12 month old only wants to eat fruit and sweet things... - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 33 Old 05-20-2010, 02:27 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My 12 month old daughter will eat fruit all day long--we call her our fruit bat! Strawberries, bananas, blueberries, oranges, grapefruit, kiwi, mango, you name it--she'll devour it. She also happily eats peanut butter on her bananas (her favourite thing in the world), and she sucks back green smoothies with lots of spinach and yogurt like there's no tomorrow. She loves homemade fruit leather (just fruit pureed and dehydrated) and will eat yogurt with fruit puree or applesauce stirred in, as well. In an effort to get some more concentrated calories into her, I also made a raw bar the other day with some raw cacao, a bit of honey, hemp seeds, dehydrated apples, and coconut oil and she loves that (of course--it's sweet ).

The thing is, that's pretty much all she'll eat in any quantity. She'll pick at bits of savoury foods here and there--she'll gnaw on a finger of bread or a corn tortilla triangle (sometimes with a bit of cheese, guacamole or nut butter), eat a dozen or so black beans and a grain or two of rice, maybe a few pieces of pasta with tomato sauce or cheese sauce... and then she'll do the sign for "all done" and push her chair back from the table. The thing is, I know she's not full, because if I then offer her some fruit, she'll eat a ton of it. She'll also drink cow's milk copiously, but I'm not really very keen on that and would prefer her to get yogurt and cheese more often.

We pretty much do baby-led weaning and generally offer her what we're eating or components of it, at least when we're all at the table together.

So here's my conundrum. If the meal is savoury and she only picks at it or rejects it entirely, should I a) just accept that she won't eat much and offer the food again in the hopes that she'll start to like it eventually, or b) take away the rejected food and give her something I know she'll eat (fruit) to make sure she doesn't go hungry? Is there another option I'm not seeing? My fear is that she'll develop a pattern of rejecting any food that's savoury or "new" because she knows if she does, she'll get to eat fruit or something else sweet instead, and therefore will never develop a taste for other foods. Within the next few weeks she'll be completely off of formula (she's adopted, so I can't rely on breastmilk as a stopgap for calories/nutrients) and I'm very concerned about ensuring she gets enough nutrition.

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#2 of 33 Old 05-20-2010, 02:55 PM
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If she'll eat green smoothies you can probably make sure her nutrition is pretty complete. You can hide so many things in a smoothie. There are high protein flours you can use in fruit breads, like this http://www.bobsredmill.com/almond-meal-flour.html . Making food an issue will probably make her more picky so just continue offering her a variety of foods and don't make a fuss about what she chooses to eat. Kids go through phases of being picky and eat a larger variety of foods as they get older. Just keep offering. My DD stopped eating green foods for a bit over a year and by 3.5 broccoli and zucchini were favorites again. I've read part of the reason little ones become picky and like sweet so much is sweet things are safe to eat when in the wild and bitter and savory things can be poisonous. Also breastmilk, their main natural food source is sweet.
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#3 of 33 Old 05-20-2010, 07:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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That makes sense about why they'd prefer sweet things. I'm also aware that our bodies are programmed by evolution to "stock up" on sugar and fat (high calorie, high energy) foods when they're available because they used to be far, far less available than they are now.

I already offer her a variety of foods throughout the day. My main concern is whether or not to give her something she WILL eat (fruit) after she rejects what I've offered her (today she rejected eggs, tortillas with cheese, and marinated tofu; she finally ate about two bites of a quinoa-pumpkinseed-cheese-spinach-carrot-tofu fritter I finally made in desperation, and was upset and cranky all afternoon until I gave her a banana with peanut butter and some milk in a sippy cup ). Or do I just take her away from the table and wait until her next meal or snack time and make her go hungry until then? Because that's what she'll do.

The rest of this is just a vent more than anything... I feel like I'm spending all my time and energy trying to get her to eat. I'm ready to cry Today has been hell. I completely believe in the BLW approach and in not making food an issue, but how do I do that if she just won't eat unless it's fruit or something sweet? I hate having her be upset and hungry, and I'm not thrilled with the idea of making special food for her 6 times a day.

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#4 of 33 Old 05-20-2010, 10:21 PM
 
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I guess I would opt for something in the middle. I wouldn't think of it as making my child go hungry. I would think of it as wanting her to have a complete diet and appreciate all foods. We have regularly scheduled meals and snacks in our house, but if someone is hungry before then, they eat when they are hungry. I would never force myself or my child to go hungry and wait until the next mealtime. However, I would say, if you are hungry, these are your choices.

Maybe your daughter is "all done" when she says she is. Then she just shoves fruit in because she likes it, but not because she is actually hungry. My daughter loves fruit too, and I don't care how much of it she eats, as long as she is eating a well-balanced diet. She never has to eat more than she wants to, but if she tells me she wants raspberries and she took three bites of her main course, I tell her if she is hungry she can eat dinner and then have some raspberries. If she isn't hungry, she is free to be done. But filling up on fruit is not one of her choices.

