Is this expression familiar? What is she trying to tell you?
Eliminate stress around mealtimes with your toddler or preschooler
Most moms come to Kristen’s Yarker of Vitamin K Consulting workshops (or reach out to her for an in-home session) because they’re worried that their toddlers aren’t getting the nutrition they need.
Often their kids would eat a wide variety of foods when they were babies, but then something changed and now they’ll only eat a handful of foods.
Mealtimes become high-stress occasions. Parents are either constantly negotiating or battling with their kids or they’ve given up on the battle and are making their kids the same dishes every night (in addition to the meal for themselves).
Neither strategy feels right to these moms so they contact her to find a better solution.
We asked Kristen a few questions to find out what we can consider now (until we attend her next workshop!)
1. Are there certain tastes or textures that are always challenging for toddlers?
Every child is different. The food that one child won’t eat, will be another child’ s favourite. It’s important to not have a preconceived idea about what your child will or won’t like.
I see so many parents who won’t offer a child a food because they believe that their child won’t like it. Or, they put a food in front of a child and say something along the lines of: “I don’t think that you’ll like this, but give it a try.” Talk about a self-fulfilling prophesy!
2. Why is repetition key?
The more times a child sees a food, and sees you eating it, the more likely she/he is to try it. Don’t give up! But don’t stress about it if it doesn’t happen the first or fifth time.
3. What about preparing foods in different ways?
Yes! Just because your child doesn’t like a food prepared in one way, it doesn’t mean that they won’t like it prepared in a different way.
For example, if your child didn’t like (or didn’t want to try) steamed broccoli, it doesn’t mean that they won’t like it raw, or in a stir-fry, or in a casserole. If broccoli is a food that you eat in your family, continue serving it.
You never know when the magical day will arrive that your child will try (and maybe even like) the food you offer!
If you’re not convinced yet that this workshop is for you, check out what Kathleen, mother of a toddler had to say.
A Mama’s Testimonial
‘I just wanted to email and say thank you! My stress and anxiety surrounding Louise’s eating has gone from a 10 to a 2 in a matter of weeks!
Before attending your workshop mealtimes with my toddler were a nightmare. Throwing food, tears (hers and mine) and frustration! It was at the point where she would only eat boxed noodles, toast and milk. She was rejecting everything, including old favourites and all fruits and vegetables. I was so confused and hurt, and also anxious about her health. She had been such a good eater! I tried to convince her to ‘just take one more bite’ or bribed her with the promise of her favourite foods. I’m not an anxious person or parent – but this was a serious daily stressor!
Your plan is so simple and I don’t want to jinx it – but it worked as if by magic! I told her what was happening and then took on my role as planner, preparer and provider. Without my persistent begging her to eat, Louise tried new foods, ate her meals without tossing them! It is a lot of work but the pay off is huge!
Today at lunch she tried broccoli! She didn’t eat much but she tried it with no fuss! It was so hard not to do a happy dance! And she actually asks for more cucumber! A green vegetable! We still have a long way to go but it’s so much better.
It’s a lot of work with 2 kids but we have had more family dinners, great conversations and quality time together as a result of organized meal planning. ~Kathleen*
So there you have it, mama.
Here’s our next workshop with with Kristen Yarker of Vitamin K Consulting on March 12th 2014.
Nutrition for Kids: Picky Eater Toddler and Preschooler (18 months – 5 years) Wednesday, March 12th 2014.
To register please check out the event listing below and get your tickets today! Space is limited.
*Names have been changed to protect client confidentiality