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Old 02-14-2011, 01:39 PM   #1
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Toddler eating strike

My 17 month old has decided to be *very* picky about what he will eat. He used to be an awesome eater and would at least try everything we gave him and would eat constantly throughout the day. Now we're lucky if we can get him to eat 1 actual meal. He'll ask for a cheese stick or crackers, take a few bites (if that) and be done. He'll even refuse some of his favorite foods! The only thing he seems to always eat are pasta with butter or sauce, these wheat crackers I have, and cut up pieces of watermelon, cantaloupe, and honeydew. He drinks milk (usually only at night, naps, and in the car but sometimes throughout the day), and lots of water and juice.

He's a small kid (21lbs) but has always gained at least a few pounds at each WCC. I'm nervous that won't be the case in a few weeks for his 18 month checkup if he continues this eating strike. Is this normal? Should I be worried? Any tricks from moms who've been there? THanks

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Old 02-14-2011, 03:15 PM   #2
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Re: Toddler eating strike

my son and your son are only 7 days apart and my son has done the exact same thing. he used to eat a ton, but he only weighs 23 pounds with a wet diaper. i was concerned he wasn't getting enough to eat because it seemed like he wasn't eating at all. i asked his dr about it and he told me not to worry. he said he wouldn't starve. i continued to offer the 3 normal meals and snacks and he sat with the family. if he ate, he ate, if he didn't we didn't make a fuss about it. i never offered him anything different just because he was refusing to eat. it only took about a week and he was back to his normal self. he didn't loose any weight during that week so i knew he was okay.

my daughter did the same thing at that age and then once again just recently (she's 3 1/2). i think sometimes it's just a thing to see how far they can push the limits.
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Old 02-14-2011, 03:20 PM   #3
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Re: Toddler eating strike

I would cut down on the juice. Juice gives you a "false full" feeling. Better that he eat the actual fruit and get fiber and more vitamins. Other than that I wouldn't worry about it. It actually sounds like a moderately balanced diet, especially if you can blend other veggies into the pasta sauce. My DD is picky and loves noodles. I get her brown rice noodles that look and taste exactly like traditional noodles but aren't just white wheat flour.
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Old 02-14-2011, 03:33 PM   #4
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Re: Toddler eating strike

Have you tried smoothies? Like PP mentioned, actual fruit is much better than juice. My DS never gets juice but he loves the smoothies I make him. I put whole frozen fruit (it varies but my DS likes strawberries and blueberries best), half a banana, whole fat plain yogurt, unsweetened vanilla almond milk (hemp milk is awesome too), a touch of honey, a little cinnamon, and about 1 teaspoon of coconut oil. This way my DS gets a couple different food groups, a range of vitamins and minerals, and some good healthy fats all in one yummy treat that he loves to slurp up.
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Old 02-14-2011, 03:44 PM   #5
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Re: Toddler eating strike

Our Pediatrician warned us that this could happen. He told us to do exactly what Shay's Pedi said to do.

HTH!
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Old 02-14-2011, 04:13 PM   #6
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Re: Toddler eating strike

My son started doing the same thing... part of it was because he was teething and not feeling well (cutting molars is horrible). Some days he'd eat one thing, and other days he wanted nothing to do with it. Eventually what I started doing was mixing baby food veggies with mashed potatoes, and I'd give him some crackers to scoop with. He liked that, as long as the veggies went well with the potatoes and it wasn't to veggie heavy.

I also started including DS in meal prep (letting him pour noodles into a pot, letting him stir the instant mashed potatoes, push buttons on the microwave, pick foods out of the cupboard) and making sure that even if he made a mess that I stayed positive and walked him through it and told him how yummy it would be. It took a few tries to figure out what he was good at, but I notice that DS is much more likely to eat something if he had a positive hand in making it. He'll point to the plate and say "Me!" like "I made this!" and we make sure to tell him how yummy it is and what a good cook he is. He gets a kick out of it.
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