Why toddlers refuse food?

At my workplace I am observing many children refusing their food, simply they do not wanna open their mouth or they are pushing away the plate. I am watching them and think how long they will resist that day without food, so we are trying to offer them options, and guess what, they are perfectly fine with plain pasta or a biscuit!

Now, we have to keep in mind that children may refuse a type of food if it’s the first time you give it to them, they need to taste it slowly and a few times to learn to like it, so make sure you are not forcing, pushing the food aggressively in the mouth, most probably they will not like it. Would you like if someone will push the spoon in your mouth, with food you never tried, let’s say…snake meat! yuck!

Also some children may like to be independent and not to be feed, so just let the plate in front of them and observe them without talking, touching their food, try to ”avoid” them. I do have a baby in the nursery that loves to be independent and eat with his own hands.

Toddlers refuse extra food also when they have eaten enough. Do not try to overfeed your toddler,some kids will eat less food than other toddlers of the same age. If your toddler is growing and developing normally then he or she is taking the right quantity of food for his or her own needs!

There is also medical reason why kids refuse to eat. When kids have a well documented medical condition or are visibly sick, it is obvious that their eating can be affected, but sometimes there are more subtle issues. Two of the biggest culprits are acid reflux and constipation. Both of these very common problems for kids can put a halt to eating.

For many “picky eaters”, sensory processing plays a big role in their refusal to eat foods. Simply put, if something feels gross in their mouth or on their hands, they aren’t going to eat it. they may not like certain textures in their mouth, or chew/lick everything else but food, it is a sign that their oral sensory system needs to be looked at.

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