my kid doesnt want to eat

February 20, 2009 2:56pm CST
hey my lotter I have a 3 year old daughter and I have encountered a problem that at this point is bothering me because not only makes me waste my time and patience but also my money in making healthy food for her. She now has a little mind of her own and decided that she doesnt want to eat any other food other than chips or rice, or pasta, some yogurts, and very little she eats of them. I often cook nice vergeterian food for us both, where I include pulses and veggies, sometime I allow myself to add some fish or meat to my stews just for her only to have a tremendously row over her not eating it and it all ends in the bin! At this point Im a little tired of asking around of what can I do about it, no even the doctor wants to help, telling me that kids are all the same and that i shouldnt worry, but shes is not eating properly how can I not worry!?!! oh well, so here Im trying to get some help on this, please help, any tips will be much appretiated. happy mylotting.!!
4 people like this
16 responses
• Ireland
20 Feb 09
well the first thing to do is get rid of everything sweet in the house, so she doesn't go snacking. Hunger is the best sauce, if she's hungry she will eventually try anything. Maybe just take small steps. She like rice and pasta, so maybe make a pasta salad, or chicken curry with rice. My mother has the most gorgeous recipe for a banana curry, it's very sweet and nutritious. We always had it as children and I never liked bananas... If you're interested in the recipe you can just pm me, I'm sure I'll find it somewhere! Also, use incentives. Like saying 'if you clear your plate every night you can pick a desert on Saturday' or something like that. Good luck, and don't worry, she's a toddler, it's part of her genes to have tantrums!!
20 Feb 09
lol oh please i like the sound of that banana curry! and yeah your right she just a toddler , its just worrying when u dont see them getting enough food,(we dont have sweets at home) but well i guess i just need to be patience and try to play with food a bit more. thanks very much :D
2 people like this
• Ireland
20 Feb 09
Your very welcome! I don't have kids so I don't have personal experience, but it sounds like your doing a great job with your daughter :) I'll add you as a friend now and I'll send you that recipe as soon as possible.
1 person likes this
@barehugs (8986)
• Canada
21 Feb 09
I am a Father, and Grandfather who helped to successfully raise 4 sons. I've never seen a child who wouldn't eat. Does your daughter eat anything or drink milk between meals. If she does, cut the milk and cookies between meals,give her water to drink instead of milk. Forget the vegetarianism until she gets back to normal eating. Never argue or fight with her over her meals. Make them a fun time for her. Give her very small portions to insure she cleans her plate. Don't worry that she will starve. Children seldom starve, but their parents worry that they will. She will eat if she is hungry. Your Job is to make sure she is hungry at mealtime. If shes not eat she's not hungry, and that is your fault. Do not feed her cookies, donuts,deep fried food, and other junk food. Stick with veggies,meats, fruits, and whole milk to drink. No pop or candy.
1 person likes this
22 Feb 09
oh dear no, I dont give her junk, in my house there is not cookies or sweets, nothing to tempt her with, she doesnt drink milk in between meals and my vegeterian dishes or stews also include meat and fish at time just for her. She is just stuborn I guess, but like all the others have said she will eat when shes hungry!mind you, my mum told me I was the fussiest eater ever at the same age!lol maybe it goes in her genes.
@stacyv81 (5904)
• United States
21 Feb 09
All kids go through this stage....#1 some times they just dont want to eat and sometimes they'll act like they havent eaten in years...lol #2 she is testing you...She is trying to see if you;ll give in...offer only what you want to give, if she refuses, fine, leave it there. She'll eat when she is hungry, offer no treats, if it gets too long put it in the fridge when she says shes hungry offer it again, when she refuses(cuz she will) say ok put back in Trust me you will not starve your kid.... If you fear for that get her some pediasure to make sure she gets the proper nutrients, she'll realize you arent playing (at which point depends on how stubborn she is) but it is CRUCIAL you do not give in! Trust me I had the most picky eater ever and now he is 5 and eats what I give him!! I have 2 others and they do the same! It is going to be hard for you, but I PROMISE!! it will pay off in the long run! I hope this helps u Dr's arent a lot of help in this situation! I know, I tried too lol
1 person likes this
22 Feb 09
What you said is completely true, my daughter likes testing me and she is stuburn as I am! I guess i just need to be strong and try to do part of what you experience was. It might just work, well it all depends on me now. Thanks a lot!
