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Can anyone help with my daughter's diet? Almost no fruit and veg.

(23 Posts)
NuzzleandScratch Tue 23-Feb-16 07:30:33

I would really appreciate some advice on how to get dd1, almost 6, to eat a more healthy diet. We recently had to complete a week's food chart for her, as part of a school topic, and I was pretty appalled at how bad it looked. She suffers from constipation/accidents, although this is improving, but it's no wonder really when you look at her diet.

It basically consists mostly of bread, pasta, cheese, yoghurt, sausages, ham, smoked salmon, egg, with occasional cucumber, carrots and broccoli. She also eats banana. She also likes houmous with breadsticks.

For the record, as a family we are all slim, and my husband, dd2 (3.5) and I all eat a more balanced diet. In fact dd1 was regarded as slightly underweight at a recent gastro appt.

I am at a loss as to how to tackle this, and would welcome any advice, or book recommendations. She's just so resistant to trying anything new. We've been having a weekly veg box delivery since last summer, and I'd love her to try different things with us.

NuzzleandScratch Tue 23-Feb-16 07:31:49

I should add, she only drinks water.

NuzzleandScratch Tue 23-Feb-16 18:41:57


SmallGreenBouncyBall Tue 23-Feb-16 18:45:27

would she eat bread with raisins in or bananabread with grated carrot?

is it more a texture thing or a taste thing?
if she eats hummous, might she try other veg dips, like guacamole?

SimonLeBonOnAndOn Tue 23-Feb-16 18:46:48

Id be less concerned about the lack of fruit / veg, what strikes me is the amount of salt in her diet.
Cheese, ham, sausages and smoked salmon are all high in salt.

What about puréed veg in pasta sauces, soups etc?

NuzzleandScratch Tue 23-Feb-16 18:59:54

Thanks for the replies. Good idea about grated carrot in banana bread, I actually made banana bread on Sunday! Will try that next time. I don't think texture is an issue, so good idea about other dips.

Fair point about the salt, although she doesn't eat large portions of any of those foods, and obviously wouldn't have them in the same day. She used to eat grilled salmon fillet, but has gone off that. Extra veg in pasta sauce could work, but sadly she won't eat soup.

I really feel like I failed in weaning her, for some unknown reason she had quite a few Ella's pouches, as well as homemade meals, whereas dd2 never had anything other than freshly prepared food. I wonder if this difference has influenced how they eat now.

Disastronaut Tue 23-Feb-16 19:05:10

You could try mini muffins with courgette, peppers, sweetcorn etc. It's practically cake! Will look out recipe.

FWIW, aside from veg issue, I don't think her diet's too bad.

girlandboy Tue 23-Feb-16 19:06:14

You say she will eat yogurt - so would she eat it if you added fruit puree as a topping (or mixed in)?

EElisavetaOfBelsornia Tue 23-Feb-16 19:09:25

Have a look at a website called Mamacook. There are loads of child friendly recipes with hidden veg or ways of making it tasty!

potap123 Tue 23-Feb-16 19:10:40

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

hazeyjane Tue 23-Feb-16 19:13:14

Her diet really doesn't seem too bad to me, but I have ds with a badly limited diet, so this may cloud my judgement!

IMO the diet you gave her during weaning probably made no difference - I think some children just have a higher likelihood of going through very fussy phases, some children seem to be happy to try just about anything and some children have extreme reactions to food and limit their diet to foods that are 'safe'. I have one of each of these - it can be a bloody nightmare, but I try to relax about it, make sure they are all getting OK nutrition and try introducing new foods every so often in a calm and non stressy manner, with the knowledge that these things take time, and development.

DontBuyANewMumCashmere Tue 23-Feb-16 19:15:59

Here's a lush easy recipe on MN for broccoli and cauliflower cheese which is really simple and tasty. If she likes cheese you could always cheese it up a bit more for her.
Frubes? I know they're not great but normal or frozen it might get her a taste for sweet fruits, then you could migrate on to tinned peaches or easy Eton Mess, we just crush up a meringue nest and chopped strawberries and raspberries.
Will she eat blueberries? They go nicely in yoghurt and cereals.

SimonLeBonOnAndOn Tue 23-Feb-16 20:10:59

Don't feel bad, that wasn't my intention, sorry.
My eldest was a great eater at 2.
16 now, never eats fruit. Only eats carrots and peas veg wise.
He's a strapping 5'10".

Don't beat yourself up.

NuzzleandScratch Tue 23-Feb-16 21:17:48

Disastronaut, those muffins sound great, I'd really appreciate the tecipe if you can find it. She does like carrot cake, so that's not a million miles away!

girlandboy, she currently just has petit filous (not great I know), but might go for that mixed in. I do sometimes but her those pots of fruit purée for babies, just as a means of getting some fruit in.

EEOB, I'll check out mama cook, thanks.

Potap, that avocado pudding sounds great, I have most of the ingredients, so will def give that a go! Chocolate she definitely does like! Sadly she tends to only have pasta with cheese, but will have lasagne, so will try to push pasta sauce again. I think I tried sweet potato for her once, but she wasn't keen, but will try again, I love them!

