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Help me feed my daughter *updated*

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
*we are pretty sure she has oral aversion and will start seeing a therapist soon to help her learn to eat*

She is 15 months old and eats only sporadically.
For example:
Friday had a mini vanilla ice cream cone at the state fair, just the ice cream though about 1/8 cup
Sunday licked a few pickle slices
Monday a few licks of spaghetti sauce from a spoon

Throughout the week I offer a variety of foods a few times a day. I give her pieces of what I'm eating but she just wants to play with them. She will occasionally eat baby purreed food.

She won't eat anything she has to chew, she gags and spits up

She won't eat anything that we feed her, she wants to do it herself. Even doing it herself she only will lick a little off her fingers.

what kinds of food should we try? do you think she needs to see a therapist (one of the kids in her playgroup saw one for eating problems and it helped imensely).
post #2 of 14
Abi was the exact same way for the longest time. At 15 mos old she only ate rice and baby food, soft bread, and a few other select things. She has had a strong gag reflex since birth. You could take your dd to a feeding therapist, but you could also just give it time. As long as she's gaining weight and nursing or getting good nutrition in some way she probably going to be just fine.

I didn't nurse, but my dd was on formula for a long time, and then I switched her to cows milk with vitamins added. Only in the last few months has she started eating regular food like a child her age "should", and she's taller than average for her age and very active and healthy.

With her, I just gave her creamy foods at first, soft things, simple foods like Cheerios. Nothing too complicated. A nice baby food that many in India use is "curd rice." It's white rice (brown was too hard for dd to chew), with a little yogurt mashed in, a pinch of salt, and some gravy from sambar (bean stew). It's very nutritious and Abi loved it.

If she's still not eating well when she's around 24 mos. then perhaps take her to the ped's office, but it probably is just a matter of time.

post #3 of 14
My vote is for give it time.

My ds is two in October and is just starting to eat meals. Not every day, and not very much, but enough that I am worrying a lot less. I know how it feels!! Up until about a month ago he would eat maybe 2 apple slices, a few bites of soup, some bread, maybe 5 crackers... this would be over the course of a week, not a day! He is still nursing, and is very active so I have just tried to trust that his body knows what it needs, and that he will take what he needs out of all the food I offer him.

He'll eat 1/2 a banana, several crackers, some cheese, scrambled eggs, veggies & pasta or rice all in one day now.

All his friends eat TONS of food so it's hard not to feel like something is wrong - and he is about 10 lbs. lighter than his friends, but dh and I are slim so I think it's just how he is. I think a food therapist at this age sounds nuts but I have never heard of that and don't know anything about it.

Is your dd energetic? Does she seem happy? I bet she's just a light eater, and will get a bigger appetite as she grows.
post #4 of 14
Keep any comments about her eating to yourself---turning food into an issue with her is the quickest route to an actual eating disorder.

It's very natural for a child her age to be just picking here and there. It can seem so strange and contrary compared to our overeating/overindulging society, but it's very healthy and normal for her to be picking.

If she seems generally happy and healthy then wipe the food issue from your mind. Be thankful you have food to offer her and trust her to know her own body enough to know when she's hungry and when she's not.

Offer healthy foods and then from there just let it go.
post #5 of 14
I would also give it time if she is getting nutrition from nursing and/or formula or milk /vitmains.

Goo doesn't have this problem, but we do try to not worry about how much she is eating. She'll know how much is right for her.

I don't want to set Goo up for eating disorders either, so we let a lot go

Good luck
post #6 of 14
Have you tried letting her use a spoon and feed herself? Ds was SO picky and now at 17 mo. will eat anything he can feed himself. Its messy at first but they love to feed themselves. Try the "Sassy" brand spoons for toddlers--they have holes that "suction" the food onto the spoon--they really work!
post #7 of 14
My dd eats very healthfully (mostly vegetables and fruits, some whole grain breads, and peanut butter thrown in for the protein factor) but she doesn't eat very MUCH either - still nurses quite frequently during the day. For her, though, I really do think it is an issue with her teeth. At 19 months, she still has only her 4 front teeth. I completely expect her to start eating more when she has grinding teeth to masticate the food better. Maybe your dd is having problems getting the food chewed enough so it goes down more easily.

