Many people, before they become parents, often say that their kids won’t be fussy eaters. Most parents are in on the joke that you don’t get to choose. Even if you and your partner love all different types of food there’s no guarantee you won’t end up with the dreaded fussy eater.
But there are a few things you can do to reduce the chances that you’ll end up one.
Thoughts on a Fussy Eater
Depending on who you talk to, there are two ways in which people often suggest that you deal with demanding toddlers refusing to eat your delicious food. The first group are from the ‘they’ll eat when they are hungry’ camp, and the other will tell you to just give your kids what they want, it’s just a phase they will grow out of.
Neither of these is particularly helpful. After all, you don’t want to starve your child until they will eat anything. Mainly because an angry, hungry toddler is not going to make good decisions about food.
Waiting for them to grow out of it might seem well and good, but how long can your child exist on biscuits and cereal before there’s some nutritional damage done?
Set a good eating schedule
When your little one first begins to get fussy, you might be tempted to feed them snacks as a way to keep them from being too hungry. Then this starts to become a habit. Before you know it, your child isn’t eating defined meals. It becomes an all day long procession of snacks, and many of them probably not very healthy.
Get your schedule back in order. Plan three or four meals per day, plus two snacks for your child. Don’t be tempted to keep filling them up with more snacks. If they don’t eat their dinner, wait until your next scheduled snack time. They’ll soon begin to get hungry at the right times.
Don’t reward children with unhealthy foods
As adults, we know that a bar of chocolate is not something we should be eating too much. So we look forward to it when we do have it. Telling children that sweets and chocolate are rewards for something that will give them an unhealthy association with it. A child can’t understand why you can’t eat these treats all the time.
Get them involved in mealtimes
Kids love to feel like they’re helping, so getting them involved with buying groceries of making dinner can encourage them to eat it too.
Stop cooking them different meals
Unless you’re eating something that is totally unsuitable for kids, then you shouldn’t be making them different meals to accommodate their demands. By doing this, you’re not only creating more work for yourself, but you’re telling them you will give in to any of their demands. Where you can, keep mealtimes a family affair where everyone eats the same thing at the same time.