How To Get Your Toddler To Eat
Toddlers are very picky when it comes to eating. And it can get frustrating trying to get them to eat and also worrying. In most cases the toddler is perfectly fine, this is when toddlers are developing social skills and learning to walk and form words. Part of this stage is forming opinions and having preferences; the parents may not always agree with. Here are steps in the right direction to get your toddler eating.
Change the environment in which your toddler is eating. Sometimes a toddler is uncomfortable on a high chair and will refuse to eat to bring the point across. Put the high chair in front of a TV or let the toddler eat at the table with a baby chair.
Replace the food with something else; sometimes toddlers have cravings for particular meals and will reject what is offered. Their eating habits always return to normal after a short period of time.
Choose a different texture for the food; the toddler may want to eat something liquid rather than solids such as soup.
Encourage the toddler to eat by pitching incentives such as comparing the food to a popular cartoon character diet. Also offering rewards for eating is another effective way of getting the toddler to eat; such as offering sweets as a reward after the meal. (See reference 2)
Make the food fun by adding colors and shapes to the food such as cutting vegetables to stars for example. Toddlers are highly curious at their age and respond to eye stimulating and creative food.
Invite other toddlers for meal times. Watching others in the same age group eat food will influence the toddler to do the same. Toddlers are still learning behavior therefore watching others eat can convince a toddler to eat.
Alternatively eat as a family this can be more effective as the toddler is acquainted with you. (See reference 1)
Cut the food into smaller pieces were possibly; this makes the meal look less challenging to the toddler and is more likely to try it.
- My son won\'t eat a meal
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- What Will We Eat Today - Dealing with Toddlers - University of Illinois Extension