What about foods that will lead to comfort with other foods? Have you tried avocado? That can be a great bridge from fruits to more savory foods. Or if she loves peanut butter and bananas, try spreading pb on some whole grain bread and dotting it with cut up bananas. Introducing new tastes and textures in a way she is comfortable with might make her more happy with the newer foods. Or mix black beans with pineapple? I make black bean and pineapple enchiladas with whole wheat tortillas that dd loves! Or teriyaki chicken? It's sweet, but a good way to introduce chicken.

I must confess that I am only slightly familiar with BLW, so I'm sorry if my advice is against that method.
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#5 of 33 Old 05-20-2010, 11:16 PM
 
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at 12 mos, I remember my ds1 would only eat watermelon and cheerios. That's it. I remember being very concerned. He got over it after a couple of weeks. I continued to serve him plates of watermelon, cheerios, and other things. Eventually he picked up the other things!

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#6 of 33 Old 05-20-2010, 11:33 PM
 
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just keep offering a variety, like others have posted, and try not to worry. my dd isnt really interested in much more than whole wheat toast with butter, bananas, or plain yogurt (although she is still breastfed at least 5 x per day). i agree with the pp who suggested hiding foods in the smoothie for now to get some extra nutrition.

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#7 of 33 Old 05-21-2010, 04:17 AM
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I already offer her a variety of foods throughout the day. My main concern is whether or not to give her something she WILL eat (fruit) after she rejects what I've offered her (today she rejected eggs, tortillas with cheese, and marinated tofu; she finally ate about two bites of a quinoa-pumpkinseed-cheese-spinach-carrot-tofu fritter I finally made in desperation, and was upset and cranky all afternoon until I gave her a banana with peanut butter and some milk in a sippy cup ). Or do I just take her away from the table and wait until her next meal or snack time and make her go hungry until then? Because that's what she'll do.

The rest of this is just a vent more than anything... I feel like I'm spending all my time and energy trying to get her to eat. I'm ready to cry Today has been hell. I completely believe in the BLW approach and in not making food an issue, but how do I do that if she just won't eat unless it's fruit or something sweet? I hate having her be upset and hungry, and I'm not thrilled with the idea of making special food for her 6 times a day.
You are stressing too much about it. Don't try to get her to eat. Just make food for everyone. If she doesn't want it, have something she likes handy and let her eat whenever she wants. Humans naturally know how much food they need and when they need to eat. Your job is to have healthy foods to offer. Making food an issue by trying to entice her to eat or making her wait to eat if she rejects dinner can just make her a pickier eater or teach her to ignore her bodies cues and eat when you want instead of when her body needs to. Don't worry she will eat a larger variety of food if it keeps being offered and food isn't an issue. Don't worry about her toddler food habits becoming permanent. Toddlers eat like toddlers and then grow out of it. Just like all their other toddler behaviors.

Lots of healthy foods are sweet, grape tomatoes and sweet potato are and have different nutrients than most fruit. A banana with peanut butter and milk is actually a pretty balanced meal. I kept a snack tray so my DD could eat when she wanted. For example sliced blueberries/grapes/or strawberries, small pieces of cheese, some kind of bean and sliced tomatoes would be a good one. Then DD could eat what she wanted. I could cover the tray and put it back in the refrigerator. Don't fix special stuff or keep offering one thing after another, just keep some easy things she likes handy. All picky eaters have different things the want. My DD only wanted tomatoes, cheese, veggie juice and an occasional bean when she was getting her canines in. She had some scary diapers for a few weeks (red poop), but survived just fine. We were still nursing but you can hide things in a fruit smoothie for nutrition. Also she's probably getting more nutrients than you realize. Here's a good site http://www.nutritiondata.com/ . I can't believe how many nutrients are in blackberries http://www.nutritiondata.com/facts/f...-juices/1848/2 .
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#8 of 33 Old 05-21-2010, 10:28 AM
 
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I'd just keep offering whatever your eating... and get out of the habit of giving her what you know she'll eat now - else it'll only get worse, and you'll be stuck in another 6 months or a year making two meals - one for you & DH, and one for DD. And thats no fun! Good luck!!
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#9 of 33 Old 05-21-2010, 11:02 AM
 
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Why are you taking her off formula? I would consider keeping her on some kind of 'formula' (whether that's smoothies or goat's/coconut/hemp milk or commercial formula) until closer to 18mos-2yrs. If you were BF her she wouldn't wean until 2-4yrs+ so IMO part of BLW (whether you're BF or FF) would be continuing breastmilk/formula until they no longer need it. It really takes a lot of the stress off of 'eating' and 'balanced meals' etc. because you KNOW they are still getting all their nutrition. Just a thought.

Anyway, my 15mo DS LOVES fruit above everything else. He will only pick at most of what we offer but you give him fruit and he goes to town. (He does also love beans and a few other foods, but mostly it's fruit). What I've been doing, since he's still mostly BF, is just continue to give him some of whatever we're eating, but we've also started eating more fruit... So I guess kind of a compromise. We give him the 'meal' we're all eating plus a side of fruit (but not an excessive amount, so he still ends up eating some of the meal too). We also give him 1-2 snacks a day that are fruit (other snacks are not fruit).

