My DS is 17 months old. He still nurses about 3-4 times a day, but his food habits are starting to drive me crazy! I need some suggestions or reassurance and am hoping you all can provide it =)
He used to be a great eater. He'd eat almost anything I put in front of him. Lately he'll focus in on one food for several days and will refuse to eat anything else. For example, the only things he would eat today were tomatos and wheat crackers (literally... I tried about a dozen different foods). He refused all of dinner, signing that he was "all done", but then not five minutes later signed that he was "hungry" and started banging on the pantry doors. My husband offered him more tomatos and he gobbled them up.
So do I limit the amount of one food that he eats? I'm so worried he's not getting what he needs. I'm worried that he's still hungry. I know I'm supposed to trust him to tell me when he's full, but I just don't understand. Any suggestions or good books on this topic would be so appreciated.
I know it's hard not to worry about what our kids are eating. Instead of stressing out about it, I try to let my son choose his own foods. I listen to my own body when I'm hungry, so why shouldn't he?
From what I understand, it's totally normal for toddlers to get on kicks where they eat the same food for days and then abruptly switch to a new food. I know my son sure does that. At dinner, I always give him some of everything that we are eating. Sometimes he will eat all of his meat and leave everything else. If he wants more meat, I'll give it to him. Then, the next day, he will only eat the vegetables and want more of them. So, he might not eat a balanced meal, but overall he has a balanced diet.
The approach I take is just to offer healthy choices and let him decide from there.
My lo does this, so one times I kept track of his "binging" for a month or so, and found he ate all colors or fruits and veggies, plenty of almond milk (yes, i think it's good for him to drink it, no flaming!), and plenty of protein/fat in between the binging. It made me feel much better :)
I think it's wise to look at all they're eating over a week, not a day and certainly not one meal.
I sometimes worry that my boy isn't getting enough, or enough of the right foods (he's 13 months), but that's one reason I am so grateful for breastfeeding! I figure he is still getting plenty of nutrients and filling up from my milk when he wants it, so I sort of see that as the backup if all else fails.
Mama since 2010
Multicultural living in Europe
My 20 mo DS alternates between hoovering food down, and barely eating a thing whilst nursing 8-10 times a day. He'll do one or the other for weeks at a time. Currently we are on a low food / high nursing period, I dont sweat it. Yesterday, he had a few sips of my breakfast juice (mostly vegatables, juiced at home) and I think he ate a handfull of annies cheddar bunnies later in the evening, and he took a few bites off an apple. Other than that, it was breastmilk all day. I dont sweat it. I offer consistently, if he eats it, he eats it. If not, he nurses, and I dont worry about it. I used to, but he is a 34 Ib super healthy kid who never gets sick, so I started trusting him more to know what he needs, and trust my body to give it to him if he isnt getting it from solids.
Hope that helps alleviate some worry =)
Thanks for the replies! I'm trying very hard not to get frustrated with the eating thing. My biggest concern is that he really doesn't increase his nursing when he decreases his variety. He just wants one or two things for EVERY meal and snack. One day he literally ate 3 cups of cherry tomatoes and maybe a quarter cup of wheat crackers and only nursed four times.
It doesn't help that my mom, who normally gives me very solid advice, thinks that I should give him his meal and that's that. If he doesnt eat it, offer it again later. She really thinks he's old enough to be told "this is what I have to offer and that's that" kind of attitude and keeps suggesting he's going to be a pickey eater if I just give in.
I just don't want food to be power struggle!
3 cups of cherry tomatoes and some ww crackers sounds awesome to me! I would be really happy if LO ate that lol... I think you are overthinking things at this point, but it is hard not to, I know :)
Our LO is almost 16 months and a very sporatic eater. He still nurses like mad, is healthy, and puts on weight fine. I think toddler eating habits are all over the map. Basically, we offer a variety of only healthy foods and take comfort in the fact that he's nutritionally in good shape from the breastmilk. I do feel like it's a whopping victory if we get a couple spoonfuls or bites or whatever in him at any given time! So, we're right there with you!
I got tired of my signature, but I still love my children and husband and miss my little brother.