I...have...HAD IT!!! with DD's food issues. - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
Old 08-03-2010, 02:51 PM - Thread Starter
 
seashells's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 647
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
DD is just about 5 years old. She's a peanut and has been around the 3rd percentile of the growth chart for years.

Some good things we do:
- We NEVER make her eat anything. We don't bribe. We don't cajole. The closest thing we do is sometimes make a game out of eating if she's reluctant (like pretending the food is screaming for mercy... lol, sounds awful but it's funny and it can work) but even that is not coercive. She chooses to go along with it, she'll open her mouth for the screaming food if she wants. No, we don't scream the food often, maybe once a week.

- We present her food and she decides what she wants off the table and how much she wants. We never make her clean her plate or eat something she doesn't want.

BUT. Obviously we screwed up majorly along the way somewhere.

- She loves cereal. She would live on cereal, night and day, if she could. I personally think cereal is about as valuable to the body as a sock on the ear, but my DH worries about her calorie intake and keeps boxes and boxes of cereal around.

- She had a handful of decent foods that she used to like, and one by one they drop off. Take rice and beans, I make a very rich, cheesy, eggy rice and beans dish, it's delicious and has a decent amount of protein for an otherwise carbohydrate-addicted child. But suddenly she stopped liking it. Ditto the pasta and veggies with a cream sauce dish she used to love. Ditto eggs. And so on.

The thing that is driving me absolutely bonkers right now is that she will REQUEST a certain food (either out of the blue, or maybe for dinner I'll say "would you like X or Y" and she'll show enthusiasm for one or the other if I'm lucky). And then she will Not. Eat. A. Bite.

I admit I get really pissy about this. I'm not complaining about her not cleaning her plate. I'm complaining about her deciding she would like to snack on an orange, having an orange peeled for her, and then having to throw the perfectly good orange in the GARBAGE (or eat it myself, though I am 30 pounds overweight and certainly don't need to add the job role of "family dog licking plates" to my duties).

I recently estimated we throw away $40 a week, 40% of our food budget, away. Because of DD.

Yes, this is our fault and not DD's. I understand this. I DON'T, however, understand how we got here and what to do about it. I do understand food waste is a fact of raising kids, but not to this degree.

Some refused foods I will put in the fridge and say that when she's hungry she can eat it. And the next meal is just that food and tough luck if she doesn't feel like it then. Either she's hungry and she'll eat the food, or she's not hungry. This tactic has been a dismal failure thus far.

Other foods it's not really realistic to do that - like oatmeal with berries (this is what she got excited about for breakfast yesterday, I made it for her, and she sniffed it and said it was too hot, she went off to play to let it cool down, I called her back after a few minutes and told her it was cool enough, she sniffed and said she didn't want it. ARGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!). Oatmeal is just going to get all nasty mushy in the fridge.

We have long since been asking her "are you SURE?" Like, she'll want an egg. "OK, are you SURE? Because I will be boiling this egg special for you." "YES, I really want an egg!!" "So you're going to actually eat it, right?" "Yes, yummy!" "Here's your egg." "I don't want it."

I've told her "You know, we don't believe you anymore when you say you want a food. What should we do? How can we believe you if you say you want a food?" But she doesn't really understand.

So here's what I'm thinking, what do you think?

- Goodbye cereal. No more cereal. She doesn't get to rely on cereal as a backup. I have to get my DH on board with this because he is scared to death that she'll actually starve to death, and feels that feeding her crappy cereal is better than nothing. But my hope is that if cereal is not an option, she might actually eat, you know, food.

- I would still like to give her choices for dinner. I don't just say "what do you want for dinner" - I know that's absurd. But I like to say "would you like rice and beans or pasta with brocolli?" But maybe I should not ask her for her input at all, EVER.

- I am also thinking maybe her bedtime snack should be slowly rescinded. She needs to eat during the day. Right now she will just not eat and then her dad will take her downstairs before bed and feed her cereal. She should have dinner and that's it, that's best for the body. It's like she's just holding out. DH does it because he's concerned, I know why. But I feel like the status quo is not acceptable, and we need to change it.

- And I need to stop being angry about it, but it's so hard. I am honestly angry about it. I really am. If we didn't waste $40 a week on food going straight into the garbage, we could eat more meat. We could eat better food. Maybe I could even eventually afford dental care for myself. Children everywhere eat the food they get, and they are damn grateful for it to boot. I was a picky eater but I never behaved like this. I'd avoid eating the veggies on my plate but I'd make do with the rest - the roll of bread, the applesauce, I'd pick at the pork chops I didn't like but, hey, I was hungry. Ditto my husband. I don't know where we went wrong to teach her so much disrespect of food and resources when DH and I value them very much.
seashells is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 08-03-2010, 04:15 PM
 
BethLS's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Lansing, MI
Posts: 121
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Seashells,

I couldn't read and not post! Though, Im afraid I don't have much, if anything, to say that could help you.

Although my oldest is "picky" (and small too! She was a 2 pounder at birth and she's a skilly little welp!) we're certainly not in your boat at all. Im so sorry you have to go through this!

I agree that 40$ a week is a lot of food waste that could otherwise be spent on other, high quality foods. Thats a ton of food/money in a years time!

Have you tried having her help you find and prepare her food?

Good luck! Maybe some other MDC'ers can be of more help!
BethLS is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 04:49 PM
 
wednesday2004's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 750
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
This probably isn't going to help you much and I have a child with food issues also.
I'll tell you about my mom quick. When she was a child she had food issues and she was born shortly after the depression ended and her family was poor to start with. There were just some foods she would not eat, no way, no how. She would go literally 3 days without eating if there was no choice but those particular foods, at that point her mom would give in. I 100% believe she would of starved herself before eating them. She still will not touch them these days.

When my youngest started showing his food issues I decided that was a battle I wasn't going to even get into. As long as he eats things from each food group and he gets enough calories, I call it good. Yes, I really would like it if he'd try new things and eat more of a variety of foods and it would make it easier for supper, but after hearing all my life from my moms perspective, I'm just going to let him include things at his own pace. I always have one thing on his plate that he will eat and I include things I'd like him to eat. Those usually end up thrown out so it's a v-e-r-y small serving. on the odd occasion he actually eats them, then I give him more.
As far as not eating what she already told you she would, is it possible to have her help make it, that might increase the odds of her eating it.
All that said, there are some dry cereals that really aren't that bad. There is a difference between raisin bran and cocoa puffs. Would she let you at least add fruit.
wednesday2004 is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 05:02 PM - Thread Starter
 
seashells's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 647
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
She definitely is my cook's assistant, though not for everything. I'm not comfortable with her handling the stove at all yet, not even just to pour something into boiling water. She's still 4. But she does a lot of other stuff with me, measuring rice and pouring it in (I put the rice in cold water to start with). Also baking is something she does well with me, but the results of baking aren't exactly what I'm trying to increase her intake of :P Like pies and cobblers and stuff.