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#10 of 33 Old 05-21-2010, 01:16 PM
 
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i think fruit should really be more of a small snack/once or twice a day, then a main staple of anyone's diet. its important when kids get older to eat fruits and veggies but i think in our culture we are apt to go for sweets including fruit rather then veggies when lots of veggies have more nutrients per serving then equivalent amounts of fruit. the sugar in fruit provides a quick boost in blood sugar in our bodies, which provides energy, but it isnt a sustaining energy and this blood glucose surge can cause a blood sugar low which results in cravings for more sugary foods, and this sugar crash will be more pronounced if you arent eating protiens and fats with the sugarry foods...

babies especially need to eat fats, even the fat-phobic medical docs agree babies do need fat. its particularly important if baby is not breastfed as breastmilk is very high in fats, including saturated fats. under age two, i personally believe we should provide a lot of healthy organic fats, protiens and whole foods including fruits and vegetables, but the fruits especially should be a smaller part of a babys diet then fat or protien. children will generally eat what is offered at age 1, so if you are always offering fruit, her tatstes are accustomed to that. my daughter is 1.5 and loves meats of all kinds, and enjoys fruits in small portions daily. she isnt big on veggies mostly because she has a hard time chewing them. she loves cheese, eggs with salsa, whole milk plain yogurt (no or extremely small amount of natural sweetener).
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#11 of 33 Old 05-21-2010, 01:58 PM
 
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Honestly, I have to say that given your examples, I'd much rather she eat the fruit... bread, pasta, rice, tortillas - none of them have the nutrients that fruit does.

Yes, she is not getting the balance that she needs. But you say she'll drink milk - honestly instead of milk, I'd be giving her formula until her foods improve, so at least you know she's getting the nutrition she needs.

As for the rest, keep offering her foods in different forms. Beans, cheese, eggs (I'm assuming you're veg, since there's not one example of meat in that list) - make sure that there's plenty of fat added to them, since fat is so crucial at this point.

Until she starts eating a fair bit of protein and fat on her own, I'd keep her on formula. And I'd lay off the starches - they're not necessary, you'd be better off trying to get her to eat veggies and protein sources, at least she'll be getting much-needed nutrients from them. And you won't be trading one problem for another - I can't tell you how many times I've seen moms come on here distressed because their kids will only eat bread, pasta, etc., and won't touch anything else.

ETA - also, at 12 mos she doesn't have the ability to digest grains anyway, so they're nutritionally empty filler.

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#12 of 33 Old 05-21-2010, 04:05 PM
 
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I just read the LLL book My Child Won't Eat! and was surprised by how little a child that age actually needs to eat. Keep in mind that a child's rate of growth significantly decreases in the second year, so her caloric needs are probably less even though she's bigger and more active than a baby.

What that book says is to neutrally offer what you're eating, and if the child wants something else you can have some other easy options - not stuff you have to spend time preparing.

Honestly, I'd be thrilled if my 2.5y/o ate as well as your 1-year-old. He still nurses frequently so I'm not too worried. I agree with other that if you're concerned you could continue with formula to fill in any gaps in her diet, but it sounds to me like she actually eats pretty well.

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#13 of 33 Old 05-21-2010, 05:36 PM
 
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please rethink weaning from formula. i know its expensive, but she needs it for at least another 6 mos, possibly another year.

i dont think a baby wanting mostly sweets is strange, after all, breastmilk if very sweet, so its what they have a taste for. even a formula baby is accustomed to sweet flavor, so all babies really naturally gravitate toward sweet.

but theres a difference between a starburst and a grape. keep offering fruit, but also offer veggies. she'll learn to like them through repeated exposure.

i would continue to use formula as her main source of calories for at least another 6 mos, with just little bits of healthy foods (anything "bread" is not healthy really) maybe 2 or 3x/day.

when you are ready to bump up the solids around 18-24 mos, go for healthy fats (btw, peanut butter is a bad idea at 12 mos, not just for choking but also bc of allergies. if you dont have a complete medical hx, you dont know her risk of peanut and other food allergies, so i would stop peanut products until age 3)

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#14 of 33 Old 05-22-2010, 12:44 AM
 
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please rethink weaning from formula. i know its expensive, but she needs it for at least another 6 mos, possibly another year.

i dont think a baby wanting mostly sweets is strange, after all, breastmilk if very sweet, so its what they have a taste for. even a formula baby is accustomed to sweet flavor, so all babies really naturally gravitate toward sweet.

but theres a difference between a starburst and a grape. keep offering fruit, but also offer veggies. she'll learn to like them through repeated exposure.

i would continue to use formula as her main source of calories for at least another 6 mos, with just little bits of healthy foods (anything "bread" is not healthy really) maybe 2 or 3x/day.

