Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Coping with a fuzzy eating toddler!

After having some experience with my 2 year old , i thought i should write an article on this wonderful topic which would benefit many mother like me who has almost tried every single way to make my kid eat some food . I use to get depressed which may sound a little weird but im sure im not the only one around here.

As babies grow into toddlers and begin eating table food, they often become fussy eaters. It is very normal to have a fight with toddlers everyday during the meal time because they don’t want to eat their food.

How to avoid all these struggles? Although im not a doctor , i guess i can share my 2 cents here , so that some of u could be benefitted out of it.

Here it goes :

  • You can think of putting your toddler in a daycare , for atleast couple of hours at the beginning , that way they'll learn socializing and other good habits.

  • Some kids will tend to eat atleast a little , on seeing other kids eating during their meal time.

  • At home, you can make meal-time a family affair.Although it sounds impossible in this busy world, you can try it out atleast 2 to 3 days a week.

  • Do not offer your toddler any drinks or snacks if he is too fuzzy about eating. This will definitely make them hungry during the meal-time.

  • Cook one healthy meal (which has a maindish-some veggiesor meat-soup- yogurt/Milk)for everyone in the familyand offer it in a plate to your toddler . Your toddler will fight with you at first, but eventually will realize and try to eat. Do not offer any alternatives.

  • But make sure you prepare a healthy cum delicious snack that he will probably like it. Dont try to introduce too many new food at a time.Just go one-by-one.

  • A toddler's tastebud is very sensitive, at the same time, they tend to eat only when they are hungry. So do not force or bribe them .

  • Stick to the routine and serve the meal at same time every day as far as possible. Because some kids are very punctual (like mine). They eat atleast one meal exactly on time, if you make it a little late they become hyper-active and become very cranky in hunger.

  • Learn to admit the fact : that toddlers growth during this phase is very slow.therefore they will have only limited apetite. Hence they can eat only a little, and the very little nutrition itself is enough. -- this is a scientific fact and you may refer it with any of your pediatrician. THE GOOD NEWS IS THEY WONT STAY LIKE THIS FOREVER.THEY WILL EVENTUALLY CHANGE.

  • Be creative with food. If your child does not like eggs, try giving them egg custard or beat the eggs real fluffy and add finely grated veggies to it and bake them in tiny cookie tray that way they might try to eat them. Basically toddlers likes colorful food with different shapes like toys...

  • Call these finger foods playful names that a two-year-old can appreciate, such as:
    apple moons (thinly sliced)
    avocado boats (a quarter of an avocado)
    banana wheels
    broccoli trees (steamed broccoli florets)
    carrot swords (cooked and thinly sliced)
    cheese building blocks
    egg canoes (hard- boiled egg wedges)
    little O's (o-shaped cereal)
    Place the food on an easy-to-reach table. As your toddler makes his rounds through the house, he can stop, sit down, nibble a bit, and, when he's done, continue on his way. These foods have a table-life of an hour or two.

  • Dip it with fun : Young children think that immersing foods in a tasty dip is pure fun (and delightfully messy). Some possibilities to dip into:
    cottage cheese or tofu dip
    cream cheese
    fruit juice-sweetened preserves
    peanut butter, thinly spread
    pureed fruits or vegetables
    yogurt, plain or sweetened with juice concentrate
    Those dips are equally nutritious and will serve the purpose.
  • Last but not the least , PATIENCE is very very important and you gotto have tons & tons of them!!! :) do not get discouraged or feel bad or get angry when the child rejects your hard work. Its just a child. So you need to be more patient and self motivated.

Hope this will help moms like me.Good luck with your toddler!

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