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would this work? fussy eating

(50 Posts)
susia Mon 04-Aug-08 22:00:59

Hi,
We have a very fussy 5 year old with regards eating and have tried loads of things over the years including trying our best with encouragement and trying new foods to letting him eat only what he wants (sort of worked but meant he wasn't joining in family meals) to allergy testing etc.

Just suddenly though how about saying to him that he could have 1 treat (crisps, chocolate whatever...) but that I would cook him a meal every night of what I choose from the foods he likes. If he doesn't make a fuss but leaves it, he can only have a banana afterwards before bed. But if eats some of it or all of it and doesn't make a fuss he can have his treat afterwards?!

Is that too complex for a five year old? Is it too strict/too lenient???

staranise Mon 04-Aug-08 22:08:03

I wouldn't really recommend splitting food into 'treat' food and 'normal' food.

But then, i've used a star chart for stuff like eating up meals and I know many people don't like them either.

I have one good eater (aged 4) and one poor eater (aged 2) - nothing has worked for the latter, so far. If she refuses her food, it gets taken away and she doesn't get pudding (fruit or yoghurt or occasional biscuit etc) but she's not bothered in the slightest. Am hoping she'll jsut grow out of it if I don't make a big fuss about eating in general and keep presenting her with all types of food. But she is much younger than your DS.

SilkCutMama Mon 04-Aug-08 22:11:11

what does he eat?

susia Mon 04-Aug-08 22:11:56

I think what I'm describing is kind of what you do (also what I do)- I don't really give treats if he hasn't eaten at the moment.

But I'm thinking of making it more clear cut to him - ie if he doesn't eat he doesn't need to say anything and I will take the plate away but then that will be the end of eating that evening.

susia Mon 04-Aug-08 22:15:41

what he eats is bread, cereal, pasta, some veg, fruit, chicken, tuna, eggs etc (which sounds good )but nothing mixed, no sauces, wet (eg pies, fishfingers, gravy, tomatoes...) and only brands he knows.

He nutritional diet is good but antisocial and doesn't fit with the family. He either has a separate meal to us or we eat his food. (eg chicken with raw veg! or boiled eggs and crackers!)

ChasingSquirrels Mon 04-Aug-08 22:22:04

I was a very fussy eater as a child, and am not much better now.
Quite honestly I HATE the texture of lots of foods (can't stand rice for example - and as SO MANY people have said - what could be more bland?).
I wish that I did eat a more varied diet, but the majority of things which I don't like actually make me gag. There are others which I just don't like, but would eat out of politeness if served them.

Couldn't you make meals which are similar - sauce on the side, cook your veg and not his etc?

I do appreciate how wearing it must be, but I also feel for him.

SilkCutMama Mon 04-Aug-08 22:26:44

I didn't like mixed things when a child. Had pasta with sauce on the side

My ds is the same - so that's what I give him

His diet sounds ok tbh, but you are clearly worried and want to change things

I ate cheese on toast for a whole year when I was 13. My mum refused to cook for me as I didn't like any of her food.
I was fine then and I am fine now!!

I think it all sorts itself out. So long as he isn't eating choc, crisps, maccie d's, cake and pop all day then he should be ok

Maybe try a picnic with other things?? Make it exciting???

susia Mon 04-Aug-08 22:28:06

I really feel for him because he does try to please me about most things.

Food he doesn't like makes him gag and vomit. I am not considering cooking him things he doesn't like but an example;

this evening I cooked him chips, I never ever cook chips but at the weekend we stayed with a friend who cooked chips and he loved them. So this evening as a treat, I said I'd cook chips (he was already in a mood as he wanted crisps before supper). Anyway as I don't have a chip pan they weren't from my friends but still fried. Anyway he wouldn't eat them because they weren't the same.

So I am not suggesting cooking him things like tomato sauce but things he already likes.

juuule Mon 04-Aug-08 22:28:33

Sounds like he has a good diet.
You don't want to adapt to his way of eating, why force him to adapt to yours?
He'll possibly change as he gets older, anyway.

Octothechildherder Mon 04-Aug-08 22:29:12

Mine don;t like stuff mixed or sauces - I just leave it off and they have the same as us - except salad, which I'm working on!

Octothechildherder Mon 04-Aug-08 22:29:46

I also do bribery (with money) to try new food blush

susia Mon 04-Aug-08 22:30:29

I meant 'they werent the same as' not from 'my friend's'

susia Mon 04-Aug-08 22:34:42

Its not just sauces or mixed foods though, it is anything he doesn't know therefore he only likes certain brands of things, would refuse almost anything in a cafe, restaurant, friend's houses etc
It's getting more difficult and antisocial as he gets older and embarrasing at friend's houses too.

If they ask what he would like, there is no point as anything other than what he completely knows will make him retch and its diff to say to someone 'no he won't eat walls sausages, heinz beans etc' He is 5!!

ChasingSquirrels Mon 04-Aug-08 22:38:01

it does become more antisocial (and limiting as an adult). My best friend mum used to ask if I wanted to stay for tea, I would ask what they were having and base my decision on the answer - now I look back and think "how rude", but I also know that I would WANT to ask that nowadays.

I hope that you can find some answers, both for you are for your ds.

juuule Mon 04-Aug-08 22:38:49

Why is it difficult to say?
If he doesn't like them, he doesn't like them.
I've done this with some of my children. In fact, if I've known we would be eating out, I've taken food that I know they will eat or we've gone somewhere that I know would have food they like.
Some have grown out of it and eat most things. One is still very fussy.

Octothechildherder Mon 04-Aug-08 22:38:50

You need to put your foot down and stop this now - stand your ground!

juuule Mon 04-Aug-08 22:39:38

Octo -hmm

Octothechildherder Mon 04-Aug-08 22:41:05

I did give some useful advice before but refusing certain brands is crazy. Its not like he doesn't like the food type, its the packet it comes in.

juuule Mon 04-Aug-08 22:42:50

I'm not so sure.
I prefer some brands to others.
There are differences.

Octothechildherder Mon 04-Aug-08 22:43:13

I would be mortified if I had to say to another parent - yes, xxx can come for tea, but he'll only eat heinz beans, kingsmill bread and olivio fgs - they are children - some choices simply are not theirs.

susia Mon 04-Aug-08 22:43:26

Octo I wish it was that simple though! there is no way that putting my down has worked as I have tried that!

Octothechildherder Mon 04-Aug-08 22:43:44

Yes but you are an adult.

Octothechildherder Mon 04-Aug-08 22:45:28

That was to juule btw!

Susia - I can't see things getting better unless you take control of the situation. Good luck!

susia Mon 04-Aug-08 22:46:53

I just wish I could explain to you how it that doesn't work but I haven't got the time to explain it all. The point is it hasn't worked and doesn't and is not that simple!

juuule Mon 04-Aug-08 22:48:37

Would you? I've done it and my friends have been okay with it. I've had other parents tell me their children's preferences and I've been okay with that, too.

Adults have preferences over which food they will eat, why shouldn't children. With some of mine their tastes have changed at various ages.

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