when you are ready to bump up the solids around 18-24 mos, go for healthy fats (btw, peanut butter is a bad idea at 12 mos, not just for choking but also bc of allergies. if you dont have a complete medical hx, you dont know her risk of peanut and other food allergies, so i would stop peanut products until age 3)
ita that formula should continue, but i dont agree about the sweet-fruit-only preferences being exactly "normal" simply based on breastmilk being sweet. breastmilk is also something like 50% fat, and high in protien, so it seems just as likely that babies would develop a taste for fat and protiens.

my daughter literally asks for meat and eggs ("meat" includes seafood) and loves meat and fish. she also likes cheese and almond butter a lot. if i offered fruit all the time, numerous times a day, chances are she'd begin to like fruit more then say, a bite of tuna salad, but i offer mostly protiens, fats and smaller amounts of fruit, and smaller amounts of starches like potatoes, so she likes what is offered.

just because humans crave sweets doesn't make sweet foods always good for us. also as Cristeen said, starches really dont have much nutrients in them compared to other foods. one of the reasons people (babies included) love starches (ie. tortillas) so much is they literally turn into sugar in our bodies almost right away. im not saying never feed yr kid a tortilla but i am saying the main foods a baby needs are fats and protiens, not fruit for every meal.

of course a grape is not quite like feeding candy, but grapes of all fruits are very high sugar, per cup, compared to other fruits such as raspberries. of course fruit has nutrients other then the sugars present natrally, whereas candy doe not, but i do think its prudent to remember that there are high sugar fruits and lower-sugar fruits, and if youre going to eat a great deal of fruit to choose lower-sugar fruits.


heres an example of sugar in natural foods like grapes compared to strawberries=
http://www.sugarstacks.com/fruits.htm

grapes have more then 3times as much sugar per serving, by weight, then strawberries.
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#15 of 33 Old 05-22-2010, 03:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Wow, so many different opinions. A few things to clear up:
1) Her pediatrician instructed us to take her off formula.
2) The "bread, rice, pasta, tortillas" are not processed starch. Her bread is normally 100% whole wheat, soaked, with whey, and with vegetable puree (usually carrot or pumpkin), prune juice, and blackstrap molasses in the dough. It is always served with cheese, raw coconut oil, or a nut butter on it. The pasta is whole wheat with homemade tomato-veggie sauce & parmesan, or homemade cheese sauce, on it. The rice is cooked in tomato juice with tons of vegetables and beans in it. I've never heard that babies can't digest grains--is this a TF idea? I don't follow TF. I'm very happy with how our family eats and I work hard at it.
3) The most current research I've read (and my pediatrician's opinion) states that avoiding so-called allergenic foods (egg white, nut butter, whatever) actually can increase the risk of food allergies later, so we will not be avoiding any foods. There are no food allergies in her family medical history anyway.
4) We are 99% veg, but when we eat meat we offer it. So far she will take small bites of bacon and that's it. Fish makes her cry.
5) Again, we offer a wide variety of healthy foods, including everything that has been listed (eggs, beans, cheese, avocado, yogurt, etc.). I don't just offer her fruit all day long, and never have--I thought that was clear. Even if she's so hungry she's in tears, she will not eat food she doesn't like or that she thinks she doesn't like. If, say, I put beans and cheese in front of her (that's all I mean when I say "trying to get her to eat"--making some food and putting it in front of her), she'll poke at it and maybe place a piece on her tongue, spit it out, and cry because that's not what she wants to eat. She won't cheer up or sleep until I give her either some milk, or some fruit. I do try to do things like put nut butter on the bananas or toss sliced strawberries with raw coconut oil for fats. And she mostly eats low-sugar fruits anyway.

ssh, ammiga, Leah, Faith--thanks, I'm going to try your suggestions.

Gotta go grab a shower, Granny is on the way over

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#16 of 33 Old 05-22-2010, 06:44 PM
 
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1) Her pediatrician instructed us to take her off formula.
But WHY? Is there a specific problem that led to that decision? It seems to be a pattern among mainstream pedis & quite honestly I think it makes no sense. I would still encourage you to consider some form of formula throughout her second year of life (and again, that could be your own 'homemade' formula of various high-fat, nutritious milks or whatever, doesn't necessarily need to be a can)... I just feel babies weren't designed to survive solely on solid foods so young... The WHO recommends babies be BF a minimum of 2 yrs so I would think the same would extend to formula. I won't say any more on that, totally your choice, I just want to bring up one last time that you CAN question your pedi's advice.

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2) The "bread, rice, pasta, tortillas" are not processed starch. Her bread is normally 100% whole wheat, soaked, with whey, and with vegetable puree (usually carrot or pumpkin), prune juice, and blackstrap molasses in the dough. It is always served with cheese, raw coconut oil, or a nut butter on it. The pasta is whole wheat with homemade tomato-veggie sauce & parmesan, or homemade cheese sauce, on it. The rice is cooked in tomato juice with tons of vegetables and beans in it. I've never heard that babies can't digest grains--is this a TF idea? I don't follow TF. I'm very happy with how our family eats and I work hard at it.
I'm with you there, I never heard babies can't digest grains (though I'd be willing to look at some research if anyone has any!) and my DS does eat whole grains.