Being involved with food does pique her interest but it doesn't always go too far. I'm VERY interested in food issues, and my diet is almost exclusively from the farm (but her diet is pretty much from the grocery store). We go to farms all the time, at least every week if not more. We pick stuff. The child does not eat vegetables but I can count on her eating about 40 peas the day the sugar snap peas are ready for harvest. (Though she would never DREAM of eating them with dinner - only on the field).

We have a garden. She has plants of her very own. There's 3 heads of brocolli that belong entirely to her. I'm sure she'll eat them (she only eats them with pasta but I can live with that) but then again I'm not certain anymore, since the last time we had brocolli she refused to eat it and said she didn't like it anymore.

She doesn't like eggs anymore. I feel a whole lot better when I can get an egg or two into her each week. But she does not like them anymore, at all, in any preparation (even devilled).

She does not like meat much, but a year ago we discovered she liked hamburgers if they are drowned in ketchup. Fine. We eat local, grassfed meat. (Like I said, nutrition and food are big interests of mine, so it's that much more frustrating to me to have a Kellogg's addict). For July 4 I watched her eat two entire hamburgers and I was over the moon. Some protein in her, finally! I told DH, maybe we should not have them TOO often, maybe she gets tired of food. So we hae burgers about every other week. Last time (3 days ago) she barely touched hers. I know what's coming next time we make them. "I don't like hamburgers."

She used to like french fries that I baked. I'll bake them in bacon fat or beef fat (or just olive oil, if that's all I've got around). I put some salt on them. She can have whatever ketchup she wants, I don't care. So potato season just started, and I baked some fries. You got it. "No thanks." FRENCH FRIES. Come on, guys, what child does not like french fries? And mine are not like health store french fries, they are dripping in yummy fat. These are world class fries.

I could go on and on. And apparently I have, sorry, I guess I write really long posts. I'm tempted by taking a really strict line - but of course I don't want to cause further problems. The last thing I want is to raise a kid with food issues.
seashells is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 05:03 PM
 
SollysMom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Syracuse, NY
Posts: 598
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My older son (almost 3) is also incredibly picky and doesn't eat much. Luckily he still nurses so I don't really worry, but I know one day he won't nurse anymore and I will try to continue not worrying.

I recently read a LLL book called My Child Won't EAT! and it was pretty helpful. Not in getting him to eat more, just in adjusting my expectations. Kids really don't need very many calories and they're very unlikely to starve themselves. The author's advice would be to give her LESS than you think she can eat and let her ask for more if she wants it. And, to keep food you know she likes on hand as an option but only if it's easy/convenient, not to make a separate meal. So, if you're having pasta and you think she can eat 5 noodles, give her 3 to start. Not 3 spoonfuls, 3 noodles. If she doesn't eat them (or if she does and doesn't ask for more) you can offer some of whatever side dish you're having and repeat the process. If you have a healthy cereal on hand or some cheese or yogurt or whatever else you know she likes that is easy, she can know she can always ask for that if she wants it. My husband also had food issues growing up so it's very important to him that we don't try to force DS1 to try/eat things if he doesn't want to. I keep offering without any judgement/reward/gameplaying, and once in a blue moon he'll surprise me and accept something.

As far as the food waste issue, if I were in your shoes I'd probably do two things... (1) feed her BEFORE you eat (for snacks at least), and only things that you like too, so you won't have a problem eating what she doesn't finish, and (2) make her smaller portions. If she asks for oatmeal, maybe just make 1/4 cup of oatmeal (or less) instead of a full serving size.

Faith, wife to Ben 9/24/05     Tandem nursing and cosleeping graduate (for now!), babywearing SAHM to Solomon 9/18/07 and Abram 12/10/09, expecting our 3rd boy in December/January!
Master Babywearing Educator and President of Babywearing International of Central New York
SollysMom is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 05:07 PM
ssh
 
ssh's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 1,681
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by seashells View Post
Yes, this is our fault and not DD's. I understand this. I DON'T, however, understand how we got here and what to do about it. I do understand food waste is a fact of raising kids, but not to this degree.


- I am also thinking maybe her bedtime snack should be slowly rescinded. She needs to eat during the day. Right now she will just not eat and then her dad will take her downstairs before bed and feed her cereal. She should have dinner and that's it, that's best for the body. It's like she's just holding out. DH does it because he's concerned, I know why. But I feel like the status quo is not acceptable, and we need to change it.
Maybe your DDs pickiness about food isn't your fault. Maybe you didn't do anything wrong and she's just picky.

I would stop fixing her snacks that can't be used if she doesn't want it. For example fix her oatmeal if you haven't eaten and might would want it or save the boiled egg for egg salad or tuna. If you feel she's 'holding out' then there's still a conflict going on about food, even if it's a beneath the surface conflict. Feeling pressure to eat could be making her resistant to eating, depending on the whys of her pickiness. Food can be an issue where kids assert control over their self and any kind of pressure can make it worse.

I wouldn't cut out a bedtime snack. Most kids need one to sleep well and some adults need one to keep their blood sugar stable during the night. When you say cereal, what specific types of cereal are you talking about. Some cereals are high fiber, high protein or low sugar and some are worse nutritionally than a candy bar. The problem is you may not want to take away the few things your DD will eat. It could be easier to just supplement and stop worrying about what she eats. Have you tried counseling or any type of assessment to see if there is an underlying problem?
ssh is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 05:19 PM - Thread Starter
 
seashells's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 647
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by wednesday2004 View Post
This probably isn't going to help you much and I have a child with food issues also.
I'll tell you about my mom quick. When she was a child she had food issues and she was born shortly after the depression ended and her family was poor to start with. There were just some foods she would not eat, no way, no how. She would go literally 3 days without eating if there was no choice but those particular foods, at that point her mom would give in. I 100% believe she would of starved herself before eating them. She still will not touch them these days.
Wow, I had actually wondered if there were any kids like that. It seems to me that picky eaters are a product of privilege. But maybe there are some real exceptions to that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wednesday2004 View Post
When my youngest started showing his food issues I decided that was a battle I wasn't going to even get into. As long as he eats things from each food group and he gets enough calories, I call it good.
Yeah, I'd call that good too but we haven't acheived that. She's 32 pounds (and 5 in a few weeks). How we've avoided the FTT label is probably just a miracle, thought partly because we haven't, well, taken her to a doctor in a few years.

