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What age do you teach children about proper diet?

My boy is a terrible eater. He would run out from the table, say things are yuck, cry, wipe his tongue into whatever possible, even throw up. If there was something he does not "approve of". He's only 4yo. Sneaking good foods into his diet does not always work. Wondered, when should I start talking more on the subject with him. Any ideas? Thanks


Asked by kujus04 at 3:24 PM on Mar. 8, 2013 in Preschoolers (3-4)

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Answers (10)
  • Birth?

    Answer by ABeaverhausen at 3:29 PM on Mar. 8, 2013

  • Birth on. it helps to lead by example and keep those healthy foods as an everyday menu item. Good eating habits begin at home.

    Answer by KristiS11384 at 3:30 PM on Mar. 8, 2013

  • 6 months, when he started eating solids. Of course they will not understand the concept of nutrition at that age, but if you start them on good foods in the beginning there isn't a struggle to change their ways later.

    Answer by maecntpntz219 at 3:31 PM on Mar. 8, 2013

  • Birth on. I am a very picky eater and I admit I don't eat many healthy things but my 2 kids eat very healthy and love most all fruits and veggies. they eat almost everything I cook, there is a few times they won't eat something but I make them at least take a couple bites.

    Answer by LostSoul88 at 3:37 PM on Mar. 8, 2013

  • My 3 year old can't really understand it yet, but we do talk about it (and role-model healthy eating). And he's learning that there are times to eat healthy foods and other times when we can have treats or snacks... but we can't just eat treats and snacks!! It's not good for us. I think it might take years still for him to really understand why healthy eating is important, but we've been talking about it since he started eating. I have a picky eater too, and our rules are that he has to sit at the table and be polite. He is encouraged to eat, but it's his choice. If he tries something and doesn't like it, he can spit it into a napkin.

    It also sounds like there is a manners issue going on. A 4 year old is old enough to learn proper table manners. Yelling, crying, wiping his tongue on whatever and so on is NOT acceptable behavior. That is something you can teach him right now.

    Answer by Sebbiemama at 3:48 PM on Mar. 8, 2013

  • My 3yo loves to talk about it. Putting it action is another thing, lol. She likes healthy foods but of course likes sweets, too. She'll ask for a cookie, but she can usually be talked into a fruit instead. She told her teacher how much she loves vegetables and how they make her big and strong! I lol'd because she only eats broccoli and tomato. She gets the idea anyway!

    Answer by tessiedawg at 3:57 PM on Mar. 8, 2013

  • when they start eating at the table.

    my 4 year old will try anything once and eats pretty healthy. she knows which foods are healthy and which are not. we've never talked about nutrition beyond "cookies are a sometimes food", "no you cant have ice cream for lunch", and "veggies are so healthy!". we also lead by example (in front of the kids) and make sure we eat our veggies and limit our sweets. my almost 2 year old is a little more picky and doesnt get anything about nutrition but he still eats what he sees us eating. its just the norm in our house.

    Answer by okmanders at 5:09 PM on Mar. 8, 2013

  • also, your problem isnt that you need to talk about nutrition. your problem is that you let you son act like that at the table and "approve" of any meal. stop that now before its too late!

    Answer by okmanders at 5:10 PM on Mar. 8, 2013

  • From the time my daughter could talk, we would comment on how fruits and veggies are good for her, or sugary snacks are sometimes foods. I don't know how much she really took in. Last year in preschool, at age four, they did a unit on healthy foods and she was given a free plastic placemat with pictures of wholesome choices on it.

    Answer by Ballad at 7:02 PM on Mar. 8, 2013

  • DS eats everything. Sorry I can't help.

    Answer by Lindsay4Ambit at 12:54 AM on Mar. 12, 2013