The Wacky Eating Habits Of A Toddler

The Wacky Eating Habits Of A Toddler

Once your child begins to​ leave the world of​ baby food behind, meal times can be a​ roller coaster ride. Toddlers are notorious for being fickle and picky eaters. But, how you handle your toddler’s eating habits at​ this age can have an​ impact on their eating habits for life.

Toddlers thrive on routine, including mealtime routines. When you disrupt this routine, it​ can wreak havoc. Unfortunately, sometimes this need for routine means that your toddler wants to​ eat the same food at​ every meal for six weeks. Don’t obsess about this, but do continue to​ introduce new foods. For instance, if​ the favorite is​ macaroni and cheese, you might try switching the menu to​ the same macaroni noodles but with a​ little butter instead of​ cheese sauce. Then add some grapes or​ apple slices, and see how it​ goes. Lie about the name if​ you need to​ (this is​ macaroni and butter cheese, yum!), but offer some alternatives.

My experience has been that alternatives will only be tolerated if​ the rest of​ the routine is​ maintained. So, I never try to​ get a​ toddler to​ eat a​ brand new food in​ a​ restaurant. Only in​ the privacy of​ my home, where she can sit in​ her usual seat, at​ her usual time will I offer some new food. The main point here is​ that you must continue to​ offer other foods. if​ you are content to​ let them munch on French fries and mac and cheese forever, they may never be willing to​ try new foods.

One of​ the best ways to​ get your toddler to​ try new foods is​ to​ eat them yourself. My daughter wants anything I’m eating if​ I haven’t offered it​ to​ her. So, when she asks to​ try it, I grudgingly give her a​ few bites of​ my food, making sure she understands that I was really enjoying it, but am willing to​ share. After a​ couple of​ days of​ this, she is​ ready to​ eat the same food, calling it​ her own.

Don’t lose hope- nutritionists say that most children get a​ fairly well rounded diet if​ one is​ offered to​ them. Just find the healthy foods they will eat, and offer those more often than the less healthy ones. But, keep trying those new foods so that your child is​ reminded that there are more things to​ eat than macaroni and cheese!

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