She does not eat from each food group unless you count "the cereal group" and "the frozen pizza group" as the food pyramid. The few foods outside of these "groups" are diminishing so rapidly that the only thing I can think of that she'll eat now besides those are fruit and bean burritos. Those are fine, I think, but I think there's a very good chance bean burritos are going to disappear from DD's menu of choice very soon. (She'll probably keep liking fruit though).

Again, I am talking about a child who LIVES on Kellogg's cereal and frozen Elio's pizza. At this point we've gone beyond picky. This is in "ridiculous" territory.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wednesday2004 View Post
Yes, I really would like it if he'd try new things and eat more of a variety of foods and it would make it easier for supper, but after hearing all my life from my moms perspective, I'm just going to let him include things at his own pace. I always have one thing on his plate that he will eat and I include things I'd like him to eat. Those usually end up thrown out so it's a v-e-r-y small serving. on the odd occasion he actually eats them, then I give him more.
Again, what I worry about is not that she won't try new foods. But she is refusing all her old foods and now lives on a diet that makes me wonder if she is special needs of some sort. It reminds me of that Mary McCracken book where the boy ate nothing but chocolate milk and crackers. Literally. Nothing. Else. And did he have issues? Oh, yes he did.

I cannot put "one" thing on her plate that she'll eat anymore. I used to. Olives and feta cheese maybe. She doesn't eat those anymore. Apples spread with peanut butter. She won't eat those anymore. Not a nibble. Flat out will. not. eat.

I don't know if I'm making it clear enough, I'm not trying to get her on a world class diet. I would be taking her to a doctor if I trusted any. (I have found them to be worse than useless over the last 5 years). We need intervention!

Quote:
Originally Posted by wednesday2004 View Post
As far as not eating what she already told you she would, is it possible to have her help make it, that might increase the odds of her eating it.
I have tried, these days it increases the odds of her sniffing the food before refusing it, as opposed to outright refusing it. I have had times I've wanted to throw the food on the wall because she'd be so excited about making whatever - oatmeal with berries we picked - and she'd pour it in and pick out the berries and ask if it's ready yet. And then she'll say it's too hot. And then a few minutes later she'll say she doesn't want it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wednesday2004 View Post
All that said, there are some dry cereals that really aren't that bad. There is a difference between raisin bran and cocoa puffs. Would she let you at least add fruit.
I don't think there's much difference between raisin bran and cocoa puffs, no. Post Raisin bran is 30.4% sugar by dry weight. Cocoa Puffs is 33.3% sugar. (Source: http://www.karlloren.com/diet/p35.htm). And that's just the sugar part... the vitamins and minerals are denuded and not accessible to the body. It's better than full-on starving, I'll give you that. And I wouldn't even whine that much about it if it were just breakfast, but this is my child's DIET. Cardboard with 1/3 sugar by weight, basically. She's a growing child, she needs FOOD, with real vitamins and minerals and protein to help her grow and function. Sorry, after reading Nutrition and Physical Degeneration, I just can't be convinced that a diet of cereal is acceptable.
seashells is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 05:31 PM - Thread Starter
 
seashells's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 647
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I think offering her TINY portions might be helpful, thanks for the idea. I'll try that.

DH tends to give her portions that HE would eat, which drives me nuts. Honestly, the food waste is mostly on DH. He'll pour her a bowl of cereal in a giant pasta bowl. And he'll fill it. So after she eats her 3 or 5 bites, the right goes right down the garbage disposal. It drives me so nuts, and I make some comments but I can't make too many or he'll get mad (he does not do criticism well at. all. this being his main or sole "issue"). But he doesn't remember next time, and will just FILL a bowl. ARGH!!! Bonking my head on a brick wall smiley please!!

Maybe the main problem is that DH is more in charge of feeding her than I am, since he's her primary caregiver. I cook. He just reaches for cereal. I put a list of ideas on the fridge with easy to assemble stuff (like PB&Js, stuff like that). Oh, and he is physically incapable of making her a half PB&J though we'd all fall over dead if she ever ate a whole one. So he'll make a whole one and she'll eat 3 bites and in the trash it goes.

I'm sorry I'm going on and on but I have no-one to talk to about this, and I can't talk to my husband about it.
seashells is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 05:36 PM
 
mama2mygirl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 1,858
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I think what I would do--and my girls are both small, dd2 is in the 5th percentile and dd1 was always in the 10th and just now is catching up to her peers--is make food that I like and let my dd decide what to eat out of that. I'd get rid of the cereal.
I don't think you did something "wrong" but I do think that it sounds like way too much of your life is centered on what your dd would like to eat.
If nothing else, you could try this for a month. She's not going to starve in a month.

:Mama to 2 :
mama2mygirl is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 05:44 PM
 
Caneel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Small town in a rural area
Posts: 3,835
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
No advice but I can totally relate to your DH frustration with the offering of less than desirable foods under fear of starvation and the giant portion thing.

DS doesn't have food issues (well, not yet) and both of those things happen in our house. My DH will totally freak out and offer DS anything if DS doesn't eat what DH thinks is a life-sustaining amount. (DH thinks a 5 yo can eat 2 cups of cooked pasta and a 6 inch piece of sausage for dinner)

Mom to DS, born fall 05 after ,,, wife/best friend to DH We have
Caneel is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 06:02 PM
 
GoBecGo's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 3,405
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I wouldn't worry so much about it.

I was an INCREDIBLY picky child. I did not gain one pound between age 2 and age 4. But it was nothing my parents had done and i eventually grew out of it.

Cook meals, for everyone, and let her join in or not. Cook something you think she'll eat at least once a day, otherwise just cook what YOU want to eat. Have her sit at the table with some food in front of her during mealtimes, but don't cajole or ask her to eat, just insist she stays for the meal. When everyone is finished eating (or not eating) let her get down. Make mealtimes about reconnecting as a family, rather than food.