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3) The most current research I've read (and my pediatrician's opinion) states that avoiding so-called allergenic foods (egg white, nut butter, whatever) actually can increase the risk of food allergies later, so we will not be avoiding any foods. There are no food allergies in her family medical history anyway.
Yup, again, I'm with you, DS eats whatever we eat (including nut butters) and I'm sure you'd have noticed by now if there were allergic reactions to anything anyway!

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5) Again, we offer a wide variety of healthy foods, including everything that has been listed (eggs, beans, cheese, avocado, yogurt, etc.). I don't just offer her fruit all day long, and never have--I thought that was clear. Even if she's so hungry she's in tears, she will not eat food she doesn't like or that she thinks she doesn't like. If, say, I put beans and cheese in front of her (that's all I mean when I say "trying to get her to eat"--making some food and putting it in front of her), she'll poke at it and maybe place a piece on her tongue, spit it out, and cry because that's not what she wants to eat. She won't cheer up or sleep until I give her either some milk, or some fruit. I do try to do things like put nut butter on the bananas or toss sliced strawberries with raw coconut oil for fats. And she mostly eats low-sugar fruits anyway.
I don't think fruit is bad at all & I'm happy for DS to eat fruits in moderation. I simply don't believe nature would create a yummy, readily available food if we weren't meant to eat it. I feel there is a reason that fruits & veggies are easier to gather & prepare than hunting for meat & fish -- the fruits & veggies are meant to be a staple in our diet, & the meat/fish less so. That's just my opinion of course. But I think it sounds like you're doing everything right, just keep offering her lots of variety and opportunity to try new things, and sneak some things in like you've been doing. Maybe start the meal with a small amount of fruit to satisfy her initial hunger, than offer her the other foods, then allow her to finish up with some more fruit if necessary. Most of the toddlers I know LOVE fruit and you don't see too many older kids/adults living on a fruitarian diet. She'll start eating more varied foods in her own time.

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#17 of 33 Old 05-22-2010, 08:15 PM
 
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Wow, so many different opinions. A few things to clear up:
1) Her pediatrician instructed us to take her off formula.
Infant formulas aren't supposed to be given past 12 mo, but even 'mainstream' sources recommend replacing them with cow's milk. Toddlers really do still need milk of some sort.

Is there a reason you don't want to give toddler formula or animal milk?

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3) The most current research I've read (and my pediatrician's opinion) states that avoiding so-called allergenic foods (egg white, nut butter, whatever) actually can increase the risk of food allergies later, so we will not be avoiding any foods.
This is what I understand as well. Nut butters are a superb food. Even a couple of bites smeared on some fruit will give lots of necessary calories, protein, and good fat. Since you say she takes that I would keep offering it regularly if she hasn't eaten any other protein or fat that day.

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4) We are 99% veg, but when we eat meat we offer it. So far she will take small bites of bacon and that's it.
Could you try cooking meat with dried fruit or fruit sauce? The sweet flavor might be more appealing but would simultaneously be getting her more used to the taste of meat. I have a great, easy recipe for stewed chicken with prunes (or dried apricots) - pm me if you want it.

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5) If, say, I put beans and cheese in front of her (that's all I mean when I say "trying to get her to eat"--making some food and putting it in front of her), she'll poke at it and maybe place a piece on her tongue, spit it out, and cry because that's not what she wants to eat. She won't cheer up or sleep until I give her either some milk, or some fruit.
Seriously, I think she is letting you know that she still needs milk of some sort.

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#18 of 33 Old 05-22-2010, 11:24 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Oh, she does get milk 3x per day still, at least. I'm definitely not going to cut it out completely at this point because I agree that it seems like she really needs it. I'm just not really thrilled with the digestibility and nutritional value of pasteurized, conventional milk (raw is not available here, and organic is sadly way out of our budget for the time being), whereas I believe cheese and yogurt are easier to digest I am under the impression that other "milks" (soy, nut, coconut, whatever) aren't nutritionally interchangeable with dairy milks--they're good as repalcements for taste, and in cooking, or whatever, but their nutrient content is vastly different from human or dairy milk. Am I wrong there?

I'm not 100% sure what the reasoning is on not using formula past 12 months, honestly--does anyone know? I know they make toddler formula but I have yet to see any reputable source actually recommend it, and I assumed it was a marketing gimmick, but maybe I'm wrong. I wonder if the nutritional balance that kids need shifts after 12 months, or something? Does breastmilk's makeup shift or change over time as kids grow? Our pediatrician is awesome and totally on board with AP/BLW/etc. (he even suggested I consider adoptive breastfeeding and set me up with an appointment at the breastfeeding clinic--pretty cool), so I'm generally inclined to trust him

She ate quite a variety today--smoothie with berries, banana, nut butter, chia, spinach, soy milk, and maca; bits of raw bar made with hemp hearts, coconut oil, raw cacao, maca, lucuma, a dash of honey, dried apple, etc.; puffed kamut; and a huge bowl of peas mashed with applesauce (plus milk and formula, and some foam from my cappucino, ha) so that was pleasant! She totally rejected the yam fries and french fries we had at lunch (we went out to eat), though, which was amusing.

