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  1. #1
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    Default Fussy toddler

    So my ds1 is now 20 months and has always been pretty fussy with food but is gradually getting worse. Initially I was trying not to get stressed and hope that he will eventually grow out of it but I'm starting to worry he won't!
    He point blank refuses to eat any normal food and won't even try it. If I offer him something he just hands it back or throws it on the floor straight away. Even things I know he would probably like such as a chunk of pizza for example, he won't even think about trying it. Up to now I've taken the attitude of constantly offering things and hoping he will try them. He used to if distracted but now he won't try them. So although he's 20 months he still lives off pouches and jars of baby food (trust me I tried to give him homemade purées etc but they all ended in the bin). Although not ideal I figured he's at least getting some nutrients such as veg and meat. However now he's stopped eating most of those and now only wants to eat fruit purées and toast with cheese spread or peanut butter. He used to go through liking one fruit for a while stages but now there's nothing he will eat fresh fruit wise.
    I'm pretty much at the end of my tether with him as I can't see how to get him to eat anything. I've started to get strict and not offer him the things he likes in the hope he will be hungry and give in. However it doesn't seem to be working and I'm worried he's going to suffer from not eating much. Is he too young for this technique? What else can I try?!

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    I totally feel you.

    Have you tried veggies with melted cheese?
    Cheese on its own?
    Roasted veggies?
    Steak marinated?
    Kids ravioli?

    Kids won't let themselves starve....

    Fruit is good, diary is good. Meat is important also.

    Have you seen a paed? Is your child happy? Bubbly? Losing weight? Gaining? Etc

    I know how you feel, trust me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nafsika View Post
    I totally feel you.

    Have you tried veggies with melted cheese?
    Cheese on its own?
    Roasted veggies?
    Steak marinated?
    Kids ravioli?

    Kids won't let themselves starve....

    Fruit is good, diary is good. Meat is important also.

    Have you seen a paed? Is your child happy? Bubbly? Losing weight? Gaining? Etc

    I know how you feel, trust me.
    Thanks for the reply. He's very happy, full of energy and maintains his weight ok so that's why I've not been too bothered. It's just now I'm getting so frustrated as running out of things he will eat and he's just getting worse. He used to eat wheetabix or porridge for breakfast, now he has a fruit pouch and half a yoghurt if I'm lucky. For lunch it's half slice of toast with another fruit pouch or yogurt. On a really good day i might get 1/2 jar of veg/meat baby food in him. As for veggies with cheese etc the problem is he won't touch anything new. I know he will probably like things but he won't try and just throws a tantrum like we are trying to poison him! Oh the joys of toddlers!

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    This is common at this age I think...they can get very fussy.

    Do you give him a choice? Ie. Would you like toast or porridge for breakfast? Part of it could be a need for him to have some control over his life so giving him two options you're happy with him having might help. Also when introducing something new serve it alongside something you know he likes.

    Remember to model good eating habits yourself, so sit down for meals together and let him see you enjoying a wide variety of foods.

    Certain kids can starve themselves but if you are happy with his weight and he is happy and energetic I wouldn't worry too much at this stage.

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    Dd is 2.5 and I can count on my fingers what she will eat. Bugger all fruit/veg/meat. I don't know how she survives but she does.

    So no advice just sympathy.

    My mum said it's her revenge as I was dreadfully fussy growing up too.

    Like you I keep offering, trying so hard not to get upset or frustrated, in the hope that things will change. Funnily enough she'll eat play doh that she says are veggies lol

    I found the mighty toddler by robin barker and give peas a chance reassuring books.

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    What if you offer the fruit pouch/toast alongside something new but make no mention of it, he can fling it or whatever, but it's no big deal. He might eventually work himself up to having a try of something new? Do you all eat together? My first thought is to serve the fruit pouch or toast and then chuck something off your plate onto the tray as well. Remember to smile and act like your enjoying your food, but you do not care if he eats it or not. Take the stress out, for all of you. I'm sorry if you've tried that. You could even visit the GP and ask for a referral to a speech pathologist, just to check and make sure he hasn't got something underlying happening that's making him adverse to new foods/textures?

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    I'd just like to add I've gone down the strict path with my dd but it hasn't resulted in anything. She is strong willed and stubborn (like I was).

    I battled my mother for YEARS over dinner and I'm personally determined not to repeat that.

    I usually do a platter at dinner with an assortment of things, small bite size pieces, she can eat as little or as much or try anything that she wants with no pressure. There is always a few bites of something she will eat, and a few things that I hope she will try. Sometimes she will have a bite and say I don't like that, and it's fine. Sometimes she shocks me and will eat something..... but mostly not.

    Good luck, you are not alone xx

    ETA: The most vegies she will eat is if she helps/watches me prep dinner, she pulls up and stands on a chair, and helps me assemble vegies or meat and will try it or snack on it. This is how I've got dd to like carrot and cucumber. A small victory.
    Last edited by Little Miss Sunshine; 04-08-2015 at 14:56.

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    Is he BFing or having a lot milk? Maybe reduce the amount so he's hungrier?

    I agree with the poster that said giving them a choice. My DD went through a phase around that age and she basically ate baked beans at lunch and dinner as just wouldn't eat anything else! It lasted about a month with me thinking she would grow out of the phase before I told her if she wanted BB, she had to eat some veggies first. I just stuck to my guns and a few days later she started eating veggies again. I didn't give her heaps, made it attainable for her, so 3 bits of carrot before she could have her beans, next day added some cauli, then pumpkin the next etc etc.

    They say it can take offering something new 20 times (I think!) before a child will try it. I know that's true with mine. My son is 6 and he still sometimes refuses to try new things!

    My only other thought is a star chart? Both mine have responded well to those. They get to choose something they want and have to get a star for however many days you decide before they earn it.

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    The comment kids won't let themselves starve is false. If there is sensory/anxiety issues at play children have the will to simply not eat and can lose weight. I'm not saying this is the case but does your child display sensory or anxiety traits?

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    Default Fussy toddler

    Food aversions aside, he may just be scared of the texture of the whole food as he is only used to purées and soft toast , his natural instinct is to probably not eat it as he is not sure how

    This is the age where they do get set in their ways so you may just have to start weaning him off the pouches like he was a baby and just gradually offer more whole food and less purées until no more purées at all

    As others have said its great if you can share food and eat together so he can see you eating and watch you guys enjoying your food - make a bowl of fruit salad ( small soft easy to pick up pieces ) every morning for morning tea and sit down and eat it with him, it might take a week or 2 for him to even go and pick up something to try but he needs to see you eat it regularly , then do a cheese and raw veggie plate for afternoon tea and try the same thing , it will take a few weeks to get his confidence up and yes he may play or throw it for a while but you have to be consistent , he should be eating the same dinners and lunches as you are so he knows what's "normal" and safe

    At the fruit shop make sure you let him help you pick the fruit and veggies, let him see them in their raw whole forms and know all their names , make food fun at this age not a chore, they love learning and counting so make a game of shopping for food and let him pick which veggies and fruits he wants to give him some control

    Instead of cheese spread on his toast, try avocado mixed with boiled egg or feta cheese to start getting him used to new flavours , try almond or macadamia nut butter instead of peanut all the time, have you tried giving him lamb cutlets to gnaw/suck on or chicken legs?
    Last edited by Elijahs Mum; 04-08-2015 at 16:18.

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