You cannot MAKE her eat, or even make her want to eat and that isn't your job. It is your job to provide nutritious food, it is HER job/decision to eat it. Imagine you were trying to control her urine output - crazy, right? But her food intake is part of the same thing. My parents tried EVERYTHING to get me to eat. Nothing worked. What can i say? I was never that hungry, i didn't have "time" to stop playing and eat, food didn't taste all that good to me, and i wasn't too keen on the parental hype surrounding the whole issue. By the time i was a teen i was eating more normally, by the time i was 20 i was overweight! I LOVE food now, LOVE it, but i had to develop that relationship myself. They couldn't fall in love with food FOR me.

Your DH issue is something else - i wouldn't eat dinner either, if it meant i got special time out with daddy and cereal later on....
GoBecGo is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 06:05 PM
 
wednesday2004's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 750
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Would it help if your DH heard from a different source; doctor, nutritionist, etc. on what an appropriate food portion for a child that age is. Maybe he thinks you picking on him when you're telling him this (I don't know him but I do know some people do think that when it's from their spouse). It may help eliminate food waste from one of your concerns.
If it's just him being forgetful maybe find something to print out that uses objects or numbers to show portion size; mashed potatoes = one golf ball size, peas = 15 peas. Maybe it's intimidating to your dd to have all that food piled in front of her and it overwhelms her sometimes. Tiny little offerings may look more doable to her. You can always have more of the same food on 'stand by' if she suddenly decides she likes it and wants more.
wednesday2004 is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 06:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
seashells's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 647
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by mama2mygirl View Post
I do think that it sounds like way too much of your life is centered on what your dd would like to eat.
I'm really amazed at the number of people on the Nutrition forum who think a diet of 85% Kellogg's cereal and 15% Elio's frozen pizza is an acceptable diet, and that my concern about it is the only problem.

Many reponses seem to assume, despite all that I've written to the contrary, that DD is generally eating from all food groups and that I'm just cranky because she didn't eat all her green beans. Or that I think she should clear her plate.

She eats nothing but cereal and the occasional bit of the poorest quality pizza you can buy.

I am really honestly stunned by this attitude. It's like telling a parent of a child with a major heart disease and experiencing problems with it that "way too much of your life is centered on your child's disease." Not only that, it's like THE SPECIAL NEEDS board telling a parent that. Since here I am supposedly writing on a forum filled with people interested in nutrition. Yet here you guys are, telling me that my child's diet is fiiiiiine and I need to take a chill pill, because we all know that Kellogg's Corn Flakes alone will feed a growing child optimally.

The irony strikes me that probably most of you guys are pro-breastfeeding because of all the benefits. But I guess the minute the kid is weaned, Kellogg's is all your child needs for a strong body and mind.
seashells is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 06:14 PM
 
Mama2Xander's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 869
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by seashells View Post
I'm really amazed at the number of people on the Nutrition forum who think a diet of 85% Kellogg's cereal and 15% Elio's frozen pizza is an acceptable diet, and that my concern about it is the only problem.

Many reponses seem to assume, despite all that I've written to the contrary, that DD is generally eating from all food groups and that I'm just cranky because she didn't eat all her green beans. Or that I think she should clear her plate.

She eats nothing but cereal and the occasional bit of the poorest quality pizza you can buy.

I am really honestly stunned by this attitude. It's like telling a parent of a child with a major heart disease and experiencing problems with it that "way too much of your life is centered on your child's disease." Not only that, it's like THE SPECIAL NEEDS board telling a parent that. Since here I am supposedly writing on a forum filled with people interested in nutrition. Yet here you guys are, telling me that my child's diet is fiiiiiine and I need to take a chill pill, because we all know that Kellogg's Corn Flakes alone will feed a growing child optimally.

The irony strikes me that probably most of you guys are pro-breastfeeding because of all the benefits. But I guess the minute the kid is weaned, Kellogg's is all your child needs for a strong body and mind.
I get it, OP... I have a few thoughts/ideas for you but I will have to come back later to post (kids are freaking out).
Mama2Xander is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 06:30 PM
 
Mosaic's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: La vida loca
Posts: 3,953
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Nak...

My DD has nursing issues, so my new best friend is a pediatric dysphagia specialist. And through her, I've learned that picky eating is a much more complicated issue than I had previously thought.

This is from her website. Basically, if you feel you're doing everything "right" and still have problems, an expert can help you find therapies to help her accept new textures, etc. I'm not saying that your DD has a problem that's more than youthful stubbornness or a love of pizza; I'm not qualified to say either way. But I did want to throw it out there that pickiness really can lead to more serious problems down the road, and that there are experts out there that can help.

Mi vida loca: full-time WOHM, frugalista, foodie wannabe, 10+ years of TCOYF 

 

R-E-S-P-E-C-T spells BRAND NEW User Agreement!!

Mosaic is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 06:39 PM
 
seagull's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 66
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I am with you that there is no difference between Raisin Bran and Coco Puffs, but there are better choices for packaged cereal. We only use plain cheerios. If your dd is eating bowls of the sugar stuff, no wonder she isn't in the mood for other food. It must be so frustrating to try to cook for your family. I guess if it was my child, I would find a doctor to run an allergy panel. What if your child has an allergy or intolerance to milk for example, that is mild enough to not show obvious symptoms but would make the child not feel like eating more food. Is your child really active? I know that my "picky eater" will eat anything in sight after swimming. So that is when I load up raw veggies in the cooler.
Good luck.
seagull is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 06:42 PM
 
madskye's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 2,183
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I'd be totally concerned too and it would not be acceptable to me for my DD, 5, to eat that way. I think everyone is telling you to chill out because you seem like you're wigging out, and that you are blaming yourself way too much. Try to break it down, what is going on, and figure out how you can change it.

What time do you usually eat? What's your daily routine like? Are there any times of day that she actually seems hungry? Do you have any kind of schedule of when and where she eats? It sounds like she is making a lot of the choices and it's making you nuts. What's her activities like during the day--is she doing anything active to stimulate her appetite?

It's great that she likes fruit--what do you think she likes about fruits? The colors or the sweetness? Would she try something like sweet potatoes with a little maple syrup? Can you slice strawberries into salad and get her to try it that way?

Sounds like smaller portion sizes are a must. Personally--I might just stop buying cereal. But if you don't, what if you buy her own small cereal bowl. Make it special. Let DH know that is her bowl for cereal snacks.

All you can really do is keep offering the good stuff, and keep the bad stuff out of the house. Sounds like it will be a major battle with your DH, but it might be worth it. We make our own pizza once a week, and then I have leftovers on hand. Not as bad as the frozen stuff, at least I know what's in it and the quality of the ingredients.

