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My 4, almost 5 years old and food - going CRAZY!


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  #1  
July 4th, 2011, 04:23 PM
Earthy.Mama's Avatar .*.*.*.*.*.*.*.*.*.*.*.*.
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This child is the pickiest eater ever. She doesn't want to eat ANYTHING except canned soup, ramen noodles, tuna sandwiches, corn dogs....gggggrrrrr. She seriously will not eat anything else. She refuses to even TRY food. She will throw a fit, scream and cry that she doesn't like it (when she's never even HAD it before). I get so sick of hearing this EVERY night at dinner I just make her leave the room while the rest of us eat.

I've tried different tactics....
*Letting her get up and telling her that when she's hungry later, this is what she'll eat (another meltdown when she is hungry later).
*Telling her she is not getting to do ___ unless she eats.
*Telling her she can't get down from the table until she eats SOMETHING on the plate, shoot just even one BITE.
*Sitting her in timeout in a different room while she throws her tantrums and then make her sit with us until everyone else is finished eating and then she can get up.
*Tell her that this is what's for dinner, she can either eat it or she can have breakfast in the morning.


And if she doesn't eat something (which happens a LOT and I haaaaaaaaaaaate it, horrible mommy here ) she freaks out at bedtime saying her stomach hurts and she's SO hungry and begs for a banana or apple (which we give to get her to stop freaking out because she's loud and it's healthy at least)....

I know that within all the things I've done there are some good and some bad, but I'm apparently not putting the good + the good together to find a solution. I need some help ladies!!
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  #2  
July 4th, 2011, 04:38 PM
mgm78's Avatar Zoe's mom Meredith
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I would just keep offering her food. And do not give her those foods she will only eat, which are not the healthiest foods. Have you tried a grazing tray like Dr Sear's recommends in his "Healthiest Kid in the Neighborhood" book? My DD eats well, but we only have healthy food in the house. She will eat broccoli like it is going out of style when we put "dip" (aka goddess dressing) or "cheese" on it (parm cheese). She loves hummus as well. You want to look at what she is eating in total all day, not just at meal times. DD does not do meals, but grazes thru the day, like Dr Sear's discusses in his book, which is healthier in the long run.

How about smoothies? Yogurt?
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  #3  
July 5th, 2011, 07:54 AM
Earthy.Mama's Avatar .*.*.*.*.*.*.*.*.*.*.*.*.
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I love Dr. Sears so I'll check that book out. As for grazing trays - she won't touch the stuff. I can occasionally get her to eat lettuce with A TON of ranch dressing... seems counter productive. Refuses any other dressing and won't eat hummus. Will check the book out and search on his website a bit more for some added info. Thanks
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  #4  
July 5th, 2011, 05:02 PM
mgm78's Avatar Zoe's mom Meredith
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also, if DD does not eat dinner, she gets it again for lunch I dunno I would just keep offering and not giving in. Give her an array of things, I always give DD fruit, since I know she will eat that. You said your LO eats apples? then include apple as well, so she won't starve. And she won't starve. Also, maybe healthy versions of her favorites? Does she eat pancakes? you can make cottage cheese oatmeal pancakes. check out weelicious, there are some really good recipes on there. does she eat eggs? smoothies?
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  #5  
July 5th, 2011, 05:24 PM
Kathode's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I'm quite unforgiving when it comes to picky eating. Starting pretty much as soon as they are eating what we're eating (end of the first year) they get what they get on their plate. Period. They can choose to eat it or not but if they don't eat it they get nothing else until the next snack or meal time.
I won't force them to eat or keep giving them the same thing until they eat it, but if they're served whatever it is we're having (unless it's totally kid un-friendly, in which case I'll also make something friendlier and offer both) that's all there is, there are no options. There's no pleading or begging or fits or whatever because that's just the way it always is with no exceptions.
If they want to skip dinner for a week and just eat breakfast and lunch and snacks, so be it. This attitude takes all the drama out of meal time and both my kids are great eaters. At 9 years old, Mia eats just about everything. She loves things like asparagus and mussels that a lot of kids won't go near. Edward is also pretty good, but still refuses stuff once he tastes it as his tastes are just developing.
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  #6  
July 5th, 2011, 05:48 PM
mgm78's Avatar Zoe's mom Meredith
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also, i like to give DD a choice, but the choice is two acceptably healthy options. Do you want tofu and carrots or veggie burger and broccoli? like that. So she feels like she has a choice, even though either choice was an ok choice
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  #7  
July 5th, 2011, 07:49 PM
stephi1997's Avatar Veteran
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Can you try including her in meal prep? If she is involved and feels proud that she is helping make a meal, she might be more inclined to eat a wider variety.
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  #8  
July 6th, 2011, 05:09 AM
mgm78's Avatar Zoe's mom Meredith
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^ that too!!! DD helps me, at 2 years old, with making roasted veggies (i cut and she throws them on the baking dish) and we make beet tofu burgers every couple weeks and she presses the button on the food processor. She loves to eat what she makes.
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  #9  
July 7th, 2011, 03:20 PM
Earthy.Mama's Avatar .*.*.*.*.*.*.*.*.*.*.*.*.
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Thank you all for the suggestions! The giving her a choice is a good idea, I will have to incorporate that as well!

She does like to help me cook and I let her do as much as possible if it's not dangerous
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  #10  
July 7th, 2011, 05:27 PM
Kathode's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Oh yes, the meal prep thing works well....I've found that a plastic knife can actually cut quite a few things, like mushrooms, cucumbers (peeled) most fruit, but is safe for little hands.
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  #11  
July 8th, 2011, 09:33 AM
Purrrrrrr's Avatar Semi-crunchy Mommy
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Have you tried surprising her? Like, instead of tuna sandwiches, chicken salad? Or varying the type of soup she's eating (same color, different flavor)? Using a turkey dog in corn dog batter? If she likes ramen noodles, maybe she'd like the stuff from Thai Kitchen?

I was a picky eater and that's how my mom tricked me out of it. For some reason I hated rice as a kid and she started mixing rice in with pasta.

Try little changes she won't notice at first, plus a new something added as a side on her plate. And if she likes apples, see if she likes plums and pears. Cut them up like apple slices and see what she thinks.
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