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Old 11-22-2004, 12:31 AM   #1
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Getting a toddler to eat

How can you get a 21 month old to eat? My little girl barely eats. I can get her to eat in the morning, but anything after that she does not eat well. She does like food all kinds of food she always has a couple bites of everything but there is mostly all of it still left. The only food group she will have everyday is milk. She won't eat dinner and an hour later she wants her baba. And she is usually hungry by then. I'll try to give her a snack but she only wants her baba. I've tried eating at different times but I'm at my wits end. Do I stop giving her milk for a couple of days? I will still give her lots of dariy. Or what do I do? Anything would be helpful. Thanks

 
Old 11-22-2004, 03:45 AM   #2
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Re: Getting a toddler to eat

I say do not take away the milk. She likes it, it is really good for her and is giving her a lot of nutrition. At that age a lot of kids really don't eat and it freaks parents out. The truth of the matter is that when she is really hungry she will eat. It is good that she is having a few bites and it sounds like she's eating well in the morning. Perhaps that's her main meal of the day. If you are really worried you should talk to your doctor, but I have a feeling they will tell you kinda the same thing. Does she have energy throughout the day? And does she appear to be the same weight? Maybe get a scale and weigh her to make sure she isn't losing a ton of weight. But really, this is a major for struggle for many parents of toddlers.

 
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Old 11-22-2004, 07:51 AM   #3
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Re: Getting a toddler to eat

We struggle with DS eating too. There's a small window of opportunity feeding toddlers -- they do most of their eating in the first 10-15 minutes and after that, they're pretty much playing. I try to shovel in as much food as possible, but also give him his own spoon to feed himself.

We've ended up sneaking extra calories into his food -- he gets carnation instant breakfast mixed in with his lunch time milk. I add butter to his veggies. Another suggestion is DIP -- ranch dressing, cheese whiz... For breakfast this morning he had 4 ounces of milk with chocolate quik added to it, a few pieces of dried cereal, three bites of baby oatmeal to which I added a little butter and half a slice of cheese. He's been demanding CHEESE a lot lately, so if he's excited and thrilled about something. We'll feed it to him. And for dessert after supper -- he gets premium ice cream with a higher fat content

Last edited by Ratatosk; 11-22-2004 at 07:52 AM.

 
Old 11-22-2004, 11:55 AM   #4
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Re: Getting a toddler to eat

Hi Sherri - toddlers, oh my! I remember when my dd was little and not eating enough - or so I thought. The pediatrician said, nonsense! He pointed out that her tummy was about as big as her fist and if she eat a few bites - 1/4 cup of anything at one sitting, that's plenty. I made sure what I offered was healthy and fed her 5 x a day in small portions. She's 24 and healthy, no problems with overweight. Glad I listened to that one! If she's okay on the growth charts, I wouldn't worry. I found they eat when they are hungry.

As far as the bottle, she is probably getting what she needs from the formula. As she gets closer to 2, 2 1/2, I would encourage you to offer healthy food first and then the bottle, down-size it to a little bottle, or try giving liquids in a sippy cup. I am not a fan of cow's milk, in place of formula, but that is my thing!

 
Old 11-23-2004, 06:32 AM   #5
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Re: Getting a toddler to eat

feed her a variet of healthy foods. Things like salad dressings and vegtable dips can make things more appealing. You may want to consider weening her from the bottle also, or limiting her milk to only what she needs.
Many Many toddlers seem to be picky eaters, but they will not starve themselves. Just make sure what is provided for her is healthy. No junk food.
I remember asking my doctor once what a portion size was for a toddler, because i wasn't sure what portion size my daughter should be eating, my doctor basicly said a portion is whatever she will eat. Give a small amount of everything, she will eat untill she is full...toddlers tend to not over eat (obviously there are exceptions to that). Trying to get another bite or two into her may cause her to end up over eating because she will feel that she needs that extra bite or two. at her age she is self limiting...i wouldn't force the issue. Like i said limiting her bottles to just the amount of milk she actually needs may help, or weening her altogether and giving her milk in a sippy cup may help. I know with my daughter breastmilk was what she wanted, untill i really put alimit on that she barely ate anything, when she was hungry she wanted to nurse, not to eat solid foods.

 
Old 11-24-2004, 07:08 AM   #6
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Re: Getting a toddler to eat

She is not losing any weight. It's just that when we sit down for supper and she doesn't eat anything it is very fustrating. She does snack throughout the day, so I guess I'll just keep doing what I'm doing. Thanks.

 
Old 11-24-2004, 07:48 AM   #7
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Re: Getting a toddler to eat

As long as she's not losing weight, she should be okay. We always feed DS first, while one of us prepares our dinner and then have him sit at the table while we eat. Sometimes he eats, sometimes he doesn't. We've had to trick him into thinking he's drinking the same milk we are by using the same type of glass, otherwise he refuses to drink his whole milk and wants our skim milk or water.

 
Old 11-24-2004, 08:51 AM   #8
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Re: Getting a toddler to eat

Hi Sherri, I would place her in the high chair with finger food and enjoy my dinner! If she is growing properly, don't worry about it so much. Dinner time is a 'given' ritual for us... she just eats when she's hungry....I think she has the right idea. The most important thing, IMO, is to have food available to her throughout the day, offer it to her when she is in the high chair for the sake of isolating her attention ...never force her to eat...she will eat when she is hungry and enjoy her! She will be making her own pbj sooner than you can imagine!

 
Old 12-28-2004, 07:24 AM   #9
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Re: Getting a toddler to eat

I had problems with my son eating when he was around 18 months. At first he ate just about anything I gave him. Then he got picky on me. For about one year or more, he mostly ate PBJ or grilled cheese sandwiches, pancakes, chicken nuggets and french fries. Occasionally I could get him to eat some grapes or a little banana. He drank ALOT, especially 2% milk. I think it was all a "texture" thing. I mean, how could a kid love grill cheese sandwiches and not touch mac & cheese. I started givng him those gummy bear vitamins just to make up for the vitamins he wasn't eating. Otherwise, his weight gain was fine. He's actually always been a little big for his age. He's always eaten at the table with the family at meals even if his is different and I've always put a bite size portion of our food on his plate, even though I know he won't eat it. It's just there, plus I think that has helped him be exposed to all those different foods even if he didnt' care to eat it. Anyway, he's going to be 4 in February and now he eats really well. Even loves fish, brocoli and cauliflower... things he wouldn't touch in the past! Now that he's eating better, our rule with the kids are to at least try it and if your don't like it, don't eat it, but you MUST try it. Most times they find they like food that "looks" yucky My daughter who is almost 6 eats just about anything (always has), so she's a good example for him and tries to persuade him sometimes by saying how good something is. Anyway, good luck, and don't worry too much. As long as they are growing steadily and eating a little, in time, they will come around and eat better.

Also, during his picky stage, I did cheat at times. He loved anything sweet, especially pancakes or cake type foods. So I found ways to sneak in pureed carrots, pineapple, sweet potatoe, pumpkin, apple sauce, and eggs in his portions of pancakes and cake like snacks Nothing green or he'd try to pick out the specks he saw

Last edited by mysweeties; 12-28-2004 at 07:29 AM.

 
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