Picky Eaters — Can They Live on Air?

toddlervegMost kids go through periods of picky eating. Cassidy, one of my favorite little 10 month olds, was a great eater until about a month ago. She loved veggies, and pretty much gobbled up any of the healthy grub her mom put on her food tray. Then one day her mother called me, worried that Cassidy was suddenly refusing almost everything. “She can’t survive on bananas, avocado, and peanut butter toast, can she?”

Cassidy is feeling her oats and grabbing her power. She’s discovered that though there isn’t much she can control in her young life, she CAN choose what she’ll eat. This is an important and exciting milestone! And the truth is, she can survive and even thrive on bananas, avocado, and peanut butter toast, at least for awhile. That’s a pretty balanced diet of protein, carbs, and healthy oils. Good job, Cassidy!

So don’t try to force your little guy to eat what you think is best. Studies show that children who are force fed are more likely to have eating disorders in the future. Don’t worry, soon enough her tastes will broaden and she can show you that she’s STILL the boss … of food choices, anyway. So keep offering varied, nutritious stuff and trust that little body to choose which and how much.

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Ellen and Rachel are two old friends and “expert” mamas—one a pediatrician and one a family therapist—with fifty years of parenting experience between them.

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2 responses to “Picky Eaters — Can They Live on Air?”

  1. betsy

    This all seems like sound advise to me. I will pass it on to friends and family alike. I am so proud of what you are doing here.

  2. Paige

    Great advice Dr. Rachel! Your words of wisdom have already helped me so much with my 11 month old!

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