Friday, August 3, 2012

Why Won't You Eat???

I feel like I'm saying this to Andrew on a daily basis.  It's not that he doesn't eat anything at all, but he doesn't  eat a variety of foods and he would still eat jars of food happily for every meal if I would give them to him.

What am I doing wrong?

He's 16 months old and still not eating tons of finger foods. Or at least finger foods that are good for him.  He'll eat a hot dog in a minute flat (ok, maybe that's an exaggeration), pops chicken nuggets in his mouth with no problems, shovels in mac n cheese like it's going out of style, and can't get enough of the mini pancakes with peanut butter on them.

Pretty much anything else we put in front of him gets either A.) Mashed into the tray with his little thumbs  B.) Squeezed in his little fists until it is pulp or C.) Picked up and tossed on the floor.  Where it doesn't go is in his mouth. I don't get it - he puts everything in his mouth.  Everything.  Except for food.

This has caused a number of meltdowns on my part, the worst of which was Tuesday evening when I ended up in tears. I'll blame part of that on hormones, though (damn you, CD1!).  I told J that I feel like I'm failing because I can't get him to eat.  He insists that Andrew won't starve himself and he will eat when he's hungry. I fear that he isn't getting the nutrients he needs.

I've done plenty of reading online and have googled everything I can think of to find ideas how I can get him to eat.  I have a feeling this weekend is going to be full of me trying to get him to eat something and him throwing it on the floor.  I'm hoping that I'm wrong and he will surprise me by chowing down on something, but I need to prepare myself for the fact that it probably won't happen that way.

Wish us luck...


  1. awe sweety, we all go through that stage. I know I've been brought to tears countless times over on of my kiddos not eating healthily. I can't give you sanity-saving advice, but just don't give up offering it to him, those squeeze packets of fruits and veggies is saving my sanity (and they are okay), hide hide hide either a squeeze packet or some other veggie/fruit in his "likes" and don't skimp on buying organic "snack" foods he likes and you feel more sane about giving him. Target has a lot of great options! I'll give you some if you need specifics. And...I do agree with your hubby, he'll be okay. xoxo

    1. Thanks hun - he does love the squeeze packets so I know he doesn't hate fruits and veggies. I give him those to make sure I get at least some healthy stuff in him. He'll eat black beans sometimes, but the black bean quesadilla I made for him the other night got tossed. I keep trying to give him different things and sometimes he'll humor me and take a bite, but I feel like he's barely eating anything. I know this won't be the last time I am brought to tears by thinking I'm doing it all wrong.

      Oh, and he turns up his nose at the organic snacks I buy him. It's like he knows that they are better for him. Sigh...

  2. Girl, I think you just need to stop sweating it. He will eat when he is hungry! If you are worried about nutrients then try whole wheat pancakes, veggie dogs and try making some chicken nuggets at home.

    If he is still loving jar food, try making some purees at home and leaving them very textured and see if that doesn't help him transition.

    You are doing a good job momma and your baby boy is getting all that he needs!

  3. I sympathize for sure! But I don't have that issue with mine. I rarely feed him unhealthy foods so he just knows that this is it. Either eat or go hungry! But I do have little tricks. I make things colorful and the best idea I have had yet is icecube trays. You fill them with things like corn, cucumbers, blueberries, cheese, crackers, grilled chicken, etc. The small variety looks appealing. And he won't starve, your hubby is right:)

  4. My daughter refused fruit (except for pouch form) until just recently (she's also 16 months.) She now will only eat fruit at daycare because the other kids are eating it. I keep offering it at home but she usually tosses it.

    She does like steamed veggies but I usually have to put them on her tray before she sees anything else, otherwise she will only eat the chicken nuggets or pasta or whatever else we're having.

    The best advice I've heard about getting kids to eat good is to take the power struggle out of it. Your job is to make good food. His job is to eat it. The end. Amalah describes it best:

    Also be sure to check out the book that she mentions in that post:

  5. Thanks ladies! Our eating adventures are continuing and hopefully we'll make some headway soon.