If you have a picky eater at home, you know firsthand how frustrating and stressful mealtime can be, especially when fruits and vegetables are involved. Relax, you are not alone. Lots of children are picky eaters. Here are some tips from CafeMoms about how to make sure picky eaters are getting the nutrients they need...
Getting picky eaters to eat is a topic recently discussed at length in CafeMom's Advice for Moms. Here's some smart advice from CafeMoms:
- CafeMom #1: Dip is a good thing! Tonight we had baked chicken and asparagus. My kids both ate the asparagus, but my 20 month old didn't seem too excited about the chicken. I got her some salsa, and she dipped the chicken and ended up clearing her plate.
- CafeMom #2: My son is 20 months old and a picky eater...I refuse to make him two or three different things per meal just to find something he wants...I decide which foods I'm going to offer him, then I let him choose to eat them or not. He is always offered a fruit, vegetable, protein, and grain. Often he will initially refuse, only to eat it after he realizes I'm not going to fix him anything else. Some meals he chooses not to eat much and that's okay, too. I don't want meal time to turn into a power struggle, so I don't force the issue.
- CafeMom #3: I give my son something light for lunch-mostly yogurt, oatmeal (I cook it with some water, then place it on the plate for him to eat since he likes finger food), fruits, and sometime mac and cheese. For dinner, he eats whole wheat pasta and chicken nuggets, or sliced turkey, or hot dogs (non-fat and no salt). Sometimes I give him rice with any of those meats. Or scramble an egg and add some of the shredded ham in it.
- CafeMom #4: Try making a fruit smoothie for breakfast...when my DD was that age, she loved it!
- CafeMom #5: Frozen foods are fun to play with and will get eaten-like peas, blueberries, and corn. Chunks of avocado and tofu are loaded with great nutrition, and are fun to squish between little fingers...I have never met a toddler who wouldn't eat hummus (lots of calcium, protein, good fats and iron), you can mix it with a mashed egg...Offer cut fruits with yogurt dip, fresh veggies with hummus or salad dressing, cooked whole wheat pasta and veggies with marinara or peanut sauce or cheese sauce.
Thanks to all the moms above for these great ideas! Do you have any tips for getting picky eaters to eat?
Written by Kim Conte for CafeMom's Food & Party Buzz