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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This was from another post and just had a question

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We don't make mealtimes or food a battle at all. Our daughter eats what she wants, when she wants, and how much she wants ---I am usually agreeable in accomodating her within reason-- in other words, I am not agreeable to cooking 5 seperate dinners but I will get out fruit/yogurt/toast/cheese/vegetable slices (whatever) all day long --
DO you have issues with wasting food? My DD is the worldest pickest eater though we also have the no food battles thing but my DD is famous for asking for things I know she will not eat (like shes famous for asking for peas which I have NEVER wittinessed her actually eatting other foods are so hit and miss we waste tons on her and were on Food stamps so its hard to see the waste (finacially) so she'll ask for toast I'll make her a slice she'll not touch it. I've give her a spoon ful of yogurt a sice of cheese a bit of fruit ect and tel her eat that then you can have more it goes to waste 99% of the time or she throughs a fit because I want give her say the whole bag of cheese or bag of peas. Food put back untill shes ready just sit and sit. I was just wondering how "eatting" looks like at your home. Mine will go days with out eatting no matter what I try.

Deanna
 

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Quote:
I was just wondering how "eatting" looks like at your home.

Well, thanks for asking
Now I feel all special a post for me


Fortunately our daughter isn't too picky an eater and usually eats what we eat, but we do have an issue with wasting food at times. I don't really like it, but at the same time I figure the little food she wastes is miniscule in the scheme of things, and also (imo) if the choice is a bit of food wasted or a harmonious home and mealtime, I will always choose the former. (BTW, we live simply, both voluntarily and due to financial reasons, so wasting food isn't a luxury by any means -- but I still choose that over a battle or force or coercion).

How mealtimes look at our house are basically we eat when we want to eat, what we want to eat, and how much we want to eat. I am a sahm and my dh usually leaves later in the morning so we do have breakfast together -- but *together* can mean a lot of things. We sometimes eat in the kitchen while our daughter eats in her high chair. Sometimes we eat there and she plays, sometimes we eat in the common area and she is in her high chair, or not -- sometimes we eat on the floor picnic style, whatever. We have an open plan so the whole living area and kitchen are visible to one another.

We either eat the same thing or different things, whichever. Today for instance, my husband ate polenta porrige style with syrup and milk (blech lol) I had a smoothie and our daughter had yogurt, part of a banana, a sip of my smoothie and a bite of Daddy's porrige


This is the same thing at lunch, which varies depending on who's hungry and when. Sometimes my husband is home for lunch (when he has later classes, he teaches guitar and bass), sometimes not. Either I will make something, or we all make whatever. I really like to cook so my husband usually eats what I make when I cook, and our daughter does too --- though sometimes he gets his own thing and either he or I get something for dd if she doesn't want what we are making. Right now there isn't a lot of "preparation" involved in dd's grazing -- she likes simple foods --- fruit, yogurt, tofu cubes, org cheese, veggie slices, grilled *cheeze* (vegan), things of that nature -- so I never feel as if I am "cooking" 5 times a day or anything.

Our daughter is pretty verbal for her age so she lets me know she is hungry by either signing, (she does the sign for *more* for food but I know what she means), or she opens the fridge and looks around (but sometimes she does that for fun
) or she says "huuuuuuuuuun" (hungry) so I ask, "are you hungry? What should we eat?"

At this age I usually offer some choices, all of which she likes and if I am not met with protest or she actually verbalizes or signs one of the foods, that is agreement in my book. If she says no to all of the choices, which is rare but does happen, I ask her to *show me* what she wants in the fridge. Okay, that almost always works except when she pointed to the thai hot sauce
--- 99.9% of the time though, the choices I offer are agreeable to her because they are all things she likes.

With the issue of your daughter wanting the *whole bag* etc... i wonder if it isn't just that she wants control over the food and where it is coming from --- In other words, it may look like she wants the whole bag of cheese or the whole thing of peas, but maybe she just wants to decide how much she does or doesn't eat by "serving herself" if you will. Do you think it may be agreeable to her if you tranfered the peas to another container, leaving an amount you are willing to waste in the bag, then just give her the bag? If she doesn't eat any, then you are only wasting a bit. Same with the bag of cheese, perhaps you could get a little container that could be just *her* cheese or whatever and if she expresses interest in cheese, simply hand it to her, no fuss, no reminder, no lecture or expectation -- just a simple "here is your cheese honey, let me know when you're finished okay?" and go on your merry way. I don't know if that would work, just throwing it out there.

