Maya wiped the mashed banana off her forehead for the umpteenth time, sighed, grabbed a flannel, and moved to the ginormous task again - feeding her 2year old. Many have been there, where it felt easier to run a marathon than feed your moody toddler. However, sometimes it’s the simple things that work magic. Understanding what is making your child fussy and handling it in a calm and gradual manner is important.
A rule to remember is that children thrive in a routine; have a set time for meals that kids can look forward to and be prepared for.
Experimenting with different foods and making them colorful helps. However, any new food you introduce to a child should be a routine for a week or two before introducing another. This will help isolate and rule out food related allergies.
The best way to teach children is by example; have your meals with children in a family setting. This will encourage and teach your child to follow a similar pattern.
Discourage the use of screen during mealtimes; instead give your child a colorful book or a favorite toy during meals. Encourage pretend play and involve yourself. It helps children listen to their own body while eating and reduces risks of choking – the child will become more aware of their foods.
Lastly, depending on age, discourage snacking between meals. Allow them to build appetite for food and look forward to mealtimes as a fun time together with family.