My DD turned 5 in April and she weighs 36 lbs. She's slender but not skinny, and perfectly fine according to the dr. I find she likes plain foods--so, sliced chicken, single vegetables, not big on sauces or casseroles. She also changes her palate fairly regularly. A few months ago she was big on "yummy yummy tilapia" and then told us last night that she doesn't like it anymore. She has also informed me that she is no longer into string cheese or a "granola bar person" anymore. I find that usually happens once I buy in bulk from Costco. So, now the puzzle is figuring out what she IS into now. I think she's a good eater, but in a way we're playing the same guessing game that you are.
madskye is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 06:46 PM
 
serenbat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 4,407
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 126 Post(s)
I have seen this played out with a five year old we know, "picky" only cuts it so far in my book---I know the parents, they "give-in"- boxed mac & cheese, chocolate, cookies, pure junk, packaged processed all the better, etc all under "it's something"--not at my home!!

I don't let young children buy food, if it's not in the house, they don't drive them self to the store to get it.

I would not have items I don't consider "good" in the house- when the picky eater I know comes, we have what you get and that's all.

I have yet to see a child starve because of being picky.

I simply wouldn't offer any thing filled with empty calories.

 

 pro-transparency advocate

&

lurk.gif  PROUD member of the .3% club!

 

Want to join? Just ask me!

 

"You know, in my day we used to sit on our ass smoking Parliaments for nine months.

Today, you have one piece of Brie and everybody goes berserk."      ROTFLMAO.gif 

serenbat is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 07:02 PM
 
SollysMom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Syracuse, NY
Posts: 598
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I don't think anyone's saying that it's a good diet and you should just accept it.

If you don't want her to have cereal, don't have it in the house. Only buy brands that are acceptable to you, and maybe once a week she and daddy can have a special cereal treat together. Or, set very firm guidlines about when and how much cereal she is allowed to have. My DS loves Newman-O cookies and he knows that he gets one or two after dinner (not every night) and he knows if he asks earlier what my answer will be. It's funny to hear a 2-year-old saying "After dinner, you can have a cookie". But he knows.

Is there any chance you can make your own (healthier) pizza? Do you think she'd eat it? Pizza in and of itself doesn't have to be bad.

Faith, wife to Ben 9/24/05     Tandem nursing and cosleeping graduate (for now!), babywearing SAHM to Solomon 9/18/07 and Abram 12/10/09, expecting our 3rd boy in December/January!
Master Babywearing Educator and President of Babywearing International of Central New York
SollysMom is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 07:06 PM
 
ASusan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Midwest
Posts: 4,839
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by seashells View Post

I don't think there's much difference between raisin bran and cocoa puffs, no. Post Raisin bran is 30.4% sugar by dry weight. Cocoa Puffs is 33.3% sugar. (Source: http://www.karlloren.com/diet/p35.htm). And that's just the sugar part... the vitamins and minerals are denuded and not accessible to the body. It's better than full-on starving, I'll give you that. And I wouldn't even whine that much about it if it were just breakfast, but this is my child's DIET. Cardboard with 1/3 sugar by weight, basically. She's a growing child, she needs FOOD, with real vitamins and minerals and protein to help her grow and function. Sorry, after reading Nutrition and Physical Degeneration, I just can't be convinced that a diet of cereal is acceptable.
I just want to point out that the reason Raisin Bran is high in sugar is because of the raisins. Compare a box of Bran Flakes with Cocoa Puffs, and I think the Flakes (w/o raisins) will be a lot lower in sugar.

I agree with you on the vitamins not being (as) accessible to the body as non-processed food and that a diet of primarily cereal is unacceptable. However, if she is going to keep cereal in the diet (for now, because your DH thinks it is valuable or whatever), even in a small bowl at bedtime, how about Total Raisin Bran -- maybe SOME of those vitamins and minerals are accessible? And she is eating the cereal with milk, right?

can you add nuts to the cereal?

DS, 10/07. Allergies: peanut, egg, wheat. We've added dairy back in. And taken it back out again. It causes sandpaper skin with itchy patches and thrashing during sleep. Due w/ #2 late April, 2012.

ASusan is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 07:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
seashells's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 647
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Thank you... I admit I am very cranky today. Very, very cranky. Will review recent posts.
seashells is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 07:23 PM
 
mama2mygirl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 1,858
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by seashells View Post
I'm really amazed at the number of people on the Nutrition forum who think a diet of 85% Kellogg's cereal and 15% Elio's frozen pizza is an acceptable diet, and that my concern about it is the only problem.

Many reponses seem to assume, despite all that I've written to the contrary, that DD is generally eating from all food groups and that I'm just cranky because she didn't eat all her green beans. Or that I think she should clear her plate.

She eats nothing but cereal and the occasional bit of the poorest quality pizza you can buy.

I am really honestly stunned by this attitude. It's like telling a parent of a child with a major heart disease and experiencing problems with it that "way too much of your life is centered on your child's disease." Not only that, it's like THE SPECIAL NEEDS board telling a parent that. Since here I am supposedly writing on a forum filled with people interested in nutrition. Yet here you guys are, telling me that my child's diet is fiiiiiine and I need to take a chill pill, because we all know that Kellogg's Corn Flakes alone will feed a growing child optimally.

The irony strikes me that probably most of you guys are pro-breastfeeding because of all the benefits. But I guess the minute the kid is weaned, Kellogg's is all your child needs for a strong body and mind.
Oh, I'm not telling you that your child's diet is fiiiiiiiiine. I said I'd get rid of the cereal. *I* don't feed my child cereal because it's crap. *I* don't have it in the house. *I* don't offer them crappy frozen pizza. *I* don't start my day out by asking my child over and over again what she would eat. I put food in front of my girls --who, again, are also really, really small for their age--and if they don't eat it, they don't eat it.
If I played games and when those didn't work, they got to have a big bowl full of crappy cereal with Daddy, or a big old slice of crapizza, I guarantee that's what they would have. And it wouldn't be their problem. It would be mine.

:Mama to 2 :
mama2mygirl is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 07:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
seashells's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 647
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mosaic View Post
Nak...

My DD has nursing issues, so my new best friend is a pediatric dysphagia specialist. And through her, I've learned that picky eating is a much more complicated issue than I had previously thought.

