It is important to remember that most toddlers go through a stage where they refuse to eat more than one or two foods. Many go through several stages like this, through out childhood!
Also remember that when offering a new food, you may have to get the child to taste it up to 15 times before they develop a desire to actually consume it.
The important thing with a child this young is to offer CHOICES!!
My son is 17 months old, and will eat mostly anything....the main reason being that we offer plenty of healthy choices and keep unhealthy foods out of the house. Fill the bottom shelf of your fridge, at her eye level, with yogurt, fruit cups, applesauce, etc. Buy the yogurt with cartoon characters if you must. And applesauce doesn't have to be bland! We just bought the Berry mixture, with rasberry, strawberry, etc in it. They also make Strawberry Banana, Green Apple, Fruit Punch, tons of different flavors, and there are atleast 10 varieties of fruit cups out there. Try the ones with pears/pineapple/peaches in jello. Jello has no fat or calories, and if it gets her to eat some fruit, who cares!
At breakfast, lunch, and dinner, offer plenty of choices and just let her eat what she wants. Don't argue with her, or make a big deal about it, or it will become a power struggle, and believe me, she'll win.
Make her a plate, on it, put some ravioli, a couple of veggies, and a dinner roll. Put whatever you're having for dinner on there, and THEN add something you know she'll eat, like the ravioli or mac and cheese. Then just give her a spoon and let her have at it. Eventually, she'll eat. A tip though....if she eats all the ravioli/mac and cheese/etc, she needs to eat ONE bite of everything else before she gets more of that favorite food.
Also, give her a multi-vitamin, to be sure she's getting all her nutrients. Equate (Wal-mart's Brand) makes the only one with calcium and iron!!
In addition, remove sodas and such from the fridge, and in the front, where she can see, put Juice, Milk, and Decaffeinated Tea. Let her pick which one she wants. To solve the chocolate milk crisis that most parents have, use Ovaltine. It has lots of vitamins and minerals and most kids love it.
I know this may not be exactly what you were looking for, but I taught day care for 3 years and this is what works.
Also, please remember that most kid friendly foods are made these days with added vitamins. Spaghettios offer a full serving of vegetables and are fortified with Calcium. Kraft Mac and Cheese has lots of calcium, too. Just because it's "Kid" food doesn't mean it isn't healthy. Just try to look for the things she likes, but with added vitamins and minerals, you may have to buy different brands, but she probably won't even notice.
Also, Nutripals are great. The little milk shakes and cereal bars taste GREAT, even from an adult perspective, and they're good for your daughter.
I promise, this, like all other crisis, will pass.
· 1 decade ago