The first thing to say is that you are not alone. Fussy eating is very common; research shows that up to 60% of children have fussy eating issues. It can take the form of:
If you recognise any or all of those behaviours then you know how stressful mealtimes can be. If more food seems to end up on the floor than in their tummy, it’s natural to be concerned that your child might be missing out on important nutrients.
The good news is that most children will grow out of this phase and they will eventually start to accept a wider range of foods.2 Pancake toppings are a great way to introduce your child to new flavours. Find out more
PaediaSure Shake is here to provide peace of mind that your picky eater is getting the essential nutrients they need to grow and thrive, while you work towards healthy, happy mealtimes.
Start with giving your child something small to try, like a single pea. Then try to increase the amount very slightly each time you offer it to them until they’re eating the correct portion size for their age.
When you give your child something new to eat be casual about it, as if it’s nothing important. If they don’t try it, keep your cool and don’t react. Children pick up on our moods and will quickly associate that food with negative emotions.
Take your time there’s no rush. Don’t bombard your child with lots of new flavours at once. Slowly introduce them over time and add the occasional new food to a meal they like.
Kids love filling in charts and putting stickers on things. Every time they try a new food, reward them by giving them a new sticker or letting them colour in a new vegetable on their “taste chart”.
Children tend to copy their friends. If your child has a friend who’s a more adventurous eater, invite them around for tea. Your child will be more likely to try a new food if they see a friend eat it. Your child will also likely pick up signals from your own eating habits. Modelling your healthy and relaxed relationship with food teaches your kids that its safe and enjoyable to eat different types of food.
“Daisy barely eats anything. I was worried. A friend suggested PaediaSure Shake. I wasn’t sure she’d even try it but she loves it! I buy the ready-to-drink bottles. Now I don’t feel so stressed because I know she isn’t missing out on nutrition. Her appetite has improved, too. Happy days!”
- Michelle & Daisy
1. Leal LO et al. Open Nutr J 2012;6:123-130.
2. Great Ormond Street Hospital, 2009: http://www.gosh.nhs.uk/medical-information/general-health-advice/food-and-diet/fussy-eaters Accessed 16th September 2020