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Toddler and (not) eating!


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#1 nen-c

Posted 06 May 2012 - 01:51 PM

DS will be 2 this month. He is tiny and has never been a great eater, although seems to be improving. His primary modus operandi for not eating is to take a mouthful of food, chew it for some time (like 30 seconds) and then spit it out. He will do this over and over with the same food (i.e. whatever is on his plate). I know he is not fond of chewing anything that is too solid, the only meat he really ever eats properly is mince, or soft fish, or chicken that is chopped up finely, so I guess this is part of the reason, but it happens with softer things as well. I don't think it is any kind of a sensory issue as he will often do it with food he has been happy to eat the day before. He talks very well, but is yet unable to give me any answers as to why he does this, other than "don't like it"  so I'm asking EB for any ideas about why toddlers might do this???

TIA

#2 VintageEyes

Posted 06 May 2012 - 09:27 PM

My toddler was a terrible eater as well but our issue was getting the food in his mouth in the first place.
We had a lot of success with cheering each time he ate a mouthful. Lots of exaggerated clapping & cheering.
Perhaps something like that might help?

#3 1 for me

Posted 09 May 2012 - 08:05 AM

Hi OP, I have no advice what so ever as my DS, 21mo, does exactly the same as your LO. DS has always been little and has never been keen on eating at all. He is going through the chew and spit it out phase too. Drives me insaine. Like PP said too, just getting something in his mouth is a chore. Sometimes once I get the first mouthful in DS eats ok. Maybe I will try the cheering, clapping thing to see if that works. Good luck and know you are not alone with this frustrating phase.

#4 Frau Farbissina

Posted 09 May 2012 - 08:13 AM

has he got a drink as well? Perhaps offer a sip of water if he's chewing for ages. Might help him to swallow?

#5 LouwithTwo

Posted 09 May 2012 - 08:17 AM

I have a 21 month old that has always been "fussy" eater. Fussy in that one day she'll love something, the next she won't. Or even, she'll love something for MONTHS, then all of a sudden spits it out.

She has ALWAYS done the spitting out technique.

At dinner we have found if there is too much variety on her plate, she will try each thing once, and spit it out.

I'm not sure what your dinners look like but could you try limit it to one thing on the plate at a time, then offer more and more if he eats.


Also the cheering thing - definite win with us... She'll still only eat the one thing, but she'd eat ALL of it. And ask for more. Sometimes we'd have to start off, my DP or I would pick a little of her plate and the other would cheer when it was gone from their mouth.

I think the most important thing is not to stress your toddler out. From what I've read, and what I know from family in child-related professions, is that a lot of food issues with children is about power. Food is one thing that they control (As you can hardly FORCE them to eat.).

So an "excited over-the-top YAY" kind of response to your toddler eating, and a "whatever, I'm going to eat it then" response to not eating could be something to try?

Last suggestion is get you toddler to help try and prepare the food. My toddler would not eat toast. Until I made a big deal about her getting her own bread out, putting it in toaster, helping to get the spread out, etc. then ok, go sit down, quick quick. Then eating a piece with her.


We tried all of these things - and it worked for us. If you're worried talk to you nurse or doc.

Good luck.



#6 Lucygoosey1

Posted 09 May 2012 - 01:50 PM

Oh my DD1 has just started the chew & spit thing.  *sigh*. No advice,  we've progressed from eating nothing to something.  She's 2yrs3mths -10kg. & there's nothing wrong- she's a healthy little girl.  But man she pushes my buttons with the eating thing! (& that itself is the problem!)




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