Like every other new mom, I bragged about how my baby ate everything–about how he had such a sophisticated palette, “He eats kale, and quinoa is his favorite!”
Then just a few months before his third birthday Grey decided to stop eating. Yep, sometimes altogether and sometimes he only eats carbs, cheese, and fruit.
At first, we were a bit worried. Then we did the Googling (as we do) and found out that this is normal. There are so many reasons toddlers heading into the preschool years suddenly stop eating like a little foodie and start eating, well, like a kid.
- They are starting to realize they are their very own person. With that comes the realization that they don’t have to eat what you set in front of them.
- Along with their new found independence, toddlers are taking this opportunity to explore the world in new and different ways. Often that seems more exciting than sitting down and eating with the ‘rents #snoozefest.
- Maybe they really don’t like what you are serving them. This one might be hard to swallow ;).
- Toddlers’ activities vary dramatically from day-to-day. A day spent relaxing around the house doesn’t require as much nutritional energy as running around at the park for an hour or two.
- Just like your toddler loves to watch the same episode of PJ Masks over and over, toddlers tend to get a little obsessive about a food they really enjoy. I mean, I would eat dark chocolate and fro yo for every meal, if I could.
So what should you do about it?
Most experts suggest giving your child healthy choices at every meal. This will help feed that need for independence while also literally feeding your child.
Make meal time fun. Have your toddler help prepare the meal. Cut his sandwich into shapes. Make a Mickey Mouse pancake with blueberries.
What do we do? We usually put one or two foods we know he likes on the plate along with a couple other things we hope he’ll be tempted to try. Usually those go in the trash. And, sometimes, we let him have cookies or fro yo for dinner, cause you’re only three once!