|When a Child:
||A Parent or Caregiver Should:
|Wants to eat the same food over and over again
||If the food is a healthy food, allow the child to indulge. However, continue to offer other foods at each meal.
|Refuses to eat what is served
||Don't become a short-order cook. Prepare your usual meal with 1 or 2 simple, additional foods that your child can choose—bread, rolls, fruit, cheese, or corn. You decide what to serve, and allow your child to decide how much to eat. Don't worry—your child will not starve if he or she misses a couple of meals.
|Watches TV during meals
||Turn of the TV during meals, and "entertain" with family conversation and soft background music. Mealtime is a wonderful time for a family to connect and is better for overall health.
|Refuses to try new foods
||Don't force a child to try foods. Serve new foods along with familiar foods. Encourage your child to try one bite. If he or she refuses, don't give up. Continue to reintroduce the new food at other meals. It can take seeing the food on the plate many times before a child will try it.
|Whines or complains about the meal
||Encourage good table manners. If your child refuses to eat and continues to whine/complain, ask the child to leave the table until the meal is over.
|Will only eat "white" colored foods or gets upset if foods touch each other on the plate
||Do not focus on the "new habit." Instead, provide a sectioned plate to keep foods separate, and offer enough variety on the table so the child has some choice.