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Extreme fussy eating in 21 month old

(18 Posts)
Ineedabettername Tue 11-Feb-14 14:11:36

Hi can anyone advise me? Dd4 is 21 months old. The only things she will eat are chips, waffles, bread and butter, baked beans, spaghetti hoops, toast, fromage frais, bananas, biscuits.
I give her the same as what her sisters are having but if it's not any of the above she just screams no and refuses to eat. It's awful that the things she does actually eat are hardly healthy. She won't touch eggs-however there cooked, pizza, pasta, cheese, vegetables, mashed potato. It's a nightmare trying to think of things to feed her. They only meal she reliably eats is porridge,weetabix or shreddies at breakfast. Any tips please?

JiltedJohnsJulie Tue 11-Feb-14 20:22:12

Can totally sympathise as my dd was just the same at that age. She's still fussy but its much better now.

Can I just ask you what you do when she refuses food?

TheGreatHunt Tue 11-Feb-14 20:31:30

Put one thing she will eat on her plate plus other stuff that her sisters are having.

And give no attention whatsoever if she doesn't eat. Ignore ignore ignore.

Not eating eggs is no big deal though! They don't agree with everyone.

JiltedJohnsJulie Tue 11-Feb-14 20:42:11

Agree with great. We often put something on her plate that she will eat and some of what everyone else is having. It takes the pressure of how we feel as at least she has eaten something and if you ignore their protests enough, they sometimes try the protest food smile

Ineedabettername Tue 11-Feb-14 21:25:51

Thanks for the replies :-)

Tbh we don't make a fuss when she doesn't eat, it's just so frustrating that it goes to waste and she won't even try it. Tonight they had pasta, fun size sausage rolls and garlic bread. She cried (doesn't talk yet) throughout refused it and nibbled on the garlic bread. Pudding was a fromage frais and a banana.

It's so hard, I'm already dreading tomorrow's lunch :-(

JiltedJohnsJulie Tue 11-Feb-14 21:30:10

Garlic bread, Fromage fraise and a banana should be enough though. Perhaps he's just not that hungry and knows she gets a good pudding?

TheGreatHunt Tue 11-Feb-14 21:59:42

That's quite a lot of carbs... Also my two wouldn't eat that (sorry) - well they'd eat the yoghurt and a bit of pizza. But they don't like sausage rolls or pizza unless home made and I don't think they're fussy.

How about trying less processed foods? (you mentioned waffles, the sausage rolls, the pizza). Mine like home made stuff and simple meals.

TelephoneTree Tue 11-Feb-14 22:14:17

One thing that we do/did that seems to work on visiting kids too is that i have a plate of cut up carrots, pepper and cucumber lying around all day for the kids to pick at. I pick from it too and they see that and it's just part of life. I think part of it for some kids is getting used to seeing and touching food before they will readily eat it?

Her taste buds seem to be favouring the sweet so maybe cut out everything with sugar in it for 2 weeks (check labels too) and get her taste buds in to a more normal range? And cut out snacks if she's picky at meal times. You will need to squeeze meal times slightly closer together to compensate probably but then you could add a 4th one just before bed (plain porridge).

ianleeder Tue 11-Feb-14 23:09:48

Ignore her, put one thing she will eat on her plate. Keep offering different meals and make no fuss. Keep expanding her food range and limit snacks and processed food. Make sure she is not full on juice or milk. Keep her busy so she's hungry for food. She will eat when she's hungry.

ianleeder Tue 11-Feb-14 23:14:24

My 5 year old is fussy but he's getting better. His food range has expand and he could happily eat everything homemade now (no processed bread- crumb stuff anymore!). It does take time. I was like you, everything I made went in the bin but he's eating is getting better. We ignore him and make no fuss. It gets better over time. smile

Ineedabettername Wed 12-Feb-14 19:41:26

Processed food is a problem I know. I find it hard to find the time to cook from scratch with 4 under 6 and only one in full time school. I can't imagine going sugar free-it's everywhere. They hardly ever have sweets or cake ect. I've made a rod for my own back here I know. Her sisters aren't much better really. Maybe I need to come down tough on all of them but I don't think I have the mental strength to handle full of wailing 4 times over :-(