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#19 of 33 Old 05-22-2010, 11:44 PM
 
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Oh, she does get milk 3x per day still, at least. I'm definitely not going to cut it out completely at this point because I agree that it seems like she really needs it. I'm just not really thrilled with the digestibility and nutritional value of pasteurized, conventional milk (raw is not available here, and organic is sadly way out of our budget for the time being), whereas I believe cheese and yogurt are easier to digest
If she has issues digesting cow's milk would you consider goat's milk? I hear goat's milk lacks the problematic protein of cow's milk, and it's naturally homogeneous so doesn't need to be homogenized if you have a beef with that.

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I am under the impression that other "milks" (soy, nut, coconut, whatever) aren't nutritionally interchangeable with dairy milks--they're good as repalcements for taste, and in cooking, or whatever, but their nutrient content is vastly different from human or dairy milk. Am I wrong there?
That's what I understand as well.

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I'm not 100% sure what the reasoning is on not using formula past 12 months, honestly--does anyone know?
I think it's partly because a toddler needs a different nutrient mix than an infant, and partly because they can have cow's milk after 12 months.

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I know they make toddler formula but I have yet to see any reputable source actually recommend it, and I assumed it was a marketing gimmick
IMO it *is* a marketing gimmick - but that's because, once the child can tolerate it, fresh animal milk is preferable to powdered processed animal milk (IMO). Not because a toddler doesn't need milk at all.

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I wonder if the nutritional balance that kids need shifts after 12 months, or something? Does breastmilk's makeup shift or change over time as kids grow?
Yes, and yes. BM from a mom with a child over a year is not accepted by milk banks because the nutritional composition is too far from what a newborn needs.

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She ate quite a variety today--smoothie with berries, banana, nut butter, chia, spinach, soy milk, and maca; bits of raw bar made with hemp hearts, coconut oil, raw cacao, maca, lucuma, a dash of honey, dried apple, etc.; puffed kamut; and a huge bowl of peas mashed with applesauce (plus milk and formula, and some foam from my cappucino, ha) so that was pleasant! She totally rejected the yam fries and french fries we had at lunch (we went out to eat), though, which was amusing.
Yay!

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#20 of 33 Old 05-23-2010, 01:50 PM
 
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I am under the impression that other "milks" (soy, nut, coconut, whatever) aren't nutritionally interchangeable with dairy milks--they're good as repalcements for taste, and in cooking, or whatever, but their nutrient content is vastly different from human or dairy milk. Am I wrong there?
Well cow's milk isn't really close to human milk... I would consider goat's milk. I think soy or nut milk wouldn't quite meet her nutritional needs but hemp & coconut milk could be very good sources of fat, protein, amino acids, etc. in addition to or combined with goat's milk (but neither has the cholesterol she would need). If you are interested, there is a nice chart here that could be a starting point for you to compare nutritional values... http://www.westonaprice.org/Recipes-...ula.html#chart (I know you don't follow TF, neither do I, but the chart still is useful for the breast milk data ) Maybe you could come up with a combo of various milks that is most similar to breast milk and affordable for you. I'm sure there must be threads about this somewhere on here.

The reason I would suggest milks vs. yogurt, cheese, etc. is basically to have a more consistent & reliable source of nutrients as well as avoid depending too much on cow's milk which I personally feel is inadequate. Here's a good article comparing breast milk to cow's milk: http://www.greenourkids.com/natural-...ink-cows-milk/ (scroll about 1/3 down for nutritional info).

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#21 of 33 Old 05-25-2010, 02:06 PM
 
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BLB, I think our babies could be almost food preference twins (I have a 17 month old little guy)

I also have a 7 year old, who did not do that same thing of holding out for raisins/grapes/strawberries/what have you. And both were offered from day one a healthy range of nutrient-dense foods--the difference is that the now 7 year old actually ate them (in teeny tiny quantities), rather than making faces and refusing to eat, becoming hungry and cranky and gesticulating wildly for the sweeter options that the toddler knows exist somewhere! My little guy is aware of sweets even though he's never had them (really, never seen them--when we were at a friend's house he was clamoring for a brownie when he had never seen one before, or anything brownie-like baked in a 9 x 13 pan). Our daughter never did that, and happily handed over chocolates from an advent calendar at age 2.75, completely oblivious.

Both my kids have the same body type at this toddler age (50-60 percentile for height, less than 5th percentile for weight). Both rejected fat-rich things like avocadoes, egg yolks, nut butters... Both love to nurse. To me it's so clear that otherwise it's a taste preference/personality thing that's different between them, and I wish there was a magic bullet for the toddler to choose to eat the healthy and tasty meal choices!

My new breakthrough food with the little guy is hummus. He also likes guacamole (though not plain avocadoes). And chicken sometimes. It's all so hit or miss, and varies by the day. I think offering her what you eat, and then later offering a banana, peanut butter and milk if she's still hungry is a fine way to go. I would try not to fret too much and think that she'll always eat that way--there's a lot of growth and learning in this department in her future, and though sweet things may not be your preference to feed her, making them as nutrient-rich as possible will keep her healthy.

