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I know it won't come across to many as a surprise that a 20 month old has a strong preference for nursing, but lately I can barely get him to eat any other food. It is quite frustrating, because 1) while I still have an adequate milk supply, it isn't like it used to be due to my part-time working and also attempts at night weaning, and 2) he is still an average weight, but at his 18 month visit he was actually down in weight compared to three months before (the ped didn't even mention it, though - I didn't notice until later) and 3) I prepare good stuff that I know he likes or will like, but he just won't even try it.<br><br>
When I am working he will usually eat a decent amount of food. But if I am around... forget it, he'd rather nurse.<br><br>
Is this just an age-old story? Any tips for encouraging more food in his diet? When do you think I will start to see a change?<br><br>
Thanks <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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gosh i didnt even try. my dd didnt really start eating till she turned 2. she mainly lived on bm. yeah when i was away she ate, but not when i was around.<br><br>
also i noticed she did that when she was going thru an emotional growth spurt. she would nurse and nurse and nurse.<br><br>
i am not sure when you will see a change. each child is different and they all go thru phases.<br><br>
however i would be v. careful not to make food an issue.
 

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Thanks for your thoughts! I don't see food as an issue, just a small lingering concern in the back of my mind. I think what he is doing is normal, but sometimes need affirmation of that.
 

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sound normal to me. trust me, when he hits 15yo you wont be able to keep him out of the fridge! (from a mama who has btdt and is currently going broke feeding her teenager LOL)
 

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I should have read this thread first because I just started a similar thread about my 2.5y/o. The one epiphany I had this morning was that I offered him some food when it had been a while since he last nursed, but before he asked to nurse again. He ate more than he usually does in the morning, so that's a good step.
 

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sounds like my ds, who is also 20 months. I swear he lives on goldfish crackers and breastmilk right now <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment"> He was eating really well there for a while, now most meals he will barely touch. and forget about veggies or healthy food. I just keep offering hoping he'll decided to eat. My LLL leader is big on the 'nibble tray' where you put out little bites of several foods, veggies, cheese, crackers, fruit, etc. for your LO to eat on all day, as they feel like it. But my ds will eat the cheese and crackers and leave the veggies. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/shrug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="shrug">
 

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Same here. He will eat, but he is extremely picky and what he'll eat one day he turns his nose up at the next <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> I'd love to say that I take it all in stride and am totally cool with him nursing a ton and barely eating anything, but it drives me nuts especially since he's not gaining weight as much as he ought apparently. We have a weight check tomorrow at the Dr's. I'm hoping that he will one day decide he likes to eat real food and decrease nursing on his own. So far all the weaning he's done has been from us the parents (nightweaning) instead of from him.
 

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I restricted nursing with both of my kids so that they would eat more. It was clear that they just preferred to nurse, not that they had any food aversions.<br><br>
I was just tired of nursing all the time so it worked for me.
 

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I'm so glad you asked this, I have a 22m who hardly eats but nurses all.the.time. I don't mind but was worried that at this age she is missing something nutrition wise. Glad that I don't have to worry so much. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin">
 

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DD just turned 22mo and still barely eats... I do have a lot of luck getting her to eat more when I offer food before she asks to nurse, but honestly, she is so dang picky that it's frustrating... I also have luck with her not being so clingy and wanting to nurse all the time if I try and offer her boobies before she asks for it - she does much better if I'm in "control" of the boobies for some reason.
 

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My DD was exactly the same at 20 months. I'd always planned on nursing at least till she was two, but there was a stage there between 18 and 23-ish months that it drove. me. crazy. She still, at 27 months, nurses more frequently than the average newborn <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/rolleyes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="rolleyes">, but she also eats like a horse. She started actually getting interested in food for the first time when she started preschool two days a week (at 23 months) and was away from me for a few hours a week. They feed her all organic, vegetarian food at preschool <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love">, so now she loves green vegetables, beans, and fresh fruit. She still has days when she doesn't eat, but I never worry about it. Hardly pay attention to it, actually--I just keep food on her toddler table and she eats what she wants. (She's been eating nonstop for the past hour and a half...<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">)
 

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Do you eat regular sit-down meals as a family? I have always found that my kids eat the best (including my 13-month old) and healthiest when they eat at regular intervals, at the table. That doesn't mean that they don't get snacks but it does mean that snack time is generally at a certain time (although not fixed in stone - we are flexible - but they are not munching on things all morning long) and that they eat their snack at the table with a plate in front of them, not while they are walking around or doing something else. That way, they associate that time with eating. For the baby, it helps a lot if I am sitting down beside him and also eating.<br><br>
Avoid giving crackers and other starchy processed foods in between meals. They are not healthy and they fill the stomach.
 

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My kids generally eat better with food at set times too. Not FIXED but not nibbling all day either.<br><br>
I've known people who just didn't focus much attention on amount of food or amount of nursing at this age and the kids i'm thinking of now are significantly older, healthy, and eat a variety of healthy things--much better than most other kids I know actually.<br><br>
I've also known one friend in particular comes to mind who "just said no" until after dinner. That child now is also happy and healthy many years later.<br><br>
Mothering Your Nursing Toddler is an excellent book from La Leche League with *many* options to choose from for this situation. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> (one, like another poster said, is to offer food at a midway point between nursings--when the child is probably hungry, but not *starving*, and not at an accustomed nursing time, and offer a favorite food of the child's. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"> )<br><br>
Another important thing to remember when trying to cut back on nursing with a child of *any* age--the last nursing times to go will be the ones the child uses the most for comfort. Typically these will be bedtime, naptimes, and when they wake up. Many moms find that after some success with cutting back on other nursings, they enjoy these times more and continue to nurse. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> (not that I hear you saying you're wanting to STOP at all...but if the constant nursing is starting to get tiring, this changes. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> )<br><br>
Also, I have found, and I know some other moms have agreed, that distraction can work wonders--if you're finding your child wants to nurse all morning long at random, find an activity you'll enjoy doing together instead that happens after breakfast and everything is taken care of and ends before lunch/nap. My son will ask to nurse at random if we're just home and I'm not busy-looking, but if we're out at the park or playing, he doesn't even remember! And he'll happily munch on snacks if I happen to have them--other moms have found too their toddlers will snack on the go. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
good luck finding something that works for both of you!
 
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