Feeding A Picky Eater: The Do’s and Don’ts
If you’re the parent of a picky eater, you know how challenging it can be to get them to eat healthy foods. It seems like they are always saying “no” to everything you put in front of them. This blog post will discuss some tips for feeding picky eaters. We will talk about the do’s and don’ts of picky eating, and we will give you some ideas for healthy foods that your child may be more likely to eat. Keep reading for helpful advice!
The Dos of Feeding a Picky Eater:
Let Them Express Their Dislike For Things
If your picky eater is verbal, you may be able to get an idea of what they’re thinking by asking them questions such as “what is it that you don’t like about this?” or “would you like to try a bite?” If they are still learning to communicate, observe their body language. If they make a face or turn away when you offer them something new, chances are they aren’t too keen on it.
When your child does express a dislike for a food, rather than forcing them to eat it, let them know that they don’t have to eat it if they don’t want to. However, also explain that the same rule doesn’t apply to all foods. For example, if your picky eater doesn’t want to eat their carrots, that’s fine. But, if they don’t want to eat their dinner as a whole, they may not get dessert.
By allowing them to express their dislike and still providing structure, you’ll find that picky eating habits are less likely to become a problem.
Lead By Example
If you want your picky eater to try new things, then you need to be willing to do the same. Lead by example and show them that trying new foods can be fun. Eat a variety of foods yourself and let them see you enjoying it. This will open their mind up to the idea of trying something new.
Another way to lead by example is to be adventurous with your own food choices. If you are always eating the same bland foods, picky eaters will think that trying new things is not worth it. But if they see you enjoying a wide variety of foods, they will be more willing to do the same.
Offer a variety of foods.
One of the best things you can do when feeding a picky eater is to offer them a variety of foods. This will allow them to try new things and expand their palate.
One way to broaden a picky eater’s palate is to introduce them to new foods disguised as new dishes like the ones they like. For example, if your child likes macaroni and cheese, try serving it with a different type of sauce or mix in some vegetables.
Don’t be afraid to get creative with your cooking either. There are plenty of recipes out there that are both tasty and nutritious and can be tailored to fit any picky eater’s tastes.
One of the best things you can do for picky eaters is to have a routine. Try to have meals and snacks at around the same time every day. This will help your picky eater know when to eat and what to expect. It is also a good idea to set up a place for meals and snacks. This will help your picky eater feel more comfortable and know where to sit down at the table.
Have a schedule in which you have three meals and three snacks planned for the day. Meals and snacks should be served at the scheduled intervals. Mealtimes should end after 30 minutes, while snack times should last 20 minutes. Just tidy up the table. If a kid is hungry, they will eat what is required within that time frame.
Have fun with food
One of the best ways to get your picky eater to try new foods is to have fun with them. Cook their favorite dishes in a way that’s new and exciting. Maybe add a new sauce, or use different ingredients to change the flavor profile. Whatever you do, make sure cooking is enjoyable for both you and your picky eater.
Another great way to get your picky eater to try new foods is to let them help with the cooking process. This can be as simple as letting them pick out their own toppings for a dish or allowing them to stir the ingredients together. Allowing your picky eater to be involved in the cooking process will make them more likely to try the food they helped create.
Serve the meal on attractive plates with colorful spoons and glasses. Give your food items funny and interesting names that will pique their interest. Arrange the dishes in a circle, then a triangle, and finally in a butterfly formation. It’s an easy method to brighten your child’s face.
The Don’ts of Feeding a Picky Eater:
Don’t bribe your child with food.
One common mistake that parents make is bribing their children with food. They think that if they offer their child a cookie or some other type of food, they will be more likely to eat what is on their plate. However, this usually backfires and only makes picky eating worse. The child learns that they can get what they want by being picky and refusing to eat what is served.
Don’t allow them to eat the same food every meal.
When a child becomes picky about what they eat, their menu shrinks down. It’s all too easy to get caught up in the game of trying to find just one more menu item and the kid demanding that for every meal. Allow only their favorite dishes on a weekly basis at first. Rotate their menu every few days.
The goal is to make sure they are getting various nutrients in their diet while also not growing tired of the same options. If you can keep them interested in food, they’ll be more likely to eat it.
Don’t let them snack in between meals
One of the best ways to get a picky eater to eat their meal is by not letting them snack in between. This will help them be hungry and more likely to eat what’s on their plate.
If they are really starving, give them a small snack such as some grapes or carrot sticks but make sure that it’s not too much, or they will lose their appetite.
Another tip is not to let them drink water or any other drinks an hour before meals as this can make them feel full and less likely to eat.
Do not hesitate to ask for help
If you are struggling to get your picky eater to try new foods, do not hesitate to ask for help from a professional. A registered dietitian can help you come up with a plan to get your child to eat a variety of foods. They can also offer suggestions on how to make meals more appealing and provide support if you are feeling frustrated.
If you are not sure where to start, there are many resources available online and in books. Start by looking for recipes that your picky eater will enjoy. You can also look for tips on how to make meals more appealing. There are a variety of strategies that you can try, so do not be afraid to experiment until you find something that works for your family.
Consider also consultations. They are really beneficial, as many parents contact me for assistance and subsequently return relieved and pleased because they now understand what to worry about and what not to worry about. They also understand how to deal with this developmental period in a way that is conducive to their child’s growth.
Most importantly, do not give up! It may take some time and patience, but you can eventually get your picky eater to try new things. Just remember to be supportive and positive throughout the process.
The Really BIG Secret to Feeding a Picky Eater:
Picky eating is normal. It’s a phase that most kids go through, and there are ways to manage it without losing your cool. The best thing you can do is be patient, be supportive, and keep offering new foods. With time and patience, your picky eater will eventually come around. And in the meantime, know that you’re not alone – picky eating is more common than you think. So take a deep breath, and relax. You’ve got this!