• United States
21 Feb 09
Kids are funny and go through stages. If she is eating "something" she's not starving. I agree not giving her junk, but if all she wants to eat that day is yogurt, give her the yogurt. Our son goes through stages like that where he'll only drink milk and eat apples- so that's what I give him. He's doing well, gaining weight, so there are no worries. Best of luck to you. Namaste-Anora
1 person likes this
@stacyv81 (5904)
• United States
21 Feb 09
I agree with you kind of, Give him what he wants is a lot of times what doctors will tell you, but what if you dont have what he wants? I have 3 kids, so I am a firm believer in the approach I say below, because I am not about to make 3 different meals for 3 different people everyday, do you know what I mean? I dont want to sound like a hard a$s, but hey, they cant always get what they want right? lol
1 person likes this
• United States
21 Feb 09
It sounds like you are doing great by only having healthy foods available to her. looks like her choices are a little bland, but she's fine...my son, when he was that age had days or weeks - sometimes it felt like months - where he would chose 1 food to eat - sometimes it was peanut butter sandwiches, so i tried to get the "fruitiest" jam to use on it, or add mashed bananas the "mac-n-cheese" phase was the LONGEST - i found that adding ground beef was a no-no haha - but offering any fruit or vegetable on a regular basis is worth a try She will grow out of it - my son is almost 6 feet tall, and about 160 pounds kid's tummies seem to intrinsically know what they need - it really is normal for her age - she's realizing that she choices, and she's using them...
1 person likes this
@NaomiErin (389)
• Philippines
21 Feb 09
Hi franfranflan! I'm not a parent but I want to share my opinions regarding to your post. ^_^ How about making the presentation of the food a little fun? Like designs that kids like? Or maybe you can ask her what she likes then make a bargain that she can eat those if she finishes first what you have to give her? Making agreements can sometimes help because both of you are communicating what you like.
1 person likes this
• Philippines
21 Feb 09
Really, girl. Don't worry so much. Back when we were younger we always wanted to eat candy and chips and ice cream and lollipops all the time. Try not to do a thing, just do go the daily grind you're used to. Your daughter will eventually get around. Okay, maybe do at least something. One thing you should do as a parent is to not let her eat food in the middle of the day. That way she's hungry for breakfast/lunch/dinner and she'll get to eat the food on the table. Don't force her to eat everything, as well. It annoys kids.
1 person likes this
• United States
21 Feb 09
Well honestly all the children at this age are very picky and you have to have patience with them. By patience I mean you have to either force them to eat it or spank her a little to make sure she eats it. I am not saying that this is the best way but I cant think of anything better. I mean I dont have kids but if I did I would think this as ONE of my options but not as THE option if there was a better one.
@lynnemg (4539)
• United States
21 Feb 09
I would give her two or three choices and let her pick what she would like to eat. Then, when you prepare the food for her, sit with her at th table, with no t.v., no radio, no destractions, and make yourself eat very slowly. This makes her feel like she has the choice of what she wants to eat, and also makes her feel like she is not eating alone. With my oldest son, I woud take a small bite at the same time he did, that way he felt like I was eating just as "fast" as he was. If you think that she doesn't want to at becaue it looks like there is a lot on her plate, than put a small amount of food on a bigger plate. She will likely eat it all because she thinks it isn't very much at all. If she does not eat at meal time, I would not give her a snack between meals. This way, she is more hungry at the next meal time. If she knows that you will give in to her between meals even tough she didn't eat her food, she will play it as long as she can. If you tell her no snack unless you eat, and stick to it, she may eat better for you.
