Dinner Table Showdown: Hunger Games with Picky Eaters

Jun 23, 2012 by

Beth, mom of an eight-year-old and a six-year-old, wrote me with the suggestion that maybe moms of picky kids should simply offer them a “healthy” alternative, like pasta, whenever they don’t want what’s served. Good idea, right?

“I don’t want them to have to eat things they seriously don’t care for,” she said, noting that her kids don’t have medical, developmental or sensory processing issues or other such real problems. They just aren’t crazy about certain textures. Or probably, they just would rather have pasta than what’s served sometimes.

Thus far, I agree that no one should have to eat anything against his will.

“That being said,” Beth admits, “it upsets me that I have to make separate meals for them. It means we eat at different times and eat different things. 

read more

How to deal with fussy grownups: Reader Q&A

Jul 10, 2011 by

A reader from Texas had this question for us:

So how do you feel about grownups who come to your house and state that they will not eat any food that is not organic, vegetarian, free range, or fair trade? This happens to be the night you are cooking steaks and nonorganic baked potatoes. Is this any different than the rebellious child, or just an extension of what happens as the rebellious child grows up? Would you cook a special meal for this person, in addition to the food you had already prepared, or would you simply say, “I was not aware that you had food preferences. Had I known, I would have prepared accordingly. However, I am not offended if you decline to join us.”

Sacred Appetite answers:

Miss Dinner Table Manners is shocked and dismayed that grown adults would…

read more

Taking a Detour: One good way to neutralize a kid’s food resistance

Oct 11, 2009 by

ConklinbookDSC_8156 “Yuck! I don’t want any of that!” your little one says when she gets to the table and sees the healthy dish you’ve lovingly prepared. You feel pretty strongly about her eating it. So what comes next?

Which is closest to your reaction?

a) “You have to eat one bite.”

b) “If you eat it all, you can have some dessert.”

c) “If you don’t…

read more

Is Your Child Neophobic? Give Her More New, Not Less

May 5, 2009 by

Arcimboldo2

YOUNG CHILDREN TEND TO BE FEARFUL of new foods, especially when the foods are arranged into the shape of a clown.

Young children tend to be naturally neophobic—afraid of newness—about food, experts now tell us.  But is this neophobia inborn in normal children? Au contraire: children are born naturally wanting to discover and explore.  Infants are ready to put anything and everything in their mouths.

Yet I  have observed that the majority of kids who have come to my house over the years— though not my own kids—have indeed been afraid of not just new foods, but of food in general, including chicken, peas, potatoes,…

read more

Conventional Wisdom Versus the Truth about Why Kids Won’t Eat Their Vegetables

Mar 26, 2009 by

Veggie man “Getting a child to enjoy healthy food is next to impossible, but there is no harm trying,” says a website that talks of “making” kids eat healthy foods by piling food in humorous structures on the plate.

“Most kids will turn up their nose at the sight of anything green,” another web source matter-of-factly warns parents that might not be aware of this “truth.”

Kids are fussy. They‘re hard to please, conventional wisdom tells us. Feeding them is Difficult. It’s A Problem. Kids are born wanting to eat what’s bad for them,…

read more
Page 1 of 212