This is from her website. Basically, if you feel you're doing everything "right" and still have problems, an expert can help you find therapies to help her accept new textures, etc. I'm not saying that your DD has a problem that's more than youthful stubbornness or a love of pizza; I'm not qualified to say either way. But I did want to throw it out there that pickiness really can lead to more serious problems down the road, and that there are experts out there that can help.
Thanks for the link, and I read through all of it.

The things I've taken away from that link and previous suggestions are:

1) Tiny, tiny portion sizes. I do feel like this would help. I think one reason DH gives huge portions, besides just not thinking about it (I think he does it without thinking; to him a bowl of cereal is a huge thing so he pours the same bowl he'd do for himself) is just so he doesn't have to constantly retop the bowl. Well, I'm willing to retop it 100 times. She DOES eat better with tiny portions. Sometimes she'll ask for more before she's even begun but I know better: "sure, as soon as you eat that, I'll give you more. There's plenty."

2) She has responded well to some "fun" in foods, though even that's gone out the window lately. But she saw a recipe for "rainbow rice balls" once, and I steamed brown rice in beets and added tiny beet chunks for a pretty pink color, along with cheese and basil (she actually likes basil). And it's not enough to have it pretty colors, I have to shape it into a ball. Fine I'll shape it into a dinosaur if it helps. Heck, maybe I CAN, I do have a huge collection of cookie cutters... HMM, I gotta think what I could cut out with those cookie cutters!!! Giraffe PB&Js? Lion-shaped homemade pizza? Maple-leaf shaped ... what, help me out here guys!! I think this could actually help!!

3) I do have a few dishes that are interesting. I have a dish meant for devilled eggs, they have cute ducks and bunnies on them. And I can put tiny foods in the spots for each egg - a devilled egg in one, 3 olives in another, you get the idea. I did actually try this a month ago and she was excited but didn't eat much. But I can try again. I also have an Asian rectangle flat plate that she likes. Maybe I could even take her to the store and have her pick out a special plate or bowl of her very own. Our dish collection is 100% eclectic anyway, nothing matches. I'm willing to go so far as to associate a certain dish with a certain plate. So rice and beans ONLY go into this cool dish. Apple and peanut butter snacks ONLY go into this other cool dish. Hey, I think this is a cool idea, I might ask her to buy FIVE very different plates and bowls, and let her decide what goes in each of them. So if she wants the special BRIGHT RED SQUARE PLATE she knows that hamburger goes on it. Of course the drawback is that she might just request a food because she likes the dish but still refuse to eat the food. But worth a shot.

4) I think the cereal just has to go. She can have oatmeal for breakfast, or fruit and cheese. She can have dinner for breakfast for all I care but I think she is literally addicted to cereal, the quick rush of sugar to the bloodstream. Cereal is VERY easy to digest - it just doesn't last long or help a growing body. I'm fine with cereal in moderation, but moderation doesn't seem to be happening. She may be like me - I don't moderate very well. I have a sweet tooth, and the easiest way for me to fight it is to eschew it totally. Some people don't understand and think that I'm making sugar a bigger thing than it has to be, but it's the opposite. When I moderate, sugar is always there in my mind, lurking, a temptation. When I completely take it out of my diet, it's gone. No struggle. I move on with my life. Maybe she's like that too. She can still get treats every now and then, but I think she's literally dependent on cereal, and maybe it should just go.

5) I should follow a stricter schedule for meals and snacks. We all tend to eat just whenever. We are all home together (DH and I work from home and DD homeschools) so schedules just aren't a major factor for us. I do, however, appreciate the value of a schedule. We don't let DD go hungry, believe me, but maybe just saying, "OK, it's 12 o'clock and that means we eat lunch. And there's no more food until the 2:30pm snack" might make a shift in her thinking. Right now, it's like her whole life is a great big smorgasboard. Well, a smorgasboard with only cereal on it. Whenever she's hungry she gets the food, but it is better to have a predictable routine. Maybe letting her experience hunger might help too (I know that sounds bad, but I don't mean it like that - but she expects if she's hungry, that she will be fed within 3 minutes. As opposed to, it's 4:30 and getting close to dinner, and we start getting hungry and look forward to dinner and anticipate it).

I do expect and accept "phases" - if she goes through a few days when she hardly eats anything, DH worries a lot but I tell him it's ok. Then, sure enough, she'll go through a day or two where she eats quite a bit. I expect that. And I don't expect perfect nutrition every day. If she gets enough protein in a WEEK I'm good. I know I sound overanxious to most people, but honestly I'm laid-back about this stuff - to a point.
seashells is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 07:44 PM
 
wednesday2004's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 750
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by mama2mygirl View Post
Oh, I'm not telling you that your child's diet is fiiiiiiiiine. I said I'd get rid of the cereal. *I* don't feed my child cereal because it's crap. *I* don't have it in the house. *I* don't offer them crappy frozen pizza. *I* don't start my day out by asking my child over and over again what she would eat. I put food in front of my girls --who, again, are also really, really small for their age--and if they don't eat it, they don't eat it.
If I played games and when those didn't work, they got to have a big bowl full of crappy cereal with Daddy, or a big old slice of crapizza, I guarantee that's what they would have. And it wouldn't be their problem. It would be mine.

I was really judgemental (not to their face, but in my head) of people who had kids with food issues when my oldest was little. I thought there had to be something THEY were doing wrong to cause it. My oldest child ate almost anything, no problems at all.......Then my 2nd was born. I took the same food approach but this one eats very, very few foods. I know about nutrition, I know how to cook, I know about food! However , it made no difference. Sometimes a kids food issues are part of their make-up. That's how they are. Some outgrow it with patience, others don't. It's not always something the parents are doing wrong, but sometimes there are things a parent can do to help their child with this issue. Sometimes the kid will defy all attempts. I don't believe it's usually a willfulness or stubbornness issue, I believe a lot of times it's a sensory issue.
I'm touchy myself on this subject because of some opinionated people who assumed that my child is picky because of something I did. What they don't know is that my first child was usually in the 90th to 110th percentile in growth and height. Clearly he wasn't fussy.

