When it comes to eating, you might find your toddler acting a little fussy at times. There are a few possible reasons for this such as not liking the shape, colour or textures of certain foods. Wanting to be independent is also one of them. Your child is new to eating solid foods and may take some time to get used to it. They want everything to be familiar whether it’s sleep or play time. But when it comes to food they can be highly unpredictable. The good part is that they tend to get less picky as they grow older.
What you eat has a great influence on the child so it’s easy for you to set an example in front of her by eating the kind of food you would like her to eat. They develop a judgement of what’s safe and healthy by watching what you eat. It’s normal for toddlers to be fussy eaters or refuse new foods and this surfaces around the age of 1 year once they start to feed themselves. This could be possible because of the change in nutrition requirements as the growth rate in children is very fast in their first year and not as fast in their second year. They are also learning a lot of new skills like walking, talking, running, becoming more independent and learning to make choices on their own.
During such a period of change children often look for consistency as much as possible, including sticking to the same food. Hence, they create a fuss when it comes to trying new foods. Research has shown that the food preferences of parents are linked to those of their children so you should make sure to eat a healthy range of foods. Also, if you tend to be a picky eater it’s quite possible that your child will follow in your footsteps so it is best to avoid showing disinterest while trying new things. Letting your little one help you in preparing the meal can increase her interest in eating that particular food since she will have a hand in creating it. One should try to support the child’s independence when it comes to food. By giving in to a few demands and preferences, you will let your child feel a little more in control of her life. Instead of forcing the child to eat one thing, you could give her a choice between two or three healthy food items. One other thing you can do is try to make the food look more attractive by arranging it according to different colours, shapes and sizes.
Including one thing in the meal that your toddler is fond of can make a huge difference. But be sure that you don’t start making deals with your child when it comes to food. This can make the child accustomed to getting rewards for every little thing that you ask her to do. Try not to serve very sugary or fatty foods as an alternative for snacks because your child could completely stop having healthy foods. Encourage imaginative names for different types of fruits and vegetables which can infuse an interest in the child for them.
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