Barbara F. Meltz writes the Globe's Child Caring column. She is author of "Put Yourself in Their Shoes, Understanding How Your Children See the World," and a frequent speaker to parent groups. Join her chat on the first and third Monday of the month at noon.
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Monday, February 26, 2007
Picky, picky, picky
Having been blessed with a child who is more willing than his mom to try new food (he'll eat sushi, I won't), it's a surprise to come across a truly picky eater. It's one thing to find kids who only like certain foods. It's something else when a youngster really seems to live on air. One such 3-year-old and his family stayed with us not long ago. I wish I could bottle the look of joy on his mom's face when he decided to try a clementine and declared, "This is my favorite food!" as if clementines were what he had been waiting for all his life. Equally amazing, he didn't change his mind over the course of the few days' visit.
There's a lot of worry for parents of picky eaters who often turn into the food police and won't hesitate to bribe or beg to get a nutritious morsel down a child's throat. OFten that struggle only makes matters worse. If you find yourself turning into one of these parents, Zero to Three has just published a free booklet, "Healthy From the Start," which includes some helpful tips as well as this reminder: It can take 10 to 15 times of seeing a food before it no longer seems new to a child.