Eating problems in children are common. Here are
tips for good eating habits in kids and balanced diet for young
Eating Problems in Children
Parents often face many challenges while trying to make their child
have a balanced diet. Child may not want to eat or insist for a
particular snack until he is full and then refuse to eat lunch or
dinner with the family. The child may not want to wait until mealtime
to eat and you may find it difficult to manage to have a family dinner
with the parents and children enjoying a happy meal together. There
are so many things that can be frustrating. Here are some tips that
might help you in handling some of these eating problems more
- Avoid family bickering and arguments during mealtimes and keep it
- Children may take time to learn proper table manners and
etiquettes. So, be patient.
- Children who don't eat or don't eat enough at mealtime,
should be offered nutritious snacks, after one or two hours such as
fresh fruits, vegetables or whole-grain crackers. If the child
refuses to have snacks too, he may be willing to eat more at next
mealtime. Offering a variety from time to time will make sure that
your child doesn't suffer from malnutrition.
- Do not let the child play with toys, read books or watch TV while
having their meals.
- Do not threaten, force or bribe your child to eat and do not
punish him for not eating. Simply accept his refusal and do not seem
to be upset about his refusal. Your child may just be refusing to
eat to seek attention and your disapproval may just prompt him to
repeat his actions.
- Having meal at a fixed time each day is a good habit for children
and teaches them to be disciplined and punctual too. It may also be
helpful if the family members have fixed seats at the table.
- If a child insists for the snack, you can give him a larger
portion, if the mealtime is still far off. However, if the family
meals are within an hour, just give him a small portion of the snack
and tell him that family will soon be having lunch or dinner.
- It is better to tell a child that it will soon be the time to
have family lunch or dinner 10 to 15 minutes before mealtime, so
that they can settle down well and ward off the tiredness or
excitement from their activities enough to have their meals at
- Tell the child that it is good to eat together and that he should
stay at the table until everyone has eaten.