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Tips for feeding fussy eaters

Updated on June 28, 2011

Children can become fussy eaters or picky eaters for a number of reasons. Some children are more sensitive to taste, smell and texture. Feeding a fussy eater is a real challenge and can be tricky for parents, and caregivers. You can use these quick tips into your next family meal to allow for a more pleasant experience.

Ideas and tips for feeding fussy eaters:

Fussy eater
Fussy eater

1. Be creative: Sandwiches come in many shapes and sizes. Sandwiches can be grilled or toasted, rolled into wraps or served warm or cold. You can add any type of meat, cheese or vegetable. You can make dinosaur sandwiches. Just buy some couple of good gadgets to make your kids lunch box sandwiches. The cutter is also great for making buttered toast dinosaurs to go with pasta and soup. You can buy the cutter at bed bath and beyond.

2. Meal planning and preparation: Encourage your child in grocery shopping, meal planning and preparation. This will increase interest in the food. Children are willing to try new foods if they are includesd in the planning process. Let them choose their favorite fruits and vegetables atleast once a week. Also incude different colored foods in the plate.

3. Food portions: Feed your children smaller portions. It's better to eat small amount of food than nothing at all.

4. Schedule time: Try to schedule a meal time and snack time. Don't allow kids to eat at other times. Modify meal times, if possible, to take advantage of your child’s hungry parts of the day. As an example, most kids are truly hungry when they walk in the door after school. Take advantage of this by serving dinner at that time and a light snack later.

5. Be patient when trying new foods for fussy eaters: Parents should continue to offer the child a variety of foods at mealtimes. Research has shown that child takes atleast 10 times before they are willing to try it. Don't give up just because your child says they hate the food.

6. Limit beverages: If your child drinks too much, he or she can become full and eat poorly at mealtimes. Limit your child to 4 ounces of juice and 24 ounces of milk a day. Snacks, junk foods and beverages should be taken atleast 2 hours before a meal.

7. Avoid distractions: Don't allow any toys or books at the dining table. Also turn off the television at meals.

8. Make meal time pleasant: The meal time environment should always be considered when feeding a child. Conversation should be pleasant, and the table should be clean and bright. Distractions should be limited.

8. Treat ideas: Kids love chocolates. You can make chocolate covered bananas and chocolate covered strawberries or try to make with their favorite fruits. You can give this treat atleast once a week.

9. If the child doesn't like milk, you can offer some yogurt and cheese.

10. Offer healthy choices: Limit the high-fat and high-sugar foods that are available to your child. Evaluate your child’s diet on a weekly, and not daily basis.

11. Don't fuss:Try not to fuss if they reject the food or refuse to eat.

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