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Help!! Advice needed for feeding a now fussy 16 mth old please!!!!!

(27 Posts)
gingermonkey Sat 24-Feb-07 18:17:15

My previously super eater ds has turned fussy. He has never been much of a meat eater (will eat spag bol, cottage/shepherds pie but not meat in it's proper form). I leave him to feed himself (which helps a little) but he would rather eat cheese dippers and blueberries (often together) than the meals I prepare.
I don't despair or push him, and am very relaxed with him when he doesn't eat what I put in front of him but need some tips on what else I can try.
I'll give him his main course, and leave him to play with it, trying him occasionally with a spoon and if he refuses after a while (say 10 or 15 mins) will give him fruit and yoghurt or cheese. He used to eat everything I put in front of him but now he's being a pain in the bum! Can someone give me some tips please.

TheArmadillo Sat 24-Feb-07 18:23:20

IF he doesn't eat don't give him anything until next meal/snack time. Just say 'dinner times over' or similar and get down and play.

Sounds like you're doing good though

gingermonkey Sat 24-Feb-07 18:47:33

Thank you, I do that too (mostly anyway!). He will have a bottle in the morning, then breakfast of cornflakes or weetabix and a fruit smoothie (berries, apple juice and water) which he eats up without a problem. He'll then have a mid morning snack of a few rice cakes or raisins and lunch at 12.30 or so which is usually a sandwich, more rice cakes, fruit and a yoghurt. If he's still a bit peckish he might have some yoghurt covered raisins as a treat or a plain biscuit. He quite likes this kind of thing and will pick at it for a good while but he's not getting enough veg in a sandwich. I also give him cucumber, celery or carrot sticks which he gnaws on but doesn't actually eat (I figure he will eventually!). Then he has another snack in the afternoon of some fruit or rice cakes or crackers and then dinner at 5.30. SOmetimes he is great and will eat it all up but more often than not he just sniffs at it and says NO!!! Just before bed he'll have a smoothie made with milk, banana and half a weetabix and then bed with a bottle at 7. I suppose I just want some reassurance that I'm doing it right. Is there anything you think I should avoid? (sorry it's a long post)

TheArmadillo Sat 24-Feb-07 18:53:17

I think that sounds like a good diet. Missing an evening meal isn't going to do him any harm, so I wouldn't stress about it. I think its just the stubborn entering toddlerdom thing. Carry on not making a fuss and he'll get over it.

All sounds good - you seem to be doing all the right things.

gingermonkey Sat 24-Feb-07 19:16:08

That makes me feel a whole lot better. I have a 7yr old DD who is really fussy and I am determined not to make the same mistakes again! Does anyone have any ideas on meals I could try for him - I'm running out of ideas with the usual cottage pie, spag bol pasta and tomato sauce type of thing.

TheArmadillo Sat 24-Feb-07 19:43:31

rissotto? wiht peas andd chicken?


Very mild curry (spices for taste not heat) and then mix in a bit a yoghurt?

TheArmadillo Sat 24-Feb-07 19:45:58

recipe ideas for kids

ds eats bugger all so don't have many ideas myself. - sorry.

gingermonkey Sat 24-Feb-07 20:04:32

At least mine isn't the only one!

TheArmadillo Sat 24-Feb-07 20:10:11

It's fun isn't it

Ds has had a heavy cold recently and decided as a result he would go back to basically eating almost nothing (one day = 2 spoons of yoghurt, a packet of raisins and part of a rice cake). And then only eating random foods (today was a whole box of strawberries, half a banana and 2 pieces of cheese). Sounds even worse when I write it down <sigh>

I keep reminding myself that apparently he will grow out of it someday (he's 2.4) and he's so much better than he used to be.

Hopefully within a few weeks we will be back to at least two meals a day.

TheArmadillo Sat 24-Feb-07 20:11:58

sorry for the small rant.

He is no where near as bad as he used to be, but have been really stressed recently and it makes me more obsessive about it.

gingermonkey Sat 24-Feb-07 20:16:36

I know the feeling! DD is 7 and she hasn't grown out of it yet and that's what worries me! (tho she is getting better and I have banned additives and that has helped). It just winds me up so much when he used to be so good, he'd eat spinach ffs and now sneers at anything like that and does that annoying spitting thing with his head turned away (that toddlers are soooo very good at!)

