Diet help for 3 year old(9 Posts)
I really hope some posters can offer advice. I will be making a doctors appointment in the morning but I would appreciate any real life experiences/ recommendactions.
I have 3 children. They are raised in the same style / same opportunities. The eldest and youngest eat so healthily. They naturally prefer fruit and veg and just eat anything.
The 3 year old middle child has a terrible diet. He won't eat a single fruit. He will eat veg but I have to feed and encourage him to the point where I am ignoring the others completely.
He didn't eat his breakfast today. He ate only half a sausage at lunchtime (under coercion) and had no dinner. He did eat one fruit compote which is the closest thing to fruit he will eat.
He has been up tonight crying and screaming that his bottom is sore. I think he is constipated.
I am so torn. I don't know how to help him. The healthy foods are here. He won't touch them. He would rather go without.
I guess what I'm asking is, should I force him? Waiting for him to do it hasn't achieved anything. I'm worried for his health.
Tomorrow should I cut up a pear and tell him he's getting nothing else / doing nothing else until he's eaten some?
I am so worried for him.
Forcing him won't help at all and might cause further problems.
Speak to the doctor, it could be anything......not liking taste, not liking texture, not hungry (I know you're really upset but some kids just have no appetite). It could literally be anything. Wait til you hear from a professional, but don't be fobbed off. X
Sounds like my daughter (2.5 years)
Recently paid for some advice which is helping (partly because we are stressing less when she doesn't eat for several meals in a row!)
In a nutshell:
Always eat with them and no getting up to clear up etc during that time
Ignore them if not eating, talk about food if eating, and do not praise for eating
Don't make a big deal if they don't eat, they will not starve themselves and can get by on tiny amounts of food
Keep offering healthy varied diet and don't give them crap instead if they don't eat
He's getting a lot of your attention by being picky.
Is he radically underweight? Has he fallen off the percentile chart? Is he malnourished?
Take a step back. Offer the same food as the others. Let him decide to eat or not. It's fine. Don't pass comment. Don't beg. Don't nag. Enjoy eating and chatting together as a family. Make meal times positive.
If he doesn't eat at meal times and is hungry later, try reoffering his meal.
If you are seriously worried for his health seek medical help.
Thanks everyone. User147, this has pretty much been our approach. We haven't made any progress though. He's not under weight at all. He has less energy than the others but not so bad that it stops him playing like his friends and siblings.
I will seek medical advice regarding the diet tomorrow thanks.
Tonight's panicked has come to a slight resolution - he has worms. That explains the crying and sore bottom.
Thanks for your help and advice.
We have a very picky DD (now 4) , and have had dietitians involved in the past. One thing they all agreed on is that you choose what you offer to your child, they choose whether to eat it. Given you have 3 children, I'm assuming you would offer the older two at least the same?
The more detailed advice we were given was: put it in front of them for 20 minutes, then take it away with no negative comment on what they haven't eaten. If it's a meal, it should be balanced (carb/protein/veg).
You can get laxatives if constipation is a problem. Multivitamins are your friend. I used to be very stressed about what DD ate. I chose to be less stressed, though she's still a long way from normal. And she would rather starve herself than eat certain foods - in her case it's a texture issue. Most fruit and veg are wet to the touch (unlike, say, bread), which has been part of the issue for her. We recently added sweetcorn to her fruit and veg range, which provides a bit more variety to broccoli, bananas and strawberries. You are not alone!
Have you tried making him smoothies with fruit and veg?
Thanks Sheepy I think he has a texture issue too. He can and will eat veg but it's an effort. He gags if I even put fruit on a plate in front of him.
I offer all there (and me and dh) the same, it's just that my three year old can't eat it.
Aquamarine yes we have tried smoothies, he can't/won't drink them.
We've tried so many things and we always try not to make a fuss. Last night I was so stressed when he was crying. Ill be calling the doctor when they open.
Anyway, this time the crying was because of worms, but I will look into getting some help re the diet too.
I was going to say that symptoms sounded like worms. Is he a thumb sucker/nail biter....dd was and got worms a lot.
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