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My 4 yr old is very picky and wont her main course...

My 4 yr old has been this way for sometime now and it's starting to get frustrating, more so for my husband. We don't know what to do, he's threatened not to give her snack and to go to bed w/o eating dinner. She doesn't mind at all and will go to her room w/o eating. Or at times she will request for something different, like a corn dog. Now, if I were to serve rice, corn, chicken and a biscuit...she will only want to eat rice and biscuit. We got her put a piece of chicken in her mouth, but she refuses to eat it. She will NOT eat beef either. I mean the only things she will eat is; mac n' cheese (sometimes w/ weenie), corn dog, cereal, waffles, egg, yogurt, apples, rice, pizza, toast, baked potato, cup of noodles, plain pasta(no sauce or meat) and chicken nuggets. That's pretty much it. She wont touch anything else! We need some advice! I mean, today my husband and I had an argument over her not!

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Asked by PortraitGoddess at 11:53 PM on Jul. 23, 2010 in Preschoolers (3-4)

Level 1 (3 Credits)
Answers (6)
  • I think she eats a pretty balanced selection of food from what you described. Kids go through phases. You can't force her to eat, and you shouldn't punish her for not wanting to eat everything you eat. Just make her what you know she is going to eat. Choose your battles.

    Answer by beckie66 at 12:00 AM on Jul. 24, 2010

  • She may not need the extra calories come dinner time. A child needs about 40 calories per inch of Height, that's it. Don't power struggle over food, and don't give an afternoon snack if your worried.

    Then, sit her down with only the protein item on her plate first and ignore her ignoring it. She'll eat when she's hungry.

    Answer by lovinangels at 12:01 AM on Jul. 24, 2010

  • Thank you ladies :)
    It's more my husband that is doing the pushing. I can't take it anymore though, he doesn't seem to understand that she just doesn't like it right now. He thinks she's going to eat only that for the rest of her life, which I know is not the case...she will indeed grow out of this and explore other foods on her own. He was really upset talking about handing his own way whether I liked it or not. His plan was to not give her anything to eat, so that when dinner came around she would be hungry enough to eat. NOW, I do not agree with that at all. I will not tolerate it and so that's what led to us arguing today. He needs to clear his mind and realize she is ONLY 4 yrs old!! I think it's more of him wanting to be in control of the matter and it bugs him that he's not. But anyways I just had to vent a bit. It's just a frustrating situation.

    Comment by PortraitGoddess (original poster) at 12:31 AM on Jul. 24, 2010

  • We do the "eat what is served or go without."  Also they can't have seconds of their favorite stuff (ie the rice and bread) until they try everything on their plate.  The # of bites per age works well for veggies and we only put a few bites of meat when they go through these phases.  My oldes is and always has been a carb junkie.  She LOVES breads, pastas, rice, etc and getting her to eat meat is like pulling teeth but she really needs the protein.  So when she was a toddler/preschooler she had to eat her meat before she could get more of her favorite side.  She also couldn't care less about going to bed hungry.

    After a few days of no dinner she gave in and started eating what was served whether she said she liked it or not (low and behold she liked most of it).


    Answer by justanotherjen at 5:58 AM on Jul. 24, 2010

  • My son is stubborn. I offer him food...if he eats he eats. I know he will not starve. Usually if I nag..he refuses to eat. So I just tell him to eat what he wants.

    Answer by Mom2Just1 at 9:57 PM on Jul. 24, 2010

  • My daughter is 4 and just the opposite she usually just eats the meat and little bit of the sides- but lately everything is 4 cause she is 4 years old so I tell her 4 bites of taters or 4 bites of her veggies. That has helped. And even though my husband hates it she has ketchup on her plate for every meal I say as long as she eats I dont care what she has

    Answer by BriceAllisonMom at 1:01 PM on Jul. 26, 2010

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