Help! They’ve stopped eating!

stopped eating getting enough nutrients

Sometimes things happen in life to make our challenging eaters eat even less! Maybe they’ve been making great progress but suddenly stopped eating the food you’ve been working on, or maybe they’re dropping food that you rely on to give them some nutrients. Here’s why that could be happening and how to deal with it.

 

They’re bored of the same food everyday

This is a massive problem for those kids who struggle to try new food. They become bored of the same food every day but can’t replace it with anything else so they eat less variety. Eventually parents are stuck with a couple of fruits, vegetables and meats or dinners they can sserve up. Little Bites strategies are perfect for those kids who would love to have a sleepover and eat the same as their friends, are starting to get bored of the same food every day, or are stuck in a rut when it comes to tasting food. If your child has stopped eating certain food groups get in touch to see how Little Ites can help.

Sickness

When kids are sick they go off their food. It is normal that they’ve stopped eating as much as usual but if you’re concerned they’ll get into worse eating habits, try to make sure that the food offered while they’re sick will help them get better, improve their health but will still be eaten or drunk. Relax your expectations about how much they will eat, let them eat when they are hungry but try to have those few healthy foods they will eat – whether that is that 1 vegetable, yoghurt, smoothies, a particular fruit –  pureed, sliced and peeled… however they find it easiest. They aren’t feeling great so make it as easy for them as you can. Just make sure that when they’re feeling better you start up their strategies again and gently work back up to where you were.

Changes

Sometimes we’re super busy at work, we move house, we have a holiday… When there’s something that means we stop working on their diet or the child has a bit of a regression and stopped eating so much due to these changes, that is normal. I tell many people that if there’s a day when you’re stressed and rushed, take a little break to make sure that trying new food doesn’t become a negative experience. It’s got to be something your child grows to enjoy and become motivated by. We’re all about changing attitudes towards food, not force feeding so trying new food needs to be fun and relaxed.

If you need a little break while you move house or write lots of reports at work or are away on holiday that’s absolutely fine, just remember to get back to it as soon as you can because consistency is key. The more you do it, the easier and quicker it will become. Soon your child will be eating a much bigger range of food!  Check out the testimonials to see what changes you can expect.

 

To find out more about Little Bites strategies and how I can help your challenging eater book a free initial consultation here.

double trouble! Sibling Strategies.

One comment I get a lot is “now the others are getting picky too”.

Here’s what I tell those parents:

Your other child is watching the dinnertime hassle. They’re most likely seeing something that’s making them change their eating behaviour. Maybe your challenging eater gets to avoid those things the youngest isn’t sure about, their fear is rubbing off on the youngest as it’s such a big deal, maybe your challenging eater gets bribed to eat, gets a lot of attention for not eating (positive or negative, attention is attention to a child), gets a second chance at dinner  – toast, fruit, nuggets, sandwich…

There are lots of easy ways to turn this around for the other child – and alongside ‘Little Bites’ step by step, easy to follow steps, they can also help motivate your challenging eater.

  • Flip the attention.  Give them heaps of genuine attention for eating with lighthearted reminders “You like this, you ate it at school/when we had… You said it was yummy!”
  • Make it a bit competitive – I don’t mean food fights and a good way to get indigestion! I mean “who’s going to try *food you’re struggling with* first?” Whoever tries the most different foods over the day or week gets to choose movie night, or the activity, or the park to go to…
  • Get them to help plan and prepare dinner once a week and give them a choice from a couple of options of things they’re starting to turn from (or give them free reign of the vegetable aisle!) Maybe they just need presented in a new way (shaped like a face, raw instead of cooked or sticks instead of slices).
  • Have different themed nights every so often – milkshake Monday (veggie or fruit smoothies), rainbow nights, funny face Friday where they see who can make the most interesting picture or face with their food as they serve up (or you  do it and they judge if they’re too young).

For more ideas and resources email [email protected] or book here.  If you’re interested in this, just ask for the sibling strategy when we speak.