Feeding your kids should be a joyous occasion, but it can definitely lead to arguments, frustration, and head-in-hands moments if your child becomes fussy. Having fussy kids can stem from quite a few different things, but the bottom line is that you need to find ways to give your children the nutrition they need.
Dealing with fussy kids can take a lot of energy and patience, and we’re here to help. Here are some tactics for dealing with fussy children.
Disguise disliked foods in treat form.
When your children don’t like certain foods – commonly, it’s vegetables at which they turn up their noses – it’s time to get creative. If you are concerned for their wellbeing and health, you need to start finding ways to incorporate disliked foods, such as veggies, into their meals.
You can do this by baking low-sugar muffins that contain fruits such as blueberries – perfect for antioxidants! In addition, if your child refuses to eat dairy products that contain essential calcium, you can make yogurt treats, like this baby yogurt bites recipe at mykidslickthebowl.com.
Recognize when it’s time for tough love.
Knowing when to get tough with your kids is very hard. You want to be an empathetic, gentle parent, but at the end of the day, sometimes they need to learn some hard truths. As a parent, only you know your child well enough to know when it’s time for tough love. If your child is refusing most foods and throwing tantrums at the sight of certain things, it’s time to be a little tough.
That being said, there is no use in forcing your child to eat things they don’t like. You can only encourage them, be patient, and occasionally stern if you feel it is necessary. Tough love doesn’t mean being cruel or impatient – it just means being persistent, grounded, and firm.
Leave them to it.
Ultimately, children go through phases. We can all remember a time in our childhoods when we took on a weird phase that we naturally outgrew! If your child has always eaten well and is experiencing a fussy phase, the best thing you can do sometimes is to let them get on with it. You should ensure they are getting the nutrients they need to thrive, but don’t push it too far. You don’t want to create a bad relationship with food if your child associates it with being punished.
Leaving them to it doesn’t mean “they can do what they want!” – it simply means remaining calm and knowing that eventually they will grow up and expand their palette. Children all develop and learn at a different pace, so if yours is struggling with food, try not to worry.
If you are deeply concerned about your child’s eating habits, it’s best to speak with your pediatrician.
Making food for the whole family – that everyone will eat – is no mean feat. Try these parenting tips for fussy children to help your family thrive in a healthy way, both emotionally and physically.