Note to people on the other end of this spectrum...people with 'big' kids......my first is now all grown up and tall and thin.
wednesday2004 is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 07:45 PM - Thread Starter
 
seashells's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 647
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by seagull View Post
I am with you that there is no difference between Raisin Bran and Coco Puffs, but there are better choices for packaged cereal. We only use plain cheerios. If your dd is eating bowls of the sugar stuff, no wonder she isn't in the mood for other food. It must be so frustrating to try to cook for your family. I guess if it was my child, I would find a doctor to run an allergy panel. What if your child has an allergy or intolerance to milk for example, that is mild enough to not show obvious symptoms but would make the child not feel like eating more food. Is your child really active? I know that my "picky eater" will eat anything in sight after swimming. So that is when I load up raw veggies in the cooler.
Good luck.
I would love it if we only had plain Cheerios in our house. If I were a single mom, that would be it. But I'm half of a parenting team, and DH brings home the cereal he likes. (I am unable to drive so he does the grocery shopping - he knows my feelings on cereal and that's all I can really do).

She eats these cereals which I am ok with in moderation (though we've NOT acheived moderation with them):
- Special K
- Rice Krispies
- Cheerios
- Kashi
- Corn Flakes

And the stuff we consider treats but DH stll buys:
- Raisin Bran
- Honey Bunches of Oats
- Life

An allergy panel is a consideration. If I ask for an allergy panel, do I need to be able to say what I suspect, or do they just do a general panel? Because I have no idea what she could be allergic to, if anything.

And I'm not sure if I can say how active DD is. I don't know anything about kids, really, just DD. I'm certain she's not lethargic. She swims, plays. She can jog with me for about a half mile, sometimes up to a mile. She is not as active as other kids I see, she can't climb things (hypotonic) and is quite calm compared to hyperactive children. I think she's normally active, though possibly a little on the "less active" side but not "sedate."

I have, however, noticed that large amounts of activity don't seem to affect her in terms of appetite nor sleep. It's weird, we can spend all day outside running and swimming and her appetite is the same and she doesn't go to bed any earlier. The only time I ever saw that happen was when we went to Disney, and she conked out in the car on the way home.
seashells is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 07:48 PM
 
Pookietooth's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: SF Bay Area
Posts: 5,016
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
My ds is also rather picky, as is a close friend of his. I've seen his friend's parents struggle with her over the foods she will eat, and get angry about her issues. I get angry with ds about it too sometimes (especially the throwing away good food), but really I think it's wise to avoid a power struggle around food, which is what it sounds like you've ended up with. I think it's the age and unfortunately as the mom of a seven year old, I have to say it does continue or in some cases get worse as they get older. One thing: it's better not to call sweet foods a treat, but instead call them what they are sweets; in our house treats mean toys or getting to do something you really love.
You don't mention meat. Are you vegetarians or does she refuse meat? Does she have food allergies or intolerances? Was she born premature? Many premies aren't aware of their own hunger. Does she eat when she's around other kids eating things she wouldn't normally eat? I know a lot of folks say just cut out all the junk and let them go hungry until they eat acceptable foods, but I know in our case if we do that, ds will have terrible temper tantrums and be impossible to deal with, because he will let himself get that hungry. If she has so many things she won't eat, she could benefit from treatment by a feeding specialist -- can you call your pediatrician or children's hospital for a referral?
I would guess gluten and dairy would be her most probable sensitivities, as they are common, and since they are some of the few foods she will eat (both because they are addictive if there is an intolerance and because eating a lot of something frequently can cause an issue). Also, gluten and casein both exacerbate sensory issues in those who are sensitive, which in turn makes them picker eaters (vicious cycle).
Will she drink green smoothies?

Jen 47 DS C 2/03  angel.gif04/29/08/ DD S 10/28/09 DH Bill '97.

mighty-mama and her sister Kundalini-Mamacandle.gif

Pookietooth is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 08:04 PM - Thread Starter
 
seashells's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 647
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by madskye View Post
I'd be totally concerned too and it would not be acceptable to me for my DD, 5, to eat that way. I think everyone is telling you to chill out because you seem like you're wigging out, and that you are blaming yourself way too much. Try to break it down, what is going on, and figure out how you can change it.
I am known to wig and I acknowledge that. Unfortunately, I tend to wig more when people tell me I'm overreacting

Quote:
Originally Posted by madskye View Post
What time do you usually eat? What's your daily routine like? Are there any times of day that she actually seems hungry? Do you have any kind of schedule of when and where she eats? It sounds like she is making a lot of the choices and it's making you nuts. What's her activities like during the day--is she doing anything active to stimulate her appetite?
I've responded to each post in turn so in a previous reply I admitted that our eating routine could use improvement. We don't have artificial schedules due to our lifestyles, so we would have to make the effort to implement one. Which I'm willing to do.

She probably does something moderately active 6 out of 7 days a week - going to a playground, swimming at the lake or Y, jogging with us, or playing with the kids next door (they are an exercise routine of their own, believe me). She is not the most active kid in the world, but does get outside and do stuff.

Quote:
Originally Posted by madskye View Post
It's great that she likes fruit--what do you think she likes about fruits? The colors or the sweetness? Would she try something like sweet potatoes with a little maple syrup? Can you slice strawberries into salad and get her to try it that way?
Yeah, she likes fruit because it's sweet. She has my sweet tooth. Though some people have some (valid) concerns about the glycemic index of fruit, I do not restrict whole fruit at all. Juice is considered a treat, but whole fruit is a perfectly valid food to eat around here - it can be dinner for all I care. I also do make her smoothies. I dump coconut oil in them to get some fat into her, but my attempts at sneaking protein (namely peanut butter or tahini) have failed I got caught. I've been known to sneak single leaves of baby spinach in, too, but I can't get away with it too much because it turns it quite green. Yes, I'm willing to serve sweet potatoes with maple or honey or applesauce with plenty of cinnamon. Good idea. The strawberries in a salad would not fly, though We typically add a bit of fruit to our salads and she would never, ever, ever, ever eat a leaf of lettuce or spinach. Just the berries. And she'd probably reject them just for TOUCHING greens.

Quote:
Originally Posted by madskye View Post
Sounds like smaller portion sizes are a must. Personally--I might just stop buying cereal. But if you don't, what if you buy her own small cereal bowl. Make it special. Let DH know that is her bowl for cereal snacks.
Sounds brilliant, and she has 2 such bowls but if they are dirty DH will reach for whatever. LOL.

Quote:
Originally Posted by madskye View Post
All you can really do is keep offering the good stuff, and keep the bad stuff out of the house. Sounds like it will be a major battle with your DH, but it might be worth it. We make our own pizza once a week, and then I have leftovers on hand. Not as bad as the frozen stuff, at least I know what's in it and the quality of the ingredients.
I consider my homemade pizza a health food, lol.

