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Child won't eat: Any advice?

  1. #1
    micamira is offline Registered User
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    Child won't eat: Any advice?

    I am just wandering if anyone has had any experience with their child similar to mine. My 2 year-old daugher hasn't started eating solid food yet. She abhors being even touched by it! Sometimes we try to give her a bit to taste, because we figure maybe after she does tastes it she will like it, but all she does is spit it and cry as if we almost killed her! The doc says she will grow out of it, but I don't know when will that be or if there is anything I can do...or shouldn't do. Should I take her to see a therapist? Psychologist?
    Any advice is welcomed

  2. #2
    loupou is offline Baby Guru
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    So what does she consume? I mean, she's not the Amazing Photosynthesizing Child. Is she on milk only?

    Or does she eat porridge and other soft things.

  3. #3
    micamira is offline Registered User
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    Super baby

    Well, yes... she only likes to drink formula (Enfapro) and other things like yogurt, liquid yogurt and crackers - but that's it! She detest podrige, won't even look at fruits no mater how tempting! Even fruit juices are a no.
    See my desperation?

  4. #4
    loupou is offline Baby Guru
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    Hates Porridge

    Then foget about porridge, maybe she dislikes the texture. If she likes crackers, try different types of creackers and see if she'll eat them. Rice cakes and toast might also work. Cheerios that she can eat by herself (w/ her hands) without you supervising may help.

    My son and I used to have a fight because at breakfast he wouldn't eat toast (he was about 2 1/2 or 3) and he only wanted crackers. Then I had a brainstorm "he likes crunchy stuff" I thought and I bought him a cereal called "Oat squares" and he eats those everyday for breakfast. He dips them in peanut butter.

    You say she likes youghurt - what about cheese? I mean real cheese like cheddar or edam? Try it and see.

    For fruit... maybe wait and see, or try applesauce (since she likes liquidy things). Fruit juice isn't all that good for kids anyway.

    Have you tried noodles? My kids liked noodle- my son prefers them plain w/ margaine or in soup.


    My son was also a bit of a reluctant eater. One thing that also helped was reducing his milk intake. You might try only giving her bottle after she eats (as a reward) or else reducing the numbers she eats.

    Try to leave her alone as she eats. Spread some newspaper around the floor and put her at a low table (tea table or kids desk) and leave the food there and let her eat and don't worry about manners. Maybe she enjoys winding you up, I know my kids do sometimes.

    Now... what about garbage food? Does she also reject all sweets and potatoe chips, french fries? Sometimes the "you can have a sweet after you finish your greens" can work.
    Last edited by loupou; 07-06-2004 at 05:07 PM.

  5. #5
    aldougie is offline Registered User
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    When you say you try to give her solids what exactly do you mean - bits of food from your dinner? Have you ever tried weaning her properly i.e. giving her things like sweet potato, carrots, broccoli mashed? Apologies if this sounds strange but the whole process of introducing a child to solids takes a while and it isn't clear what exactly you have done in terms of weaning.

  6. #6
    jane01 is offline Registered User
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    Hi Micamira

    It certainly sounds like you have a challenge on your hands. I would second the good advice you have already received, particularly reducing her milk intake.

    I read that milk is a "food" rather than a "drink", therefore children can easily fill up on milk at the expense of other foods. Try giving, say, half the normal amount of milk and her appetite should increase for other food over a couple of days. Also only give milk after solids. You might find you have a grumpy couple of days, but she'll get used to it.

    Also, you can't force a child to eat anything. It is a battle you are only going to lose. All you can do is offer a variety of healthy food and it is up to them to eat it. Don't show emotion - hard I know if you are stressed about getting food into her. It will just become a battle of wills and a way for her to assert her independence. If she doesn't eat what is offered, take it away and go and do something else. She'll be hungry at the next meal. A healthy child won't starve herself.

    Try offering lots of healthy snacks during the day. Some children seem to want to graze all day, others like 3 solid meals.

    You might find that some days she eats lots of some things and not others. Hopefully over the course of a week or so, she has a balanced diet.

    My cheeky monkey of a daughter is not partial to vegetables. I puree them and mix them in with the baby yoghurt which she loves. She doesn't even notice they are there and I feel better knowing she has eaten some.

    Best of luck

  7. #7
    micamira is offline Registered User
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    Thumbs up Thanks for the advice!

    Thank you Jane01 & Loupou for your ideas. I will definitely try the mashed vegetables in the yogurt!! That's such a great idea since she likes it so much! I will also buy some other different, healthier cereals for her to "snack". I will have to be strong and try reducing her milk intake - we have tried not giving her milk unless she eats, but she would rather skip the meal than give solids a try.

    I have tried cheese, smoothies, raisins, bread, toasts, peanut butter, noodles, pasta, sweet corn, all sorts of fruits but nothing. She LOVES chocolate, but the "if you eat your food then you can have it" doesn't work either. Maybe as she gets older I can try again.

    To answer aldougie's question: we did try weaning her properly with mashed vegetables, cereals and the like. At some point she did eat them (maybe around 8-9 mo) - heck she even ate bits of fish! but then for some reason stopped. When I offer her food at the dining table, we actually seat her in her high chair with a bowl of food (arranged in an attractive manner).

    My attitude so far has been just as what Jane01 said: don't make a fuss or try to fight her if she refuses. I still think that is the best attitude towards this issue.

    Thank you all again for your thoughtful advice!

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