Toddlers: 12 - 24 Months

How do you get your toddler to EAT?!?!?!

DD does not eat. I try everything. Its nuts, she is just so picky.  After making meal after meal that she just throws on the floor, we have resulted to asking her what she WILL eat. Soup? "no". This? "no" apple? "no". Cracker? "no. Fishies? "no". ARGH.

So, what do you do to get LO to eat? I really try hard to get her enough veggies, protien, good carbs, ect. but she is so picky and I waste so much food/money on her "no"s.  I have Vit drops, and Pedi shakes, but that stuff isn't as good as real food, ya know?

Re: How do you get your toddler to EAT?!?!?!

  • are you giving her a fork or spoon?

     

    we found DS eats much better and more if he's eating the same things we are, the same way (in a bowl, or on a plate)

  • I go for the low pressure approach.  I put a variety of veg, starch and protein on her tray.  She eats what she wants and if she only drinks her milk and takes a few bites, than that's what I let her do.  I have found that the more I pressure her, the more she either fights back, or starts to think it's a game and begins throwing food on the floor.  If I just sit down and enjoy my meal next to her, she usually ends up eating a decent amount.
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  • has she always been like that? Or just recently?

    DS went through a phase at about 16 months for about 2 weeks where he seriously ate nothing.. it was awful, then all of a sudden he was hungry again. Just keep trying  & dont get upset or be forceful & hopefully she will come around. Otherwise, definitely talk to the pedi. :) 

  • I don't ask my LO what she wants to eat, asking gives her the option of replying with "no".  I make her whatever we are having and if she chooses to eat then great, if not then she can make up for it at the next meal.  I've talked about this with our pedi several times because she has gotten much pickier with dinner and he said the way I'm going about it is best (in his opinion) just because I don't want to become a short order cook and making her a million things to get her to eat.  If you only give them what they want then it may end up not being the best things for them since its human nature to crave things like sweet, salty etc.  I give her a fork and let her do it herself, that helps out a lot lately but she has a problem with taking fistfulls and SHOVING food in her mouth, so we need to watch her with that.  Basically she does great with breakfast, lunch is usually ok and dinner is hit or miss but she is in no way under nourished and if she decides not to eat at dinner (which has happened plenty of times) then she eats a lot in the morning.
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  • I find that the only way I can get DS to eat a full meal is to let him play with a toy or two and then shove a bite in his mouth when he is really engrossed in the toy.

    Or if I am really desperate, I will shove random bites in his mouth when he is playing on the floor. 

    Not great table manners and probably bad habits, but I would rather he get his nutrition at this stage. 

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  • My DD is doing the same thing.  She is 21 months old.  She was a really good eater up until a few months ago.  She has her own plate, bowl, and utensils.  I tend to always give her some protein, starch, and vegetable and she eats what she wants.  If she choses not to eat, then she doesn't eat.  It is really hard not to react or pressure her but I figure this is a phase and she will eat when she is hungry. 

    Novelty seems to work well too.  I give her a different fork or spoon to try.  DH and I try to eat the same meal as her.

  • I feel your pain.

     

    My daughter lives on avocados, shredded cheese, and mandarin oranges. Not because I don't give her anything else; those are the only things she'll eat! Sure, SOMETIMES she'll eat other stuff, but usually no. Sad

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  • Well, every meal is different.  Sometimes he just doesn't want to sit, so I figure out a way for him to eat and walk around at the same time. Sometimes he wants to self feed.  Sometimes he wants a spoon.  Sometimes he really wants what's on my plate even though it's exactly the same as what's on his plate.  Sometimes he won't touch a food until I offer him a bite off of my fork.  Experimentation is key.  I always offer a few different things so that he can pick and choose.  I never force the issue and I try to remember that toddlers just aren't that into it sometimes and that's ok.  Make sure you are offering food 5-6 times a day.  They are more grazers/snackers.
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  • I try to have a couple of different things at each meal (corn & green beans, etc.)  However, I only fix DD the same thing we are eating, unless it is something incredibly spicy or seasoned that is just not "toddler friendly." 

    I talked to my pedi about her picky eating and he said the worst thing you could do is continue to offer different options.  You give her the food, and if she doesn't eat, then she will begin to learn that she will get hungry.  

    I have also learned that the more I tell DD to do something, the more she refuses.  I just try to ignore her when she acts like that.

    Allie ~ 01/26/09 ~ 7 lbs, 9 oz ~ 20.75 in. & Amelia ~ 03/16/11 ~ 8 lbs, 1 oz ~ 21 in.

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  • image jennybeams:
    I go for the low pressure approach.  I put a variety of veg, starch and protein on her tray.  She eats what she wants and if she only drinks her milk and takes a few bites, than that's what I let her do.  I have found that the more I pressure her, the more she either fights back, or starts to think it's a game and begins throwing food on the floor.  If I just sit down and enjoy my meal next to her, she usually ends up eating a decent amount.

    This exactly.  The first couple of days he threw all of his food on the floor and I was a mess, but he understands now.  I offer 5-6 foods on his tray for each meal.

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