Good luck!



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Wow, so many different opinions. A few things to clear up:

5) Again, we offer a wide variety of healthy foods, including everything that has been listed (eggs, beans, cheese, avocado, yogurt, etc.). I don't just offer her fruit all day long, and never have--I thought that was clear. Even if she's so hungry she's in tears, she will not eat food she doesn't like or that she thinks she doesn't like. If, say, I put beans and cheese in front of her (that's all I mean when I say "trying to get her to eat"--making some food and putting it in front of her), she'll poke at it and maybe place a piece on her tongue, spit it out, and cry because that's not what she wants to eat. She won't cheer up or sleep until I give her either some milk, or some fruit. I do try to do things like put nut butter on the bananas or toss sliced strawberries with raw coconut oil for fats. And she mostly eats low-sugar fruits anyway.

ssh, ammiga, Leah, Faith--thanks, I'm going to try your suggestions.

Gotta go grab a shower, Granny is on the way over
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#22 of 33 Old 05-27-2010, 01:44 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks so much for the thoughts, everyone! simcon, our kids do sound like food twins I've been chilling out on this in general and I think we'll all survive For the last 2 days I made her a grilled cheese on thin slices of whole grain bread, with a tiny bit of chutney spread on it, and she ate some of that. Last night she rejected white rice but ate a few green beans IN RED THAI CURRY SAUCE. She has no trouble with strong flavours!

crunchy_mommy--I've seen that Weston Price chart before! I actually considered making our own formula using their recipe initally, but it wasn't feasible for a number of reasons.

I'd always understood that cow's milk and breast milk are not at all the same--I'm pretty sure it's only really recommended so strongly for toddlers 1) because of dairy industry lobbying and 2) as a source of calcium (which cheese, yogurt, greens, etc. are just as good at providing), not as a breast milk substitute. Formula is much more nutrient-dense than plain cow's milk because it's uber-fortified, and it's also partially pre-digested, hence why some kids can tolerate dairy formula but not cow's milk.

That said, I don't really agree with direct parallels between breast milk and formula (ie that since it's great to breastfeed to at least 2 years, it's also good to stay on formula that long). Formula is an extremely processed "food" with all kinds of gross stuff in it (hydrogenated oils, chemicals, and in particular, hormones and antibiotics in the source milk, since as far as I can tell all formula sold here in Canada is made from American milk, not Canadian, which by law can't have hormones in it and I think it can't have antibiotics either but I could be wrong there). Plenty of babies do do fine without breastmilk or formula after 1 year, and I guess since breast milk isn't available, I feel like it's healthier for her to be off the incredibly processed cocktail of formula and onto healthy whole foods instead, since formula isn't necessary anymore. Does that make sense? It does in my head but I haven't finished my morning coffee yet, so...

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BLB, I think our babies could be almost food preference twins (I have a 17 month old little guy)

I also have a 7 year old, who did not do that same thing of holding out for raisins/grapes/strawberries/what have you. And both were offered from day one a healthy range of nutrient-dense foods--the difference is that the now 7 year old actually ate them (in teeny tiny quantities), rather than making faces and refusing to eat, becoming hungry and cranky and gesticulating wildly for the sweeter options that the toddler knows exist somewhere! My little guy is aware of sweets even though he's never had them (really, never seen them--when we were at a friend's house he was clamoring for a brownie when he had never seen one before, or anything brownie-like baked in a 9 x 13 pan). Our daughter never did that, and happily handed over chocolates from an advent calendar at age 2.75, completely oblivious.

Both my kids have the same body type at this toddler age (50-60 percentile for height, less than 5th percentile for weight). Both rejected fat-rich things like avocadoes, egg yolks, nut butters... Both love to nurse. To me it's so clear that otherwise it's a taste preference/personality thing that's different between them, and I wish there was a magic bullet for the toddler to choose to eat the healthy and tasty meal choices!

My new breakthrough food with the little guy is hummus. He also likes guacamole (though not plain avocadoes). And chicken sometimes. It's all so hit or miss, and varies by the day. I think offering her what you eat, and then later offering a banana, peanut butter and milk if she's still hungry is a fine way to go. I would try not to fret too much and think that she'll always eat that way--there's a lot of growth and learning in this department in her future, and though sweet things may not be your preference to feed her, making them as nutrient-rich as possible will keep her healthy.

Good luck!

Astrea, mama to my sweet toddler Willow
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#23 of 33 Old 05-27-2010, 02:16 PM
 
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Totally makes sense. If making your own formula isn't feasible & she's eating enough solids then why keep her on processed-chemical formula?? I totally get it The grilled cheese with chutney is a brilliant idea BTW! Oh and DS also lovessss spicy foods (tabasco sauce, jalapeno "cheeze" sauce, chili, curries, etc.) hehe

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#24 of 33 Old 05-27-2010, 04:21 PM
 
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Plenty of babies do do fine without breastmilk or formula after 1 year, and I guess since breast milk isn't available, I feel like it's healthier for her to be off the incredibly processed cocktail of formula and onto healthy whole foods instead, since formula isn't necessary anymore.
That makes sense to me too. But since your original issue seemed to be that your DD would only eat fruit or milk, my feeling was that the best way to get fat and protein into her diet would be to continue with the milk (of whatever type - I only suggested the toddler formula because you seemed opposed to cow's milk so I thought you meant your DD couldn't tolerate it).