Quote:
Originally Posted by madskye View Post
My DD turned 5 in April and she weighs 36 lbs. She's slender but not skinny, and perfectly fine according to the dr. I find she likes plain foods--so, sliced chicken, single vegetables, not big on sauces or casseroles. She also changes her palate fairly regularly. A few months ago she was big on "yummy yummy tilapia" and then told us last night that she doesn't like it anymore. She has also informed me that she is no longer into string cheese or a "granola bar person" anymore. I find that usually happens once I buy in bulk from Costco. So, now the puzzle is figuring out what she IS into now. I think she's a good eater, but in a way we're playing the same guessing game that you are.
But when she rejects tilapia, does she replace it - sooner or later - with something else she likes? Mine is not and we're down to just about nothing at this point.
seashells is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 08:18 PM
 
madskye's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 2,183
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by seashells View Post



But when she rejects tilapia, does she replace it - sooner or later - with something else she likes? Mine is not and we're down to just about nothing at this point.
So far, yes. She used to really like mixed diced veg--I bought a 5lb bag of it at Costco and she decided no more! But then she got into carrots with ranch dressing. So, okay.

I mentioned schedule--I don't ever tell her she can't eat if she's hungry and it's off "the schedule" but what I do when she's hungry at 4 is feed her a mini-meal. If she's really hungry at 4, and dinner is coming soon, I make her a plate of a few pieces of sliced chicken, carrots or broccoli and dip, string cheese in the past or some crackers and cheese. That way, I know she's getting something "meal-like" when she is hungry. I cook a couple of chicken breasts every Monday and keep them in the fridge-I actually started that last year because I needed to lose weight and I visited a nutritionist. I keep them on hand for salads and to add to pasta meals where I don't want to fill up on carbs and my husband does.
madskye is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 09:41 PM
 
Smokering's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: New Zealand
Posts: 8,313
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Hmm. DD's a surprisingly good eater now, at 2.5, but when she was 1-2 she vastly preferred breastmilk over solids. I found that she got bored with eating if I didn't sit with her. Even when she was physically capable of feeding herself, and presumably hungry, she didn't want to sit there alone and eat. The more involved I was - not cajoling, but sitting there talking to her, giving her a bite, giving her the spoon, letting her feed me - the more she'd eat. She's still a bit like that (although she makes an exception for things she REALY loves, like pastries and chips!).

Have you noticed she eats more if you're engaged with her during the meal? Or, heck, if you're not?

My only other idea is making some of her healthy foods less healthy (temporarily!) to wean her off cereal. I mean, if the alternative is her eating sugar-laden cereal, you may as well add a ridiculous quantity of maple syrup to yoghurt and offer her that. It'll be more nutritious (well, I believe processed cereal is actually harmful, not just worthless, so it's definitely an improvement on that!).Then maybe, after a while, you can start decreasing the maple syrup.

Honestly, though, it sounds like she could use a good workup for... something. Allergies? I don't know, but I think you may be at the point where medical intervention is required. Isn't there some vitamin or mineral deficiency that causes loss of appetite? I don't think you're making a mountain out of a molehill at all, and I can only imagine how frustrating it must be for you.

If decomposition persists please see your necromancer.

Smokering is offline  
Old 08-03-2010, 10:41 PM
 
Mama2Xander's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 869
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
OK, here's what I was thinking earlier - I think some of it has already been mentioned though (I just skimmed replies):

It does sound like more than just "picky" eating to me.

*does she have sensory issues related to food? This is not something I know much about (I have one kiddo with SPD but he's a seeker, not an avoider, so I haven't needed to research that particular topic much), but if you think this is a possibility, there are moms on the special needs forum who will be able to give some pointers.

*I would seriously look into allergies/intolerances. You could get her allergy tested, but the testing most doctors do will only look for true allergic reactions, not sensitivities or intolerances. The best way to find out is to try eliminating the foods that you suspect may be causing problems. Dairy and gluten are the 2 most common, soy and corn are common as well. It sounds like she is probably eating a lot of wheat and corn in the cereals, and I'm assuming she's having milk with the cereal too? Kids can become very addicted to the foods they are sensitive for, and crave them (and refuse to eat anything else). Honestly I would probably cut the cereal out completely. That tends to be easier for a lot of people than trying to moderate their intake of a food that is addictive/problematic.

*Could be nutritional deficiencies involved. I think it is a zinc deficiency that can cause suppressed appetite? Have you tried any supplements for her? I'd at least try to get a good quality multivitamin & mineral supplement - maybe a liquid one that you could hide in juice (does she drink juice?)

*Will she drink smoothies? You can hide lots of stuff in there

*I would really try to focus on nutrient-dense foods for when she will eat. eg. avocados, nuts, etc. It sounds like she is eating very little fat? Kids (and adults) really need healthy fats, but I'm sure you are aware of that.

*I say this gently, but... it sounds like your DH is in some kind of denial here? Or just really not on board with decent nutrition? (and I understand that you are not looking for perfection). What do you think would help get him on board? I just think you are going to have a tough time if he is constantly contradicting your efforts (plus if he does the grocery shopping, he needs to be buying appropriate foods).

*If you really don't want to cut out the cereal completely, and you can't get DH on board with this whole thing, maybe you could divide the box of cereal up into individual servings ahead of time? (just use little baggies or something - I know it's not environmentally friendly, but at least if they just have dry cereal in them you can keep reusing them for the same purpose). That way even if DD's little bowls are not available, the baggies would serve as a reminder of appropriate portions, and DH couldn't "forget" and pour a gigantic bowl.

*I don't think I would wait tooooooooooo long to see some improvement here. I know you said you don't like doctors generally (and I agree that they are not usually the best people to consult with about nutrition!!), but it is *possible* that your DD could have some kind of underlying medical issue that is affecting her appetite. Would you be willing to see a naturopath? Or even a holistic nutritionist could give you some pointers (I don't think they can order tests though, but I could be wrong about that). Maybe try posting in FYT for suggestions. Maybe someone will even know of a decent doctor.

Good luck, mama, it does sound tough. I think you are right to be concerned though. If *you* think it's a problem, trust that.

ETA: Oh, and I would definitely be concerned about her iron levels. It doesn't sound like she is getting much/any in her diet? (the cereal might be fortified, but if she is having it with milk, she won't be absorbing the iron well. Plus you need vitamin C to absorb iron).
Mama2Xander is offline  
 
User Tag List

Thread Tools


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off