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Smarter Mom: Winning Over Picky Eaters

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If “ I hate milk!” or “I won’t eat the broccoli!” are common phrases in your household you’re not alone. Most kids—to a certain degree--are picky eaters.  Maybe they don't like the color of something, or the consistency, or perhaps they'll only eat sandwiches cut on a diagonal. Whatever it is, most parents have at least one complaint about the way their child eats. Luckily, it’s not as bad as most parents think and so-called picky eaters are getting just as many nutrients as non-picky eaters.  To combat picky eating, and restore some of your sanity, her are a few common picky eater complaints, and tips on combating them.

Refusing to eat his veggies. It's common for kids to refuse to eat their vegetables, or something else you've put on their plate for dinner. And it's also quite common for a fight to ensue, where you tell them they have to sit at that table till its all gone. (At least, that's what  my mom did to me.) Experts are saying a better tactic is to put the broccoli on their plates, as well as your own, and sit down and eat it. If they don't eat it, it's not the end of the world. Try again. You'll be surprised; before you know it your child may just voluntarily eat those dreadful veggies.  

Not hungry at dinner. Again, kids will be kids and if they're not hungry at 6:00p.m. don't force them to eat. Maybe they want to eat later or maybe they had too many snacks at 3:00, but don't force them. If everyone is eating at the table, they need to sit there too, and of course no desert. Odds are once they’re sitting there, they might join in the meal, anyway.

More choices. Your child might be using food to test your boundaries and their independence. So, give them choices that ultimately don't matter. Put two healthy choices in front of them, and let them decide what they want to eat. You win, because all their choices are healthy. They think they win, because they got to choose what to eat.

What do you do to get your kids to eat?

by on Mar. 31, 2011 at 12:00 AM
Replies (81-90):
by on Apr. 7, 2011 at 11:21 PM

Im so happy to say neither of my kids are picky eaters. If they don't THINK they will like something I always encourage them to at least try it, not making them eat it all.. At least they can say they tried, but they can't have a snack after dinner. huge no no if you don't eat all your dinner.

by on Apr. 8, 2011 at 12:48 AM

i make my daughter try out new things...if she tries it once and doesnt like it then she doesnt have to eat it again :-)  my son on the other hand ius a handful and very stubborn :-/  but he does love his broccoli so im not worried about him eating his vegetables :-) 

by on Apr. 8, 2011 at 6:18 AM

they say it takes up to 15 times (something crazy like that) before some kids will like something -- which is why I continue to offer it. 

by on Apr. 8, 2011 at 9:39 AM

Quoting Margo137:

they say it takes up to 15 times (something crazy like that) before some kids will like something -- which is why I continue to offer it. 

Thats interesting.

Of the grandchildren in my home we have had one who I referred to as  "helen Keller" because he would only eat off of the plates of others for about a yr.  Today he is pretty good about eting if he doesnt get too many snacks.

We had the child who would eat anything and everything, at 6 she LOVES Food network.

And we have a two yr old who would live on pizza and chips if he had it his way.

We are pretty careful with what we feed them and so far they are all healthy and growing:)

This is a good thread though, thank you.

How far you go in life depends on your being: tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving and tolerant of both the weak and strong.  Because someday in life you would have been one or all of these.  GeorgeWashingtonCarver




by on Apr. 8, 2011 at 9:40 AM

 My dd is super picky.  But I've cut down her snacking.  I try not to give her anything after 3:30.  That way she's hungry at dinner time and will eat (or at least try) anything I put in front of her.

by on Apr. 8, 2011 at 7:24 PM

mix in veggies in dishes they like to eat. An easy one is adding chopped up veggies to spaghetti sauce, or even in fruit smoothies! you can also puree certain veggies and use them when you bake.

by on Apr. 8, 2011 at 7:37 PM
I have had issues with picky eaters lately. I just stick to our rule that if you don't eat what you were given then you don't get anything else until the next meal. I never fix things they don't like so I know that they Are just seeing what they can get away with.
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by on Apr. 8, 2011 at 7:58 PM

I think my 4 year old is the king of all picky eaters......:)

by on Apr. 9, 2011 at 11:14 PM

I'm lucky my kids are food lovers.

I've also taught them well in that- if you don't eat, you don't eat.

I know that if they don't eat something, they'll live til next meal, and don't sweat it.  :)

by on Apr. 11, 2011 at 10:31 AM

I wouldn't say my son is too picky. He doesn't like onions or tomatoes, so when I have something that I put tomatoes in it. I put him some of it to the side and cook it separately.

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