Is your child a fussy eater?
Medikoe Wellness Expert
80 feet road indira nagar, Bengaluru Feb 9, 2017
Are you tired of saying, “My 11-year-old is a picky eater?”. Picky eating can be a troublesome food issue to deal with for parents. It's typical for a child's appetite and preferences to fluctuate (just like they are for adults). It's critical to strike a balance between teaching youngsters to listen to their bodies and explore their tastes while also ensuring that they are exposed to a diverse range of meals and are set up for a healthy relationship with food as they grow older.
Kids need time and space to practise sampling new foods. The idea is to encourage fearless culinary experimentation while avoiding power conflicts and long-running debates about meals and food.
What is the psychology of picky eaters?
They start learning to assert their independence
They begin to self regulate
Their need varies from day to day
Definite food preferences are beginning to be established
How to cope with fussy eaters?
Know what you are expected to do and what your child is expected to do. Only do what is expected of you and let the child do what is expected of him. It's essential to be patient and firm. Try and include the following foods in your extremely picky eater toddler’s diet:
Add vegetables to dals, upma and noodles
Mix greens in chappati dough
Add fruit to cereal
Add oats to dosa, chappati or desserts
Use honey or jaggery instead of sugar
Make one-pot meals like khichdi with vegetables
What to eat
Serve a variety of healthy foods
Set a good example by choosing different healthy foods
Increase the nutritional value of the dish
When to eat
Serve regular meals and healthy snacks
Stick to a routine and discourage snacking any time
Offer water when a child is thirsty between meals
Let your child eat only at meal and snack times
Where to eat
Have your child sit at the table
Make mealtime family time
Parents/caretakers must eat with children
The chair and table should be of the correct height
Allow plenty of time
Do not offer sweets as bribes
Accept mess as a regular part of feeding
Minimize distractions like TV
Your child will decide
If at all he will eat or not eat
How much to eat
What foods to eat from the ones you offer him (so provide plenty of healthy choices)
It is the child's job to feed on his own
Never do this
Force your child to eat
Use food as a reward
Make a separate meal for your child
Lose your cool at the table
Offering new foods
Offer at the beginning of the meal when your child is most hungry
Offer small portions
Praise child for eating even little of the fresh food
Be a good role model by trying fresh foods
Talk about food
How it is made
The taste, colour, texture, smell
From where it comes
Memories related to the food, if any
Offer only one new food at a time
Offer it many times
You may have to offer food almost 10-15 times before a child accepts it. Do not give up. Keep offering the food to the child. Try to change the way it is made or served.
Tip for fussy eater toddler:
Involve children in making meals, ask them to:
stir the batter
lay the table
snap the beans
count the vegetables
Add dry ingredients
Mix the salad vegetables
Make food look attractive
Using cookie cutters to cut out various shapes of sandwiches
Make faces with idli, roti, dosa, sandwich
Decorate food with fresh vegetables
Add beetroot or spinach to dosa/ chapati to make it colourful
Use attractive coloured plates and bowls
If food from one food group is refused, try another from the same food group-
Yellow/orange vegetables instead of GLV
Curd, cheese, paneer instead of milk
Offer praise for eating even little
Have a consistent approach by all family members, each time
Ensure the child has enough physical activity
Remember, if your child is growing well and full of energy, do not worry about how much they are eating. So do not be anxious. Allow your child to choose from the foods you offer. Be a good role model.
A lot of times, Picky Kids Become Picky Adults.
This is because they may have had a negative experience with food, like choking.
In most cases, they grew up with parents who put pressure on eating and made mealtimes stressful.
How do you deal with fussy eating in adulthood?
Don't overwhelm them with a plate full of new foods. Instead, serve familiar favourites along with one new food they're ready to try. Commit to just a few bites. If they don't like the new food, they'll still have something to eat.
It is essential to fix the fussy eating in your child at the earliest. Here are some recipes for your fussy eater:
Oats Pancake Recipe or Oats Chilla
Two tbsp oats powder (grind 100 percent Organic Oatmeal to a fine powder)
One tablespoon of gram flour (besan)
Half grated carrot
Half finely chopped onion
A half teaspoon of turmeric powder
Season with salt to taste
A half teaspoon of coriander powder
black pepper to taste
Add water to make the batter
Sweet Carrot Rice
1. Combine the onions and grated carrots in a mixing bowl.
2. Make a dosa-like batter with the oats powder, grams of flour, and all the masalas.
3. Set aside for 10 minutes to cool.
4. Using ghee, grease a nonstick Tawa.
5. Heat the Tawa thoroughly before pouring a ladleful of batter onto it.
6. Cook on low heat until both sides are golden brown.
7. Transfer to a serving tray and top with tomato ketchup or jam.
You can add any vegetables of your choice.
Two peeled and grated carrots
1 cup rice, soaking for 20 minutes after being cleaned
3/4 cup jaggery or sugar
1/2 inch cinnamon stick
Silver almonds (as per choice)
Silver cashews (as per choice)
One tablespoon ghee
2 cups water
In a kadhai, melt the ghee.
Saute almonds and cashew in it.
Remove the kadhai after lightly browned and set aside.
Add a bit of extra ghee and cinnamon to the same kadhai.
Allow for a minute of cooking time.
Cook until the shredded carrot is soft.
Now pour in the water, and as it begins to boil, add the rice.
Place a lid on top.
When the rice is halfway done, add the sugar.
Give it a good swirl and set aside to cook the rice.
Garnish with roasted almonds and cashews once done.
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