I am assuming your daughter is nearly 4 (if I have done my math right
) --- so maybe simply telling her the truth in a non-punitive, informational manner would help -- even if it is an ongoing (and seemingly non-effective) conversation. Even if you began modeling for her in a more obvious way -- like when you are finished with something you could say something like "I think I'm going to save the rest for later" and puyt it in the fridge or whatever. That, with also explaining to her that she can have whatever she wants to eat but you'd appreciate it if she helped minimizing waste by putting the rest away until later, or never, or whenever.

Like I mentioned, we don't have too picky of an eater here, and I can only sympathize with you on that --and it must be unnerving when she doesn't eat --- is her health okay? I mean is she growing/gaining all right? Does she have any food sensitivities or allergies you may not be aware of? If you have already gotten to the bottom of those things and they all check out normal/okay ---- I would seriously suggest dropping food issues all together.

Our daughter eats whatever is in our home, whether that be vegan ice cream, or crackers, or celery, or chocolate baking chips or a sip of daddy's coffee in the morning (which she doesn't like by the way
) --- When she gets a bit older and can be more active in the food buying process we will definately consider her preferences and try to meet any food *need* with respect to our personal and ethical boundaries (we are strict vegetarians).

So far we haven't had any issues at all foodwise. We have just always followed her cues and provided information in the most objective way possible. We express our preferences too, but always try to present them as preferences (I don't care for ____ instead of , ___ is yucky or whatever).

We try not to evaluate how our daughter eats day to day (to ourselves, we never evaluate her eating to her -- but rather, make observations *you seem to like _____* for example) We look at her eating as a whole. Sure, some days she lives off of org. yogurt and bananas, which isn't too balanced, but then others she gets veggies and lots of plant-based proteins... other days she seems to hardly eat at all, but then the next day no one's plate is safe in this house


I often hear people saying things like "I am not a short oder cook!!" and the like.. and I completely agree. I don't cook every day, and when I do, I don't cook 10 meals
I find though, there are many *kid friendly* things that can be made with very little or no time or effort that can be farily healthy. Heck, they even make annie's mac n cheese which is organic with no partially hydrogenated oils etc... okay, it's not the healthiest thing on the planet but it's not the *un*healthiest thing either. There are veggie sticks/slices with dip, fruit, yogurt, hummus/crackers, leftovers, sanwhiches, smoothies, frozen yogurt or soy ice cream (which is all pretty low fat and not nearly as much sugar as regular), there are fruit leathers, ....you know the drill.

I think one of the big things is that people get into this mindset of we *have* to eat *breastfast* foods at breakfast, and X time, lunch foods at lunch at X time, and so on.... We just eat anything at any time -- we do have an *approximate* breakfast/lunch/dinner type situation on most days but it is not set in stone.

Both my daughter and husband are at healthy regular weights -- I am the only overweight one, but suprisingly (or not so), that happened long before eating in this manner. It (imo) is the result of the one more bites, the clean your plate, the you can't leave the table, the no dessert until you eat, the we sit down to every meal together, the here is a cookie when you're good, the no dessert when you're *bad* the bribing with food, shaming with food, going to beb hungry because you haven't eaten at ___ time.... (along with other emotional/physical abuse)

I will never make food an issue in our home, and we are all healthier for it, physically and emotionally (imo).

Hope that helps at all, let me know if you have any other questions.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you for taking the time to answer
truth is our DD food issues that stem from a variety of reasons are soo out their (I have never met another like her) I sometimes need a picture of what its like for others. I just came home from a long vaccation at my parents and yea I love them but good gosh if I heard on more time how I just needed to "be the parent and make her eat"
: and then of course watched my brother who uses threats and punishments to get his kids to eat. They look at how "well" his kids eat and say to me see.. They learned. Umm whatever those kids just like to eat despite the threats..
: 0
I dont mind the little bit of waste but its big time and los of it a lot comes cause daddy gives big pieces
: or cause she gets something out herself then leaves it for us to discover later. We have all meals at the table there is really no othr room plus wih DD apraxia and her tendency to choak on certain foods ( a big source of the problem) we established the at table rule but thats never an issue shes used to it. I do prefer if we all eat together but I wont like make her wait or anything.

