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Young Toddlers Eating Issues and Ideas

  1. #1
    Shenzhennifer is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Tsuen Wan

    Young Toddlers Eating Issues and Ideas

    I find that my 16 month old is in a kind of difficult (annoying) transitional phase for eating. Any ideas or experiences are welcome:)

    First, his consumption has gone down to nearly 50% of what it was before. He eats like a bird for breakfast (yogurt and fruit puree only and I practically have to force him), and I'm happy if he just eats half of what I give him for lunch and dinner. Sometimes he just totally refuses, though if I give him a toy at the table he might let me shove in a few mouthfuls till he's had enough and starts spitting it out.

    I also find this age a bit fussy in what he can eat. I know technically he CAN eat anything and I would let him, but he still prefers most things that are completely soft, saucy and easy to chew, even though he's got 8 teeth and CAN use them. But harder to chew stuff he will often spit out if it's too much work. For this reason, I'm still sometimes giving him baby jars as at least they are providing him with good nutrients and he can swallow them easily. It's getting more and more challenging to find good nutritious food for him to eat that he WILL eat.

    Can you experienced mothers help me out here? What kinds of foods did you give your young toddler and in what kind of portion?

    I'm in a food rut and annoyed half the time with what my son actually ingests.


  2. #2
    nicolejoy's Avatar
    nicolejoy is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    North Point
    Finger foods all the way! Try small fruit like grapes or berries, muesli bars, pasta is a big hit for my girl, she's always asking for "macagigi" (macaroni) - you can mix the pasta with a bit of sauce and cheese for a bit extra vitamins...

    I try to have "healthy" stuff for meals and then she gets snacks like cookies etc in between.

    I try to give her more "healthy" stuff that I know she likes - like berries - more than the "unhealthier" options like cookies and all that... And I don't really stress too much about it - even though I know she could be eating better than what she is... Could be worse too ;) ;)

  3. #3
    pixelelf is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2008
    yup they are real fussy. i just try not to sweat about it and breathe heh heh. with my son i try to let him do the "adult" stuff like spreading his own bread, stirring warm soup, with supervision of course. it also helps us greatly when we bring him to do groceries and all the excitement of seeing fish jump and selecting them, makes him want to eat them at dinner. dun ask me why... i also wonder why :)

    different fruits for different days with oat cheerios and cornflakes.(he doesnt like the sweetened ones) with a bowl/cup of cold fresh milk at the side for him to dip or pour. the milk part, keeps him very happy and in control.

    fruit + milk smoothie with added oat bran. with half a slice of toast with cream cheese + 1/4 cup cheerios.

    a slice of french loaf with cream cheese with mushroom soup to dip and drink. spreads his own butter and cream cheese. the ability to spread his own toast keeps him very happy and in control. cold milk on the side.

    mango/ strawberry toasties with cheese. with cheerios and a cup of horlicks with added oat bran. baked beans on the side.

    sandwich + fruit + juice

    noodle/ spaghetti + fruit + drink (once he learns to slurp the noodle or spahetti, this is a favourite)
    very rarely rice. somehow he doesnt like them for lunch.

    soup. he feeds himself soup. enjoys stirring warm soup to cool and makes him happy. a plate of fruit. he eats whatever we eat.

  4. #4
    jvn is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Mid-Levels, Hong Kong
    I'd agree with nicolejoy, finger food for sure, put him in control and let him discover on his own what he does and doesn't like texture and tastewise. He'll chuck some over the side but he'll try other things and decided he likes them.

    While he's learning maybe you can offer him finger foods at snacktimes when you won't be as worried about the quantity he's eating and he can have plenty of time to explore each different food and there's no stress associated with the experience.

    Also, I know it's easy for me to say and you're understandably stressed about it, babies and young children aren't inclined to starve themselves, some just aren't big eaters, one of my nieces is a bit older than your son and eats like a bird most days too - that's just the way she is and she's perfectly lively and healthy. If I were you I'd try and take a step back and not get too stressed about it if he's healthy and energetic otherwise?

    Best of luck

    Oh, and specific foods wise, definitely pasta, ricecakes with peanut butter, berries, grapes cut in half, steamed carrot sticks, broccoli florets or roasted sweet potato wedges, orange segments, omelette, cheese.

  5. #5
    Fisona is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Tai Koo Shing, Hong Kong
    Hi Shenzhennifer,

    How about try making food more fun for kids like these:

    Bread cutter-
    Rakuten - Bread cutter exciting Disney Winnie the Pooh characters - valve - the valve Deco '] [skater

    Vegetable cutter-
    Rakuten - Winnie the Pooh ? ? vegetable cutter

    So your little one gets a taste of harder texture food.

    When your little one gets elder, perhaps can also try these:

    Pancakes maker -
    Rakuten - Anpanman pancake pan (skillet) 05P18Aug09 '05P28may10

    Donut maker-
    Rakuten - Donattsumeka MCE-3308

    Food processer set (little car)-
    Rakuten - Tomica ? ? Character set of valves 06

    This is a very good online shopping site, bought a few things from it recently, all made from Japan.

    Alternatively some large department stores like Apita also have these products.


  6. #6
    baffelly is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Same problem here. My 16 mth is refusing his usual fav food. Only eat yoghurt and fruits. Last night we ate early so we can eat with him and he sampled a bit of all our dishes and I made some hummus sandwich for him. We put bits of food on his plate and he ate with his fingers. He also doesn't like to chew hard food. So running out of ideas soon as what we eat is not often suitable for him (eg greasy or spicy Chinese food with strong sauce, meat with bones, deep dried stuff).

  7. #7
    southside852 is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    at that age and even now (son is 29 months),their taste buds are still maturing and developing. my son goes through waves of loving certain foods and then the next week hating them. it's totally normal. like many have said above, we did lots of finger foods and would leave lots of healthy snacks around the house if i felt he wasn't eating enough during meals...also, on the other hand, you could extend time between meals so by the time a meal comes around, he should be starving.

    my son never fell for the cute cut-out shapes of food and was actually most interested in our food that we ate at night. sometimes i would trick him by eating his dinner and then he would just end up eating his own food.....

  8. #8
    Shenzhennifer is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Tsuen Wan
    Thanks for the replies.
    Today's breakfast fell very flat. I made him a delicious berry smoothie, which he hated, and cream cheese and jam toast, which he spat out. Let's see what other food I can waste today...

    Pixelelf - sounds like your son eats some nice breakfasts, and eats a lot of it too. I'm envious;) Sounds like he is a little bit older though?

    I can't wait for my little dude to like sandwiches. So far, nope. Also hates peanut butter, doesn't care about grilled cheese, thinks jam is yucky.
    I have been giving him finger foods since before he was 1, but even with them it's limited in terms of texture and taste. Most cooked veg finger food he's not into (except for broccoli), seems to like rice cakes dry but then it's hard to eat a lot, loves fruit, occasionally cheese if he's really hungry...pasta is not a finger food for him unfortunately as he needs it cooked very very very wekk before he will consider touching it:(

    Fisona - I'm familiar with Rakuten because of my hubbie. I like the Pooh sandwich cutter. Might try to pick on e up next time we go to Japan and hope my little one starts liking sandwiches.

    Baffely - what is your hummous recipe? Sounds yummy.

    Anyway, onwards with a New Foods Crusade!
    Thanks for all your suggestions~

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