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How much do you... Rss

Expect your toddlers to eat? Are you a "eat everything thats on your plate" person? A "all your dinner or no dessert" person?

I expect Lachlan to at least make an effort with what is on his plate, and we dont have dessert everynight, maybe once a weeks or something, but he will always get some if he has tried to eat his dinner. I guess im lucky in that he loves vegies, rice etc.. but recently I had my dad over for diner (dont see him that often), and Lachy only ate maybe 2 thirds of his dinner and I still gave him some apple pie, and he was saying that was wrong. I never remeber being raised like this- altho i dont really remember him being around either....

I expect my kids to eat only what they want, so no expectations from me...
Blake eats until he is full, if he doesn't eat anything I just keep in the fridge until he's hungry....
DD eats what she wants, I don't force her to eat anymore than she is willing. We have dessert maybe once a week as well and she always has some (whether she ate her main meal or not).

I was reading a thing about eating disorders and the dinner table. Apparently if you try to force feed your children or try to "bribe" them to eat with dessert or treats they are more likely to have problems later in life (whether weight related or an actual eating disorder). Now this isn't my opinion but what I read so no one jump on me for it.

We try to make meal times about family and fun more than about the food itself - if that makes any sense.

Tash
i dont believe that eating everything on your plate is a healthy attitude. As adults, some nights we may be hungry and eat everything and other nights we may not quite have the same appetite and leave food. Children are the same.
I think forcing them to eat when they don't want to can cause problems down the track.
Mealtimes should be enjoyble and i dont think forcing your child to sit there until their plate is empty would be much fun for anyone.

i can kind of see the no dessert unless you finish your dinner but growing up we never had dessert unless it was a special occasion so i cant really relate to that.
I expect them to eat what I dish up for them. I give them amounts that are subject to what it is, how long since they last ate and what they have eaten during the day. They nearly always eat it all, DD1 has jsut started trying to only eat a small amount but I got sick of her whinging she was hungry later on and using it as an excuse at bedtime. ("Oh, I have to finish my dinner!") Now if she doesn't eat it, I just cover it and reheat it later if she says she is hungry. She gets nothing to eat after it if she doesn't eat it all. Food N.A.Z.I. I am, that's the way it goes in our house.

Wow, can't say the "N word"! lol
Also, this is how I was brought up and I am fine! My friends who only had to eat what they wanted are the most PICKIEST people going! lol
[Edited on 11/08/2008]

3 Gorgeous Girls!

I give my girls portions which are adequate and manageable for them at any given mealtime. I encourage them to eat the sized portion I have put on their plate. If they do not finish it and I think they should have easliy eaten that amount (conidering how much they have eaten throughout the day and how much they normally eat etc) then dessert as such is off the menu but if they are stil hungry then they can have fruit or a one slice sandwich etc. I just withhold sweets. lol not that we have dessert very often....a few times a year.

Same here. I don't and won't force my kids to eat food. I believe attitudes to food start when they are little.

Kids taste buds are different to adults and that is for a reason. Sometimes there are foods (which although are good for us) kids just don't like. Although it might taste palatable to adults, to a kid it may taste very bitter. The point is to stop kids eating poisonous plants. I believe it is important to listen to your kids. Obviously they will try and pull the wool over occasionally, but if generally they are pretty good - but then there are just a couple of vegies they don't like, this could be the reason.

The other thing is, parents often feed their kids junk food, takeaway, sugary drinks, preprocessed foods (packet macaroni and cheese, 2 min noodles etc) some of these may be for a "treat" but often preprocessed makes up a big part of the diet. These foods are high in salt, sugar and various chemicals. By feeding them to a kid, their palate adjusts to eating foods with a certain level of things. Then when you feed fresh food - it tastes bland, boring and uninteresting. No wonder they don't want to eat!! It is the same for adults. If you eat fresh food and eat food that you make from scratch - you can actually taste the chemicals in food and everything else becomes too salty or sweet..... therefore you don't eat crap as a treat, because it tastes like rubbish....

Anyway.....no I think kids deserve to decide if they are full or not....
I don't force Kaili to eat anything she doesn't want. She will eat what she wants when she wants. She will stick pretty much to her 3 meals but will constantly be grazing. If she's had enough of her dinner she won't eat anymore. It's a bit unfair to be having icecream when they can't I've always thought. She will always have a bit of dessert when we do.
I remember as a kid I had to eat everything on my plate or I wouldn't be able to leave the table. I hated it so much.

I expect them to eat what I dish up for them. I give them amounts that are subject to what it is, how long since they last ate and what they have eaten during the day. They nearly always eat it all, DD1 has jsut started trying to only eat a small amount but I got sick of her whinging she was hungry later on and using it as an excuse at bedtime. ("Oh, I have to finish my dinner!") Now if she doesn't eat it, I just cover it and reheat it later if she says she is hungry. She gets nothing to eat after it if she doesn't eat it all. Food N.A.Z.I. I am, that's the way it goes in our house.

Wow, can't say the "N word"! lol
Also, this is how I was brought up and I am fine! My friends who only had to eat what they wanted are the most PICKIEST people going! lol


I am the same

If my kids aren't hungry for the main meal how can they be hungry for anything else. I am not a resturant either so I do one meal for the night meal & if they don't eat it then they go hungry. They learn at an early age to eat

I make things they like & if I try something new they have to have a taste & if they don't like it then they don't eat it again

Tastebuds change every 7 yrs so things they didn't like a few yrs ago I try again & more often than not they will eat it

DD is still little but the way it is in this house even with a 16.5 month old is that if DD tries her dinner and eats half of it she can have desert or something else if she dislikes the dinner. I was always allowed to eat desert without even touching dinner and my parents would buy me mcdonalds if i didn't want what they were eating and i certainly don't want DD to turn out really picky like myself. I don't like the eat everything or no desert policy as DP never eats all his dinner so it's pretty hypocritical and we usually don't have desert straight after dinner.
I saw a sign in the newsagents which I loved

there are two items on tonights menu - take it or leave it!

I serve my kids up fairly small meals, I don;t make them eat everything but if they don't they get nothing else as I figure if your hungry enough to eat sweets your hungry enough to eat the meal.
If they eat all their tea they get a choice of Yogurt or tin fruit or something.
if its something we have never had before I bend the rules they have to have 3 mouthfuls if they still don;t like it they can have a sandwich or yogurt or something.

I don't believe in forcing them to eat but they don't get anything else after if they don't
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