May 30, 2022

Ask Margaret: Why Won't My Kid Eat Dinner?

Help! My kid will only eat the middle of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches every other Thursday! If your kid refuses to eat most foods, you're not alone. Margaret explains why--and how to deal with it.

A listener wrote in with this question:

When does the refusing to eat dinner phase pass? My 2.5 year old rarely eats dinner. I try to hold firm about not making special meals, but she refuses everything. She gets a pretty healthy lunch daily, but I still worry. She gets too much sugar and carbs overall, and not enough veggies and protein. She used to like all sorts of food and now she's fully on kid food like mac and cheese, chicken nuggets, and grilled cheese. How do I make sure she's getting enough healthy food in her diet without driving us both crazy!

Margaret brings in a reassuring "biological imperative" to explain why kids start getting picky about their food as they become toddlers. And while it may seem like what little ones eat is a very big deal, it's not at all unusual for them to live on grilled cheeses for a while.

Here are links to our other episodes that Margaret mentions:

Fresh Take: Amee Severson on Intuitive Eating For Our Families

Your Picky Eater


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