22 Feb 09
bigger plate, same quantities, good idea too, and too maybe im to blame that I often dont eat with her, I just sit with her, maybe it will encourage her to eat if I sit at the tabe with some food on my plate. Good observation.thanks
@Amberina (1541)
• United States
21 Feb 09
My kids went through this same thing at that age I talked to my Dr about it an he said when they don't want to eat a lot it's just because their bodies are resting a little before a huge growing spurt and when the spurt hits they will eat you out of house an home and he was right lol. Maybe her body is doing the same thing just resting before a big growing spurt. What I would do is come up with a healthy milk shake instead of using sugar use fruit and carob if she likes chocolate and I think they have powdered vitamins and minerals you can get they have them in liquid at the health food store I would just make up a really good milk shake and see if she will drink it.
22 Feb 09
cool, milkshakes is something i discovered yesterday now that you mentioned, we had banana and strawberries, she drunk a little because she didnt like the bits, but i will try to blend it a lot finer and add some powdered flavoured vitamines or something like that. great idea my friend!
@loved1 (5336)
• United States
21 Feb 09
Why not try letting her be involved in the planning and preparation of the meals? You can find many children's cookbooks at the library or bookstore. These are full of healthy and fun dishes that are kid friendly. Make her a little apron and stand her on a chair to clean the grapes, count the apples, etc. Kids are far more likely to eat something they were allowed to help prepare. Another thing you could do is let her have a variety of condiments to dip her food into. Even though it might seem gross to you to dip roast beef in applesauce, she might think it is so fun it is worth eating something she does not like. Heck, she might even find out she likes it. My kids use Ranch dressing, ketchup, tartar sauce, pancake syrup, BBQ sauce etc in little bowls as the centerpiece. Then they have a variety of dippable foods ( I will even let them use toothpicks to spear the foods, just to make it more fun) and have a little fondue party. You might be surprised to see what happens. My middle daughter only eats fishsticks if they are dipped in pancake syrup, but at least she eats fish!
22 Feb 09
fishstick in syrup sounds like fun!lol the dipping bit is very intresting and i will include it on my list of ideas to make her eat more fun like. apreatiate your comment!
• Philippines
21 Feb 09
My daughter is just like your daughter, and she's now 4 years old. Children tend to have different food interests, the only solution for that is to know what are the foods that she likes to eat and doesn't like to eat. Try also introducing her to new foods and try to see if she'll be able to like it or not. Try also to observe what kinds of food she likes and hate. If She does not like veggies, then don't waste time to cook for her that. Instead find other food that have or contain the same vitamins and minerals. And never ever force your child to eat the food that she does not like because there is the tendency to dislike it more if you do that. And most importantly, you should always remember to give her vitamins every day to supplement the vitamins and minerals that she wasn't able to get.
22 Feb 09
yeah vitamines and supplemets are a good idea and I do give her that when she doesnt eat properly. I will try to be nor observative. Thanks for your help!
@Scagie (49)
• United States
21 Feb 09
Try not to give her anything to eat for a while, this might sound preposterous but once shes hungry she will be glad to eat anything you cook up, oh and as someone mentioned before throw out all the sweets before doing this.
@academic2 (7009)
• Uganda
21 Feb 09
Give this kid a full doze of appetizer, vitamin B complex and also let him have a big say in what he wants to eat-that could bring back his appetite!
@dawnald (84146)
• Shingle Springs, California
21 Feb 09
Sounds like my Naomi. Sometimes the only thing you can do (other than engaging in a stubbornness contest) is put vitamins in the child's juice!
@skysuccess (8882)
• Singapore
21 Feb 09
franfranflan, I feel that she is just too young to understand that those strange and unpleasant LOOKING stuffs are nice and good. That is on the condition that you are not a bad cook yourself! Just joking. Like I said, your darling is just too young here. You may want to be a little creative and make meal times equally as enjoyable as play time. You can start by cutting up the meats and new stuffs you are going to introduce to her in nice shapes or decorate her plate of food. E.g. We can always play house by using a square cheese with piece of ham (cut diagonally) as the roof of the house, cucumber slices for windows and tomato slices for the door. Or we can use the blenders to blend broccolis, carrots and potatoes separately and use them as colorings for the dish. Children are easily fascinated and enjoys novelties. So, put on your thinking cap and express your creativity and art on your food and I am sure she will have a different view about food in the future.