It's true that animal milk doesn't have exactly the same nutritional composition as human milk and obviously doesn't offer the immunological benefits, but it is a good source of fat, protein, and calories (as well as calcium if you're worried about that).

Anyway from your update it sounds like she's doing a little better with the dietary diversity so maybe it's not a cause for concern.

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#25 of 33 Old 05-29-2010, 03:02 AM
 
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I'd offer a lot of fruit but also a lot of other things. I wouldn't fret if she mostly eats fruit, though. My son's eating habits were exactly like that as a toddler (except he wouldn't eat anything at all until 20 months old or so), & he eats pretty well now at almost 3. He even loves meat now, which I thought would never happen.
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#26 of 33 Old 05-29-2010, 11:07 PM
 
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She's still a baby. With all of my kids, there were days at 12 months old when all they would eat was bananas. I would have been thrilled if they had let me put peanut butter on them. None of them are picky eaters now.

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#27 of 33 Old 05-30-2010, 01:17 PM
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At 12 months, I offered what we were eating. If she didn't eat it, I nursed her. I didn't "try" to get her to eat something. So, if we were enjoying fruit, so did my kids. If we weren't, they they didn't either. Breastmilk was still the primary source of calories for my kids at that time--I labeled the rest "food exploration" and didn't count on any of it towards their nutritional goals.

ETA: Whoops, I thought your phrase about "baby led weaning" was referring to breastmilk. Sorry. I didn't know that you had been ff and the ped told you to stop that part. I thought she was still getting bm (or formula).

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#28 of 33 Old 06-01-2010, 03:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I've decided to give her soy milk as a source of calories, fat, calcium, protein and so on (we get Silk, which is organic, sustainably produced, etc.)--I do feel like she needs something to help supplement her solids intake once this last can of formula runs out. She seems to really like it and to tolerate it just fine, and it's much more in line with my food and health values than cow's milk. We'll see how that goes in the long term but so far, so good...

I am seriously thinking about giving her a multivitamin of some sort, though, just to be safe. Does anyone know of a good food-source vitamin or supplement that's OK for toddlers (and hopefully not killer expensive)? I'm also wondering about AHA/DHA/Omega fats supplementation.

She woke up yesterday crying and signing desperately for banana and saying "nananananana"--I think I know what her first word's doing to be

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#29 of 33 Old 06-11-2010, 04:57 AM
 
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I've decided to give her soy milk as a source of calories, fat, calcium, protein and so on (we get Silk, which is organic, sustainably produced, etc.)--I do feel like she needs something to help supplement her solids intake once this last can of formula runs out. She seems to really like it and to tolerate it just fine, and it's much more in line with my food and health values than cow's milk. We'll see how that goes in the long term but so far, so good...

I am seriously thinking about giving her a multivitamin of some sort, though, just to be safe. Does anyone know of a good food-source vitamin or supplement that's OK for toddlers (and hopefully not killer expensive)? I'm also wondering about AHA/DHA/Omega fats supplementation.

She woke up yesterday crying and signing desperately for banana and saying "nananananana"--I think I know what her first word's doing to be
I was just reading the "Cure for Tooth Decay" and the author purports that children crave fruits b/c they really want fat/protein.

I've been wondering about this b/c DD is always wanting fruit. She will eat it like crazy. She has some normal toddler pickiness combined with a dairy allergy and food sensitivities to wheat and probably corn. We've been working through rashes and malaise and it's getting hard to figure out exactly what to feed her.

I think fruit is wonderful. But in some cases, such as mine and possibly yours, I wonder if it points to other issues.

P.S if you're wondering about a supplement and your DD can chew, check out Animal Parade. DD loves them.

Mama to expecting Babe 2
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#30 of 33 Old 06-12-2010, 03:15 PM
 
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I was just reading the "Cure for Tooth Decay" and the author purports that children crave fruits b/c they really want fat/protein.

I've been wondering about this b/c DD is always wanting fruit. She will eat it like crazy. She has some normal toddler pickiness combined with a dairy allergy and food sensitivities to wheat and probably corn. We've been working through rashes and malaise and it's getting hard to figure out exactly what to feed her.

I think fruit is wonderful. But in some cases, such as mine and possibly yours, I wonder if it points to other issues.

P.S if you're wondering about a supplement and your DD can chew, check out Animal Parade. DD loves them.

fruit isnt bad, but it is high in sugars, and the author of cure tooth decay advocates a lower sugar eating plan (yes, even natural sugars in fruit), with plenty of good fats and protien. often sugar cravings are a need for energy/calories, which can be a more sustained energy that lasts longer if eating protien and fat rather then mostly sugar (a banana is by weight mostly water and carbs/sugar, very little protien and fat).
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