of small portions are much better compared to that big slob of mashed potatoes.
They can easily chew and finish each portion without feeling too full from seeing the plate alone.
3. Minimize Distractions
From watching TV, using gadgets and toys. There’s plenty of ways for them to be distracted and not focus on eating. A great way to deal with this is to EAT AS A FAMILY. Let your kid sit and have his own place in the dining table.
This is also a great bonding moment for the whole family to discuss how their day went and simply for everyone to spend time together.
4. Get Creative on Food Presentation and Make It Fun!
Slice those carrots, make those bananas as ears, the raisins as eyes, broccoli as hair and so much more. We know how they love shapes and colors, right? So give them what they want and if you present it creatively, it will catch their attention and be interested enough to eat them all.
The spoon as airplane is a classic and has always been effectiv. Added with some swoosh and excitement. Make sure to do that too!
5. Set a Good Example
They are always watching you, momma. So reflect a good example on proper nutrition and even Table Manners. Finish your plate and show them how to eat specific foods and fruits.
6. This is one of the best tips ever that I have always applied in our home. Don’t cater to picky children by cooking them a different dish from what is already served for the family.
Because if you started this way, they will always ask and expect that special request to be granted.
It will save you so much time and effort to train the kids now. Do not tolerate and be firm about this!
7. Expose Them to New Foods
They are still exploring on the taste they prefer, on how they want it cooked and more. Provide choices and let them savor it for a few days. Do not introduce foods all at once for they will be confused and overwhelmed.
This is most likely to happen with sweets. They may like and love it too much that it trumps all else especially vegetables which of course comes bland after a delicious slice of cake and other sweet treats.
8. Remember their Favorites
Which vegetables passed their taste test? Take note of that and try to serve more foods with the same taste. Be bold and mixed it with other foods such as soup or toppings. Options are important for them to explore better and know more of what they prefer.
9. Being messy is okay as long as they learn how to eat independently
Mess and children are inevitable but it’s part of learning. Keep a close eye on what they pick and chew. They may be good muchets but their teeth are not as strong, so we need to be watchful of that. Soon, they will learn to eat on their own and even demand that they want food. Now!
This blog post is specially made for struggling parents who cook good food for their kids only to end up frustrated as they’re done after a few bites. I know how it feels, momma. But rest assured that you are not alone. As again, it’s a toddler thing. Part of their growing up and something we need to deal as parents.
Here’s a list of my helpful tips on the do’s and don’ts on feeding a picky eater.
- Respect your child’s hunger and fullness cues
- Minimize distractions
- Serve small portions
- Get creative on food presentation and make it fun!
- Don’t cater to picky children by cooking them a different dish from what is already served for the family.
- Expose them to new foods
- Remember their favorites
- Being messy is okay as long as they learn how to eat independently
Do these and observe your kid’s eating habits. Since it comes with age and their growth, you have to adjust also on their needs overtime.
If your kid is a picky eater do not blame yourself. Even with kids, to each his own applies as we can only do so much as parents. We know our kid’s best interest is always a priority and as long as you look for solutions to help them, you are doing great!
But I hope that you will be able to turn your kid to be more flexible and exploratory on his food choices soon as a picky eater adult may have its consequences for it may affect his behavior and perspective – health wise.
If the struggle have become troublesome and your kid may be suffering from health issues, it’s best of course to seek help of professionals to guide you on how to deal with the situation.
I hope that you find this helpful. If yes, please comment below and let’s exchange ideas on our kid’s eating habits. I would appreciate it if you can share this blog post too.