Miaou Sat 24-Feb-07 20:19:50

My ds (18m) is going through this phase atm - I think it's a sensory thing as much as anything. He used to eat anything quite happily but spits out more than he eats atm! I'm doing the same things as you really - but I have to say that he doesn't get any snacks between meals so is eating far less than yours is! Overall I think your ds is getting plenty to eat, and a fairly varied diet. I would say you are doing all the right things, particularly leaving him to it and not getting stressed about it. I truly believe it's a phase they will work through at their own pace

gingermonkey Sat 24-Feb-07 20:24:54

Miaou, my boy's a big lad!!! He can eat (well, he used to!) Before fussiness came along he would have breakfast, cooked lunch, cooked dinner and sandwich and weetabix supper with snacks in between. The HV used to tell me I was feeding him too much, but he is always well within the 75th percentile and is very active and I figured that if he was hungry he should eat (I am the same and I'm not overweight!)

pointydog Sat 24-Feb-07 20:25:54

have you tried him with toddler smorgasbord?

Separate things on a plate. Like fish finger or chicken strips in breadcrumbs plus little new potatoes plus cucumber sticks or peas. That sort of thing.

Sounds like he enjoys separate foods for a meal.

Miaou Sat 24-Feb-07 20:32:40

Ah right gingermonkey! My ds is little (I'm still turning up the sleeves and legs in 12-18m clothes!).

Pointydog, call me a mean mummy, but ds has to eat what the rest of us eat, dh isn't cooking separate meals for him. Consequently he may have to go a little hungry whilst he works his way through this phase

gingermonkey Sat 24-Feb-07 20:33:20

No. I will though. He eats peas, he picks them up and nibbles on them. Potatos of any kind are a no no (he hates the texture) but I will try the fish finger/chicken nugget idea. Thank you.

gingermonkey Sat 24-Feb-07 20:35:54

Bless him, Miaou! DS also eats what we eat, usually the day after because we eat later than him (and I need to enjoy my dinner rather than half eat it!). I will eat with him though, I'll eat some of his food (I get hungry and it's going to waste!)

pointydog Sat 24-Feb-07 20:36:55

Ah, miaou! I was loathe to post on this thread because there are a fair number of posters of the 'they will eat what we eat and make do' opinion.

That's not my opinion and I didn't know how gingermonkey felt about it so I went ahead and posted anyway.

And I didn't cook separate meals on weekdays. I made stuff we all liked/ate with some tweaks made to the kids' meals.

Miaou Sat 24-Feb-07 20:40:00

pointydog, I wasn't criticising - it's a valid way of handling the business, particularly if you are worried that your child isn't getting enough to eat. But I am Hard Mummy

gingermonkey Sat 24-Feb-07 20:40:07

I'll eat chicken nuggets and fish fingers anyday - DD gets very excited when I make them for her (I make them, not Mr. Sainsbury!). When I do make them they tend to all get eaten though so poor ds hasn't had them before, will have to make a few extra and leave them uncooked and away from greedy me!

gingermonkey Sun 25-Feb-07 19:41:55

Bump. Please give me some advice!!!

gingermonkey Mon 26-Feb-07 19:20:35

so today he has eaten bugger all really. He had his breakfast (smoothie, shredded wheats) but hasn't really wanted to eat much else. It's getting annoying now and my patience is running out. We went for lunch with my friend and her dd who's 22 months and she ate loads and he just looked at her like she was mental.

washingqueen Mon 26-Feb-07 19:56:18

DS (19 mths) also going through this phase. I must admit I am fairly strict and enforce a 'no main meal; no yoghurt or milk' policy.

He usually gets offered a portion of whatever myself and DH are eating. It does seem to help that he sees us eating the same meal as him - sometimes he will insist on eating the food off our plates instead of his own!!

Generally, anything in a tomato-based sauce goes down well - so we just mince up veggies and hide them in that. I agree with the Korma suggestion....made with a bit of chicken chopped in the blender and lots of veggies (sometimes just with the veggies)always guaranteed to go down a treat.

I find that cooking in advance and freezing meals reduces my stress levels.

I hate to say "don't get worked up about it" but personally I like to believe it is just a phase that will pass (PLEASE please do not shatter my dreams here!!)

washingqueen Mon 26-Feb-07 20:11:21

A cruel suggestion... but have you tried temporarily not offering the afternoon snack? I do this with DS if he doesn't eat lunch...and it makes him really hungry by evening meal time, meaning he usually eats a bit more enthusiastically.

Just want to say does sound like your DS has a pretty healthy diet - I have read somewhere that with kids you should look at their food intake from a weekly rather daily basis, as some days they will eat nothing and others will eat loads.

gingermonkey Mon 26-Feb-07 20:18:21

I was thinking about doing that today (then DH had him this afternoon and gave him a snack because he was hungry!). Think I will try it tomorrow. He's having chicken nuggets and peas and I'm going to make him potato wedges tomorrow (not that he'll eat them because he hates potatoes!) which was suggested by Miaou. I agree about the eating of our plate thing. He often will eat if he sees his sister eating, but has started to get really stubborn in the past few weeks. He'll sit and feed his toys (that sometimes helps too) but not himself.

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