Thanks for the reassurance hazeyjane, for a long time I've tried to take that attitude, I know I eat a far wider range of foods now than when I was younger. I do however feel partly responsible for he soiling issues too, as I tried to potty train quite early in retrospect. It was also ages before it dawned on us that there was a medical problem (severe consultation), because people kept saying soiling is very common and she'll grow out of it (years of soiled pants later, she didn't!).

Cashmere, I'm sure she would like those fruits, but she just won't try them. Even strawberries we grew last year in our own garden! She just needs to be more bold! Perhaps I need to try some sort of star chart!

No offence taken Simon, I guess sometimes you just have to try your best and accept somethings won't change!

moanwhingemoan Wed 24-Feb-16 12:12:32

Try asking her to give new foods a kiss, with no pressure to eat. It takes out the fear they might have to eat it, gives them a taste and they often eat it! DS1 was a terrible eater, he is so much better now (incidentally being Pfb he had home cooked weaning meals), DS2 had far more ells pouches, jars and eats anything so don't blame yourself.
A fab book called help my child won't eat by someone gondolas (sp) really helped me.

JaniceJoplin Wed 24-Feb-16 12:23:42

My eldest has a terrible diet and ate loads of those pouches too. My younger girl eats more variety of things and had none of those either! Maybe coincidental...

crappyday Wed 24-Feb-16 12:34:36

My DS eats very few vegetables. He will eat chocolate courgette cake (good food website). There are also recipes out there for chocolate brownies with spinach in, and other ideas for hiding veg.
Cheesy sweetcorn frittas I purée the batter so he doesn't notice the sweetcorn.

It does improve- DS has gone from no veg at all, to liking mushrooms, parsnips and will now eat a few peas or sweetcorn. And sometimes other veg if it's covered in tomato sauce (which is veg!)

I make veg sauce- lots of random veg boiled up with tinned tomatoes and puréed, and then use it to top pizza bases.

BarbarianMum Wed 24-Feb-16 13:20:23

When ds2 got very constipated (aged 6) we sat him down and explained that his diet and refusal to drink much were to blame and that he had to drink more and eat more fruit and veg if he wanted not to have tummy pain. Over the past 18mo his diet has improved (Movicol is still plays an important role too, its not all prunes and good wishes) and he knows he has to eat 5 a day, that jam and ketchup don't count, and drink his whole big drink at mealtimes before he can leave the table. He still moans a lot but is mostly compliant.

I'm not suggesting you force your dd into submission but have you talked to her about this? With ds2 we made it clear he had to be part of the solution and that he had to make positive choices about what he ate - choosing 2 veg to have for dinner fe, or finding 3 more fruit that he likes. A certain amount of 'no yogurt til you've had for 5 a day' still goes on, though.

ouryve Wed 24-Feb-16 13:31:03

We just keep pushing at the edges with DS2's diet. We've found out some things quite by accident such as him not liking baked potatoes, but enjoying the skin off tem, if it's nicely crispy. He has a fruit or veg muffin in his lunch bag every day and, while they're not healthy by any means, has developed a liking for proper onion rings, including the onion in them (not a healtyh or useful amount of veg, but still pushing the boundaries, taste and texture wise.)

He'll have baked beans once or twice a week (any more and he gets bored of them - plus he'll only eat them cooked in a pan from a freshly opened tin, so no opening a tin and serving it over several days!) and he has a hot cross bun with his breakfast, so gets a bit of fibre from dried fruit.

Sadly, we've had to abandon houmous, as it was aggravating a lick rash on his face (will try again in summer) and we have limited opportunity to serve him peanut butter, which he loves, as DS1 can't stand the smell.

Barbarian's approached has helped to keep DS1 regular - he likes fruit and veg but goes through phases of craving only junk but can't be taken with DS2 as his problems are far bigger than that.

ouryve Wed 24-Feb-16 13:31:56

Oh - and as per the currently running thread about fruit, DS2 loves it cooked into a pie!!!

chocomochi Wed 24-Feb-16 21:08:50

Don't think her diet is bad in general. Agree about the lack of fruit and veg.

Have you tried cauliflower rice? My DDs do like veg, but won't eat cauliflower but don't notice it when I finely chop into mac and cheese or rice dishes.

Chocolate cake and courgette (mentioned above) and also chocolate cake with beetroot are great.

NuzzleandScratch Fri 26-Feb-16 07:46:25

Thanks so much for the replies, I will reply properly at the weekend.

MrsJayy Fri 26-Feb-16 07:58:06

Now 22yr dd was a terrible eater i used to cry about it she weaned fine but by the time she was 2 she started refusing vegtables then fruit and a million and other things by the time she was 7 I would always get her to try things she would eat carrot raw apple salad veg banannas and grapes. Was talking to her a while back and she said she hates textures and cant stand wet food like stews hot veg soup etc could that be whats up with your DD

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