All parents go through the toddler stage with their children. This is a very cute stage, our babies are bigger and say the cutest things. They still invoke that urge to shower them with little kisses. They are a prize we like to show off, often comparing with other kids. But one thing that causes stress in this phase is the feeding issue. A lot of children turn out to be picky eaters in this age. Many of them suffer from a phobia of new foods. Some of them are happy to just have milk, refusing all solids. Some children want to eat only a select handful of foods, and then there are some children who don't want to eat anything at all. These are our picky eaters and their parents are the ones most likely to make mistakes.
If you have a picky eater child, you are probably making one of these mistakes. It's not your fault at all, it's just that parents get so disturbed by their child not eating, that it's perfectly natural to make such mistakes. However, if you wish your toddler to inculcate healthy eating habits in the long term, now is the time to start setting the foundation.
1. Force Feeding: If she doesn't want to eat, respect it. Force feeding tends to become a pattern and your baby will start resisting all meals without discimination.
2. Insisting on Polishing Everything Off the Plate: This could be a virtue amongst adults but little babies who are just learning to eat and chew can be spared this good habit. Also, remember that you decided the amount to be put on their plate, without checking with them. So be okay with your child leaving some food uneaten.
3. Improper Snacking: Cakes and biscuits are high in much-needed calories but they set a pattern. Introduce other dishes like fruit custard, rice pudding, pancake with fruit or simple carrot halwa. The time of snacks is also important. If you give your child a snack 30-40 minutes before a meal-time, you can hardly expect her to be hungry for the meal.
4. Pleading or Threatening: Don't make meals an emotional tug-of-war that you have to win.
5. Giving up Too Easily: If your child refuses a food item, don't just assume that she will never eat it again. Try again in 2-3 days. Preferences change, and remember that some foods require a bit of getting used to.