Quote:
With the issue of your daughter wanting the *whole bag* etc... i wonder if it isn't just that she wants control over the food and where it is coming from --- In other words, it may look like she wants the whole bag of cheese or the whole thing of peas, but maybe she just wants to decide how much she does or doesn't eat by "serving herself" if you will. Do you think it may be agreeable to her if you tranfered the peas to another container, leaving an amount you are willing to waste in the bag, then just give her the bag?
Yea we tried this and it made things 100 times worse she 1 screams if I dare to transfer things I tried the reverse switching most then giving her the bag with a few same melt down. Or what annoys me to no end...
Mommy I wanna bannana please (she speach delayed but shes getting much better)
Me: Okay go cut off a piece and hand it too her
Cecilia- No THANK YOU! stomp stomp!
Me: You wanted a bannana here it is at that and your welcomed to have more
Cecilia NO Bannana! (in a melt down)
ME if you want it latter it will be here
Cecilia I want Bannana1 and grabs it off table runs upstairs and tosses it into some toy box or someother annoying place it will be discovered latter all black and stinky
: Its weird she doesn't do this with anything else just food. or I'll open the fridge to get something out for dinner Cecilia will come see the door open and yell NO food!!! try to force it close. its totally weird I tell you. (then well have days when all goes fine.)
She has other weird food quirks that are annoying but I can play along like she refused to eat more than one color of food during a meal (even if seperate) so we have lots of Mac N cheese carrorts chhese and oranges. she has "assigned" chairs for certain foods like a cereal chair or a chicken chair and No we didn't do that that one cracks us up though. If it came from a box she must see the box (like say cereal) only angle hair pasta and tiny elbow pasta are allowed. No sauces of any kind may touch her lips. except cattots she has NEVER not once touched a veggie and has super radar it cannot be hidden. Cheese when "cold' must be whilte and cut into rectangles any other will not be tollorated. All food except ceral and icecream traditionally eaten with a spoon is out so no soups puddings yogurts apple sauce ect. She will eat crackers and water for weeks at a time nothing else if we let her she will also eat nothing for days (she was diagnoised with infant anexoria as a baby) I really try not to make food an issue. Its just sometimes I feel like no matter what its a huge issue.
:

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Heck, they even make annie's mac n cheese which is organic with no partially hydrogenated oils etc... okay, it's not the healthiest thing on the planet but it's not the *un*healthiest thing either
LOL DD loves the stuff and I'm extra bad I buy the "easy mac equivlent" (in the organic version) and I've totally diluted my self into being convinced its healthy LOL the one good thing I guess is with in her scoop of foods she eats fairly healthy its just getting her to agree to even the stuff she does like.
 

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Well goodness, it sounds frustrating and worrysome for you!! I have no idea what that is like with our dd, so I am sorry I can't offer more.


Perhaps you could go with the things she does eat and work from there? Like protein powder in the mac and cheese shouldn't leave any taste and would help get more protein -- some olive oil or other *healthy* oil in the mac n cheese to add some calories if she is in danger of becoming underweight? If she likes carrots, go with it... you can even puree some of those in with the mac n cheese *sauce* if you think she would eat those. Oranges are pretty healthy too, so that seems positive if she is willing to eat those.

Does she have SID by any chance? Like sensory/textural issues? That may be something worth looking into if you haven't already. Do you think also that she will drink something like pediasure or similar if it tastes *milkshakey* or is she not down with that? I mean I know there is more sugar in there than you would probably like but sometimes ya just have to say *fuggit*... especially since it will get her many vitamins she may be lacking in eating so little.

Honestly I would just let her eat as much of anything she is willing to eat as she wants at this point -- if that means mac n cheese for 3 weeks straight it is better than not eating anything right? I just think the more the issue is focused on, the worse the issue will become know what I mean?