I'd also try the self-feeding with fork or spoon someone else suggested... usually if I give dd a utensil, she'll eat better.
post #8 of 14
Every child is different and they all develop at their own rates. My older son got teeth early and had 8 teeth by 8 months, but he wouldn't even start solids. He lived on breast milk until probably 12 months then started very few (liquified) solids. He had huge texture issues (loved stuff like yogurt) and ate very little food. He'll be 3 in two weeks and now eats a decent variety of foods. But everything still has to be crunchy or pureed - nothing smushy (raw carrots, not cooked that kind of thing). If it's something he doesn't like, he'd rather not eat.

My second son started grabbing food off our plates at 4 months. We held him off solids until 5, but by then he'd scream if he saw anyone else eat. He's never had anything but table food. Started with banana chunks - yes, chunks, got mad if we smashed it. Now at almost 10 months he has only two teeth but eats meat, veggies (cooked, not pureed), fruits, grains, etc. Just about everything we eat. I've decided (about the teeth thing) if there's a will, there's a way.

Same parents, almost exact same birth weight, two totally different kids. Our baby actually eats more in valume and variety than our toddler!

Let her lead the way, just make sure she's getting enough breast milk which has most the nutrients she needs.
post #9 of 14
Your daughter sounds normal to me, but I’m no expert. Are you nursing? If so, I think she won’t really eat that much “extra food” and that you shouldn’t worry. My daughter didn’t eat anything, really, until I stopped breastfeeding.
I just wanted to let you know about my favorite toddler food. My daughter eats “jelly French toast” every morning (on and off for about 6 months). Anyway, I soak a piece of wheat bread in one egg (poke holes in to so it soaks up the entire egg) and then cook in a little butter and then put good jelly/preserves on it. It’s fairly easy to chew, healthy and easy to make. My daughter also eats bologna, which I never would have bought for her but they give it out to kids in the meat markets where I live.
Also, try lots of things. I would never have tried olives for my daughter but a friend did and she loves them! She also liked fish at your daughter's age.

Good luck.
post #10 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thanks Hannah, I"m pretty sure she's not normal though. All the other kids in her playgroup eat real food. They are all eating meals a day. So I guess that's why I'm worried
post #11 of 14
every child is different. again, if she's healthy and happy then let it be. have healthy foods available for her, make no issue of it and let the rest go.
post #12 of 14
Your dd is so cute and VERY healthy looking (judging by the photo). I'd say keep offering her healthy foods and keep up the nursing for an excellent boost. It's very common for breastfed toddlers to be less enthusiastic about solids than others. My 15 month old dd is quite the same way.
post #13 of 14
my 19 month old isnt eathing much either. And i just found out at his last wic appointment that not only has he not gained weight in about 6 months, but he actually LOST weight last month!!!

i was quite alarmed, and the WIC people told me to take him to his ped. this is a kid who was born 9 pounds 5 ounces, and was a chunk forever, so its especialy weird seeing him get so skinny.

BUT the doc was not that concerned. she said to just add lots more fat to his diet. but that i shouldnt freak out or anything. if you are really worried and your gut is saying something is wrong, start putting fatty stuff in or on whatever she will eat.

also now that i have become more diligent, he IS eathing a teeny bit more. i experement with how i offer, sometimes doing it almost absentmindedly, like just casually handing him something wihtout saying anything as i walk by, looking "preoccupied", sometimes i put food in a fun bowl he likes, etc etc ....and that seems to help. i am lacing everything with butter , tahini, peanut butter, cheese , etc that i can. scrambled eggs with cream mixed in instead of milk!!!!! etc.

anyway STILL my doc wasnt concerned, and that made me feel better. so if anyhting go to her ped just to take the weight off your mind.
post #14 of 14
My dd eats pretty good most days, but we always find that if WE are eating something that she can manage (working on the back veggie chomping teeth : ) she will eat a better variety of foods. Have you tried that? Hope you find a solution; I know it can be scary. FWIW, i have a friend whose 19 month old is still a fiendishly picky eater adn nurses very frequently. She is 34" and about 29 pounds, a VERY healthy and big girl.
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