Toddler suddenly fussy with food textures

(3 Posts)
beckworth Mon 28-Dec-15 17:08:25

Can anyone offer advice on a sudden development of extreme food texture fussiness?

Ds is 16 months old, used to eat a wide variety of food, but is suddenly incredibly fussy about textures. Won't eat bread, only toast. Any 'bits' in food get spat out. Rice cakes, which he used to like, get crunched up and spat out. Won't even put things like grapes in his mouth. Random bits of banana and peach, which he will eat, get rejected for no apparent reason and spat out.

I was offering something else when a meal was rejected, but have stopped as of this evening. Dinner tonight got mostly spat out, except for the potato, and I've not offered anything else. Goes totally against the grain as he's always been teeny, 2nd percentile. Please reassure me this is the right thing to do?! Seems to wrong to put him to bed hungry, but this can't go on.

Also, I've typically been offering 'mixed' foods - tuna pasta with sauce, a forkful of roast dinner mixed up- ie. a bit of chicken, a bit of potato, a pea, on a fork. Should I start separating?

SevenSeconds Mon 28-Dec-15 19:06:01

In my experience it's really common for good eaters to go through a fussy stage around this age. My advice is:

1. Don't offer alternatives when a meal is rejected, but do try to make sure that the original meal includes at least one thing you know he likes. By all means separate food items if he seems to prefer that.

2. Try to stay really calm and do not appear to be emotionally invested. If you show that you are anxious about his eating, a lot of toddlers will pick up on this and are more likely to refuse food. He's starting to realise that he has a mind of his own!

3. Your last paragraph implies you're feeding him? Some toddlers prefer to feed themselves at this age.

4. Don't use food as a bribe / reward. Don't withhold pudding if he refuses his main course - give him fruit or yoghurt or whatever.

beckworth Mon 28-Dec-15 19:19:44

Thanks - makes sense. I've also realised we don't often eat with him, mostly due to timing, so we're going to start doing that.

We do a mixture of me feeding him and him feeding himself. So, toast he picks up himself, but pasta for example I put on a spoon / fork for him, although I've started encouraging him to put it in his mouth himself.

I was an incredibly picky child, and I always said I wasn't going to make every meal a battle like it was for me. And now I'm doing exactly that. Must get a grip. Logically, I know he's not going to starve himself, but the obsession with babies' weight gain that starts the day they are born has really done a number on me.

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