Good luck to you mama
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yea I pretty much let her decide with in reason though there are many times that she rejects the things she once loved
: SHe does have sensory issues and is apraxic shes in therapy for it and its deffiently helped, shes now at a healthy weight lean and tall but no longer underweight so thats great. She nursed for a bit over 3.5 years but self weaned and I'll admit I get more discourgd not having that to fall back on. We've tried the pedicure even things like the carnation breakfasts ect and she wont touch them. SH pretty good about getting in protein she likes chicken cheese milk I but protein enriched pastas ect ans shes pretty good about fruit I wish she'd get in some veggies even her beloved carrots she often chews up but wont swollow (texture thing) but I agree with the no battles thing. Its when she goes throug h the asking for everything eating nothing and wasting it all where I get frustrated.
Deanna
 

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Sorry to crash the Captain Crunchy thread
but I have something to address the "how do you not cringe at the waste" question...

My ds is 18 months and just starting to ask for food by name, and he eats almost *nothing*. Thank god he still nurses so much--like you said about your dd nursing to 3.5... I hope he does that, because I love to know that he's getting something nutritious
.

Anyway, I encounter a lot of waste because I do offer him food, of course--and he hates eating off others' plates, he really likes his own... and likes to ask for specific foods at this point.

Here's what's helped me. It's mean but it works for my own sanity. A *very* overweight relative of mine likes to say (often in response to my not forcing food on my ds) "Wasting food is a sin!! A sin!!" And I (snarkily
) think to myself that forcing yourself to eat more food than your body needs so that you'll be fat and eat tons of food is way more of a waste than throwing away a toddler-sized portion of food daily. Helping ds have a healthy relationship with food is the best thing I can do, food-wasting-wise.

Like I said, it's mean, but it works to keep me from reacting to what ds is or isn't eating. HTH.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
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Here's what's helped me. It's mean but it works for my own sanity. A *very* overweight relative of mine likes to say (often in response to my not forcing food on my ds) "Wasting food is a sin!! A sin!!" And I (snarkily ) think to myself that forcing yourself to eat more food than your body needs so that you'll be fat and eat tons of food is way more of a waste than throwing away a toddler-sized portion of food daily. Helping ds have a healthy relationship with food is the best thing I can do, food-wasting-wise.
First I had to chuckle at the A SIN A SIN thing I could totally hear my MIL voice.
yea I know what you mean and I totally an not bugged an her not finishing something its the not even starting to eat what she asked for thing. or like picking it up squishing it or otherwise defacing it so no one else can have it and never touching it. I'm all for texture play and provide plenty so thats not it. DH tends to be more verbaly objectional than I am I'm kinda numb to it by now.
Today she ate 1 bowl of honey nut cheerios with milk (left about 1/4) 1 plate of Annies Mac N cheese (finished that) and 1/2 a carrot stick thats considered a successful day around here.
 

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Octobermom-- I don't have any ideas. I just wanted to say I'm having a similar prob. at my house. My dd will ask for things and not eat them. She was at zero percentile and going losing weight each month. She really does appear to be in line for developing anorexia as well. This all started because she has reflux. Anyway.....how do I deal with the waste? I just give her toddler sized portions and forget about the waste, because her weight is so much more of a problem. Considering she may not eat more than a two tablespoons of food in a given day, it's not like there's much money going down the drain, if you know what I mean. Sigh. Wish I had a better idea for you, though. Whomever said that children wouldn't starve themselves was just...plain....wrong. And as for the people who say force it? Remind them that you can stuff all the food you want into their mouths, but you can't make them swallow. That should shut them up.

Faith
(Who's just about ready to have her daughter fitted with a feeding tube.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
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Whomever said that children wouldn't starve themselves was just...plain....wrong. And as for the people who say force it? Remind them that you can stuff all the food you want into their mouths, but you can't make them swallow. That should shut them up.
Amen Its frustrating dealing with comments on both extremes. Yes sadly one can actually starve them selfs despite our best efforts, and heck with my DD jaws of life mouth I can't even stuff her mouth (ask me how I know yes bad bad mommy has been down that row also) and like you said I can't make her swollow. Maybe if I carried a switch with me all the time.
: Yea thats a way to develop good habbits.
OT My very congested toddler finially feel asleep on the couch its 11:45 pm so everyone shhh.. and type quietly
..
Anyways as I'm reading and considering I think the frustrating part isn't so much the physical waste like you say its ussually not much anyways its seeing her plain not eat. I probably obssess over it but I have seen what it can lead to. Any idea what its like to hold a 5 month old that falls into low blood sugar induced comas rather than eat. Its heatbreaking.
Sign try to hang in their I soo relate..
 
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