Refusing food -how to handle?

(5 Posts)
misselphaba Fri 23-Aug-13 08:22:47

Just that really. DD took to solids (weaned on mush and finger foods) quite quickly and has always eaten a lot. In fact, at one point I was concerned she was eating too much, too soon/cutting out bfs too quick. The hv was happy with this situation (they seem very keen on cutting down feeds and getting onto 3 meals as quickly as poss) so I'm hesitant to go back now the situation has reversed as I'm sure I will be advised to cut out bfs in order to encourage DD to eat more.

The increase in bfing during the day does seem to coincide with the decrease in eating. But she isnt feeding excessively -four feeds a day. The change in bf/eating also coincides with sleeping through the night after months (since weaning actually) of poor sleeping. This was prob coincidence but perplexing when the baby starts to sleep through when she starts eating next to nothing.

The feeds also encourage napping which wasnt really happening before. So as you can prob see, I don't really want to cut down feeds if I don't have to.

But I am worried that I may create probs with food later down the line by how I handle it now - fussiness, long term refusal etc.

The only foods she will eat reliably atm are porridge, yoghurt and toast. Last wk she was all about the pasta (Thai red beef curry with pasta, anyone? How about the classic roast chicken with pasta?) She wont eat anything mashed, either on the spoon or self feeding. She will eat lumps, so pasta in some type of sauce is fine but not mashed potato. A lot of the time, she won't even taste it so its not always down to my rubbish cooking. Same goes for the finger foods left on the highchair tray -unless its toast, rice cakes or baby biscuit things although she has better days where she gives it all a go. My lovingly prepared cod fingers were examined then carefully slung over her shoulder.

I'm not sure how to proceed.

Keep offering what Im eating and no big deal if shes not interested?
Do I offer something else?
Do I offer pudding (yoghurt or fruit) if she hasn't eaten any of her dinner?

The last two days she ate very little, only breakfast really, and woke hungry for milk in the night. I was wondering if this was just a phase -similarly to how she went off milk before. But in the meantime, I'm worried that by not eating certain (most) foods now, she will only end up eating the same three things when she's a toddler and meal times will be a nightmare forevermore!

Gobbolinothewitchscat Fri 23-Aug-13 08:29:44

My DS is 8 months and I do BLW. I find there re says that DS eats more and some days less. I tend to offer a meal, then fruit then yoghurt. Only small amounts in the tray

What I have found (particularly if he's tired and ive offered a new thing) is that some nights he just wants the old familiars such as fruit and yoghurt and I'll also supplement with some toast or rice cakes with cream cheese which are very popular. I can tell if he's not bothered as he lobs the food over the side of the high chair

I don't worry too much re the amounts he eats and if he supplements with a bit more milk. I kind of figure that he won't starve himself and some days I feel like eating less than others.

I sometimes break up the savoury course by offering a bit of fruit if he looks like he's not interested. I find that he then often will go back to the savoury stuff.

Gobbolinothewitchscat Fri 23-Aug-13 08:34:18

Oh and DS is on 4 bottles a day of 7 ounces each. Quite often he tends not to finish the whole bottle but I won't be cutting down less than that as (a) he's huge for his age and (b) sleeps like a dream. Couldn't care less what HVs say.

My sister's DS went through a 3 week period at this age if refusing all food bar one Ella's purée that she bought in desperation (think it was the oaty crumble?) she just fed him that with some angst whilst still offering other foods which he eventually started eating again. He's nearly nearly 3 now and not fussy at all!

sharond101 Fri 23-Aug-13 21:27:25

Don't know what age your LO is but my DS is 15mo and goes through phases of eating a huge variety of foods and eating lots of it then decides to eat only a very limited range of foods in small quantities. I know I can always get him to eat breakfast (on the hungrier routine sometimes 3 weetabix with fruit!!) but when he goes for a few days where he is refusing foods lunch and even moreso dinner can be a challenge and things he would have eaten only days before he takes dislike to. I try and be relaxed about it and leave him with the food for a bit before taking him away from the situation. I will offer it again shortly after or at another mealtime if it's suitable to keep. On days like these I often offer some porridge or weetabix after his evening meal so as to avoid him waking hungry. On fussy days I also try and stick to things I know he really likes and even try giving him finger foods on the go as he tends to eat better when he has distractions than in his highchair with only the food to focus on.

misselphaba Sun 25-Aug-13 20:44:23

So what you're saying is DD probably won't have a lifetime of food issues if I let her live off the same three foods for days on end?!?!

Phew that is good news.

I was genuinely starting to freak out but I think it's time to take a more baby led approach and hope she will begin to eat a wider range of food again. She must be sick of chicken and cucumber by now surely!

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