5 Tips for dealing with Picky Eating in your Toddler

5 Tips for dealing with Picky Eating in your Toddler

I don't love referring to kids as "picky eaters" because it can often be used as an excuse or internalized (by our kids) as a permanent state of being. Which, I can assure you, it is not! "Picky eating" is a behavior - and like any other it CAN be changed. It can be addressed and tweaked. Especially if you understand why your little one has such strict standards for what they will and won't eat. 

But knowing that picky eating can be changed, doesn't necessarily make having a picky eater at home any easier. Here are 5 tips you can use to tackle picky eating at home.

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4 Tips for Setting Limits on Meal (and Snack) Time While Stuck at Home

4 Tips for Setting Limits on Meal (and Snack) Time While Stuck at Home

When stuck at home, day in and day out, it can seem like the any time is the right time for food. Boredom, indecision, and actual hunger combined with being in close proximity to the kitchen at all times drives kids (and adults) toward constant grazing turning breakfast, lunch, and dinner into a 24-hour buffet. 

Not only can this be stressful for parents - who feel like their spend all their time preparing food and then cleaning up from it - but free-range grazing is often associated with overeating. 

Setting limits on meal and snack time while stuck at home can help. Here are some ideas for how.

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Three strategies to tackle picky eating in older kids

Three strategies to tackle picky eating in older kids

Your kids are not going to like everything you make for dinner (as much as I would like to believe otherwise), but "I don't like it" doesn't have to be an acceptable reason that your little ones don't eat the meal that you've lovingly prepared.

Being selective about food choice is actually a normal part of a child's development. They are creatures of habit, have developing tastebuds - which are differentially sensitive to flavors than mature tastebuds are - and are pre-wired to avoid certain flavors, like bitter vegetables. 

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What to do when you hear: "I don't like that"

What to do when you hear: "I don't like that"

It is well established in the field of nutrition research that parent’s mealtime(feeding) behaviors influence their children’s eating behaviors; parenting style, modeling of eating behavior, meal frequency, and food exposure (trying new foods) are all associated with child’s mealtime behaviors including fruit and vegetable intake. 

But a recent study wanted to examine the role that parent’s mealtime goals (their desired mealtime outcomes) might play in influencing their feeding behaviors. Why ask this question? Because parents’ mealtime goals – and any potential confli

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The Language of Food

The Language of Food

Imagine if someone handed you a food you were unfamiliar with and said, "Here! It's good. Eat it." Would you? Or would you pause and ask "What does it taste like?"

We use our previous experiences with food to provide context and expectation for our new experiences. Doing this helps us feel more comfortable trying something new. When we know it will taste "crispy and salty with a hint of lemon" or "sweet and creamy" it's easier for us to prepare for that first bite. 

Now imagine that you are your 5 year old who is still exploring the world of food. And language. Someone hands you baked eggplant which, let's be honest, looks a little dodgy, and says "Here's dinner. Eat up. It's good for you." What would your response be?

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"What's for dessert?"

"What's for dessert?"

I get this question a lot. And by 'a lot' I mean A.LOT. I sometimes think that my kids are hummingbirds, interested in subsisting on nothing but sugar. One Saturday morning my husband and I made the mistake of sleeping in, giving the kids permission to watch Finding Dory on Netflix. We came downstairs to find them eating chocolate chips for breakfast. Lesson learned. 

Just last week, after a beautifully prepared, home-cooked warm chicken salad and freshly baked bread the first thing I was asked when everyone sat down at the table was "What's for dessert?"

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Mindfulness in parenting

Mindfulness in parenting

What do you think about when you hear the term “mindfulness”? Do you think of practicing yoga? Maybe spending hours sitting on a pillow, on the floor, in the corner, meditating with your fingers clasped, chanting “OMMMMM”? Okay, so mindfulness has a reputation – but what does mindfulness mean?

The general definition of mindfulness is the nonjudgmental (this is a key word) awareness of the present moment. Mindfulness encourages us to experience life as it is happening, without fear, worrying, or anxiety about what will happen or what has already happened. It does not have to include long periods of meditation – it can be done in just a few minutes each day.

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Strawberry Rhubarb Heavenly Heaven

Strawberry Rhubarb Heavenly Heaven

For this national Strawberry Rhubarb Pie Day, I've collected some of my favorite recipes (pie and non-pie alike) in case you feel like joining me in practicing moderation after dinner tonight. For me, teaching my kids about moderation while eating sometimes looks like giving everyone a serving and then me having another after the kids are tucked quietly in bed :).

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