How to feed an independent child

How to feed an independent child

  Autor NN Team Data: 16.04.2008

How to feed an independent child
Somewhere between 12 and 18 months, your obedient and quiet baby becomes a kid that crawls and tries to take control of his activities. When you want to dress him, he decides that pajamas are best suited for a walk in the park. When you call him he runs away laughing at you while you run after him through the house. 

And the hardest moment is the meal. If, some time before, your child ate whatever you gave him, now you might find that he has become cranky. 

Do not let the kitchen become a battleground. Here are some ways to make meals a pleasure for the whole family and help your child develop a healthy attitude towards food. 

Encourage independence 

Let your child feed himself. The food must be anything he wants not something imposed. Cut the food into small pieces: the meat, carrots and potatoes. Children love to dip the food. Put near the toast a little yogurt in which to dip each piece. Encourage him (but do not force him) to try different foods and let him decide what to eat the next meal. 

Accept his habits 

If he likes to eat by hand, let him do it. If he manages to use a spoon or a fork, the better. Do not discourage child's efforts to eat alone. To teach him how to eat correctly, with the spoon, give him a bowl of his favorite food and put it next to a colored spoon with drawings. 

Accept his order 

Let your child eat food in any order he wants. If he likes to eat dessert first and then the vegetables, let him do it. Many children choose raisins from the cereal first, but that does not mean they do not eat the cereal at the end. Children see if you pay more attention to sweets and are very influenced by the example you give them. Show him that you like vegetables and cereals as much as cookies or fruit. 

Do not complicate 

If you are struggling hard to prepare a special dinner, it is possible that your little one refuses it. Children's tastes change from day to day and you will be frustrated and disappointed every time he refuses to eat your special dinner. Do not make your child feel guilty if he just does not like what you prepared. Give him a plate of rice or toast with jam and let the rest of the family enjoy what you have prepared. 

Children should not be starved 

Many parents worry when their children refuse to eat. Pediatricians believe that this is not a concern. Your child will eat when hungry, and if he skips a meal once in a while it does not mean he becomes malnourished. Keep the child at the table with the rest of the family, even if he did not want to eat. Soon he will be craving and will give up his decision. Do not make much of that he does not want to taste the food. If he sees that it is important to you he will be even more firm in his position. 

Limit snacks 

Your child will not eat if he spends all day with small snacks. Establish a morning and an afternoon snack, which must be fruit, cheese and crackers. Avoid very salty and sweet snacks, and when he is thirsty give him water, because milk and juice fill his stomach. 

Do not mix food with discipline 

Children constantly test their limits. Do not use food as a reward, punishment or bribery, because that will create an unhealthy relationship with food. Sweets are not related to child behavior, they simply are on the menu some days and not in others. 

Read the English version of this article: How to feed an independent child