Categorized | Food, Picky Eaters

Winning The Food Wars With Picky Eaters

It is normal for parents with picky eaters to have food fights at the table. Here are some ideas on what you can do to end them and make mealtime much more pleasurable for everyone.

Give Your Toddler Free Will

As a parent, it is your job to make sure your toddler eats healthy foods. However, nagging, getting angry or controlling what he puts in his mouth or how much food he should eat will only increase power struggle. Hold your tongue and let your toddler decide and serve himself. This will make him feel more in control and is more likely to reduce mealtime squabbles.

Provide Food Your Toddler Likes

Another technique to stop power struggles during mealtime is to serve at least one food you know your little one likes. For instance, if your toddler loves eating pasta, prepare that along with another dish such as vegetables. By doing this, you are ensured your toddler will eat well. Plus, he might even sample the “green stuff” next time. But, avoid short order cooking. If you made chicken noodle soup for dinner yet he opts for bread, resist the urge to whim up a bowl of cereal for him.

Try and Try Until You Succeed

Just because your toddler rejected the vegetable salad you made does not mean he will not eat it forever. According to studies, children naturally reject new foods. But, the more you serve a food, the more likely he will eat it. Serve a particular food several times a week and watch your little one chow down with gusto.

Let Your Toddler Get Hungry

It is okay to let your toddler get a little hungry (but not starving) before a meal. However, do give him light snacks throughout the day. Children are more willing to sit down to a table and eat different types of food if they are hungry, even foods they are hesitant to try.

Get Your Toddler Involve

Ask your child to help you plan and prepare meals. Have him choose between steamed carrots or baked potato wedges. Ask him what dessert he wants. Make him your Sous chef and ask him to wash the vegetables, mix ingredients or slice bananas with a plastic knife. The more invested your toddler is in the meal, the more likely he will eat it.

Control What You Can

You cannot force your toddler to eat, but you can control what foods are available. Keep junk foods and sugary beverages out of your pantry. Prepare a small bag with yummy snacks in advance. Serve smaller servings of less nutritious foods or make them a side dish.

Be A Role Model

Eat a varied diet yourself. If your toddler sees you eating healthy foods, he will want to copy mommy. In addition, if you do not want your toddler to scream at you because he does not want to eat his corns, curtail your own screaming as well.

Keep in mind that your toddler is in control over what he puts into his body. So take it easy and use these tips to make mealtimes enjoyable for your toddler and your family.

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