Thanks for the replies

marjolaine Wed 12-Feb-14 20:53:55

I have this problem with DS2 (22mo). He was a good eater up to a couple of months ago but now a lot of what is put in front of him he refuses. DS1 has always been a good/solid eater so I feel a bit at a loss but we have a house policy of I decide what food is served and they decide what food is eaten so just ignore it and keep offering healthy things. The first few times I was concerned and gave him cheese/yoghurt (his fave foods) to make sure he had eaten something but now I'm onto him he gets the standard fare of as healthy as I can make it (e.g. yoghurts sweetened with fruit juice instead of sugar). He eats relatively well at nursery so it's either peer pressure there or attention-seeking at home.

TheGreatHunt Wed 12-Feb-14 21:03:23

You can have home made stuff in the freezer - eg batch cook tomato sauce and freeze in portions. This can form the base of meals with pasta eg meatballs, tuna, chicken? Would be quicker than something in the oven. Also freeze the bases of homemade pizza then cook from frozen. Freeze bolagnaise sauce, chicken casseroles etc etc.

ianleeder Wed 12-Feb-14 21:19:40

Op: you need to be Strong and don't give in. I have 2 kids- 3 and 5 so I totally sympathise. I have to plan and prepare the meals for the week in advance. I stick to my meal plan which is less stressful for me so we all know what we are having. mon-weds I am at work so they eat at school). Thursday: homemade pizza. Friday: rice/ fish or meat day. Sat: pasta day. Sunday: comfort food such roast. They have unlimited fruits and veg. I rotate different dishes and I try new recipe but I stick with the same formula as I know we will eat it. This might not work for you but what I'm trying to say is that you can do your food shopping in bulk to save time, Peel or dice the veg the night before if possible, marinate the meat when they are in bed etc. you have to be organised if you want them to eat quick healthy home cooked meal. As with sweet food, you can bake your own cake with less sugar and add some grated fruit or veg. It does take time but don't feel disheartened if they don't eat it. Keep serving healthy meals, involve them with the cooking process too. You can be creative when serving their meals ie making pizza face, shapes sandwiched etc. good luck! You can do it!!

ianleeder Wed 12-Feb-14 21:50:26

Btw.. Recommend 2 books 1) my child won't eat. Read this book as it will make you relaxed with the whole eating thing! 2) deceptively delicious simple secrets to get your kids eating good food- Great recipes with hidden veg and fruits that they won't even know! grin

Ineedabettername Thu 13-Feb-14 08:47:20

Thanks again folks, shall look those books up Ian, cheers

Gileswithachainsaw Thu 13-Feb-14 08:58:22

I think the first step would be for you all to eat better. I don't wish to sound rude but it all sounds very carby and junky. Upsetting her won't get anywhere so I'd stick to giving her what she will eat as the last thing you want is tears and a battle time every mealtime. She's not even two she doesn't understand.

Perhaps meal plan and batch cook? Nothing wrong with left overs either. Do a big batch of mince then turn into shepherds pie or a chilli the following day. Once you've figured all that out you can make sure that there's lovely crunchy steamed veg on the table for you to share, a nice salad etc so on too of what she's eating she has the option to try new healthier things.

Puddings I'd stick to fruit. Chop it up make it look pretty. Would they eat something like baked tinned peaches (empty can into oven proof dish, sprinkle over nutmeg and cinnamon ) then serve with a scoop of ice cream.

Banana custard?

Plain fruit salad with natural yogurt?

I think before you tackle the fussyness you need to get her to enjoy meal times again. If she's happy and sees you all helping yourself to veg or salad she might be more receptive to trying it.

Gileswithachainsaw Thu 13-Feb-14 09:00:30

Sorry that doesn't make sense I mean give her what she eats but make sure there's stuff available for her to try. Bring the shepherds pie to the table let her see it and she might choose to have some along side what she has. Once she's tried it she might like it and eat a bit more of it when u have the left overs the next day.

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