One stage of parenthood that becomes frustrating is when your babies and toddlers start to throw their foods away. There are plenty of reasons why your toddler does this unwanted behavior. Mainly, the reason is that, your toddlers may not be ready for any solid food yet. Some parents mistook some things that led them into giving solid foods to their toddlers. Below are the signs which are referred to as false signs that are often used by most parents as guidelines or timeline to whether their toddlers are ready for solid food.
- Sudden weight gain. Hearsay is that if a baby suddenly doubles his or her birth weight when they become around four to six months or when the toddler weighs for more than 14 pounds, then it would be time to start solid foods. When this time or scenario occurs, most parents think that it is time for their babies to start solid food which is not right. A smaller baby like a premature one, is susceptible to doubling his or her birth weight at a much earlier age even though his or her system is not yet ready for solid foods. This applies for the 14-pound guideline too. An average baby born with a weight of seven pounds, this baby wil typically have his or her weight doubled by the time he or she ages four to six months. Which leads to the conclusion that the doubling of the birth weight of a toddler or a toddler’s sudden weight gain does not lead to the indication that your baby is ready for solid food. It just so happens that in average, your babies experience weight gain in the same time they tend to be ready for any solid food.
- Slowed weight gain. To ensure that your babies are healthy, daily check ups are a norm. In these check ups, your paediatrician plots your baby’s weight on a chart to see if your toddler is following the expected and normal growth pattern. With many observations, breastfed babies are gaining weight during the first ywo or three months faster compared to those formula fed babies. However, this trend usually slows down. The weight gain is still there for breastfed babies but the rate is much slower especially during the second half of the first year. Formula fed babies on the other hand tend to have more stable rate of their weight gain. Unfortunately, babies who have constant rate on their weight gain progress are more likely to become obese in the next few years. The chart of most paediatricians use are based on formula fed babies. These charts are made bases as to what the normal growth of your toddlers are. Apparently, when these charts of formula fed babies are used and your toddler does not follow its curves, most doctors advise you to srart feeding solid food to your babies even though they are not ready yet. When this happens, tantrums in the dining table is often observed.
- Start of teething. It is a common misconception of people that when their babies are teething, it’s the right time to let your toddlers start eating solid food. However, when you use teething as the basis of whether it is the right time for your toddlers to start eating real food, problems may arise. This is because babies are born different. Some babies start to get teeth early, and some not even later than a year old. So, if you wait for a year later just to start feeding your toddler solid foods, it might be not a good idea. Your toddlers, even without teeth cam chew on few spft solid foods, thus teething is not necessary for them to start consuming those foods.
These are the few signs that misled parents into thinking that their toddlers are ready for any solid food. However, if you already have started giving solid foods to your toddlers, and they throw it away and start having tantrums, you might wanna do these things to avoid or lessen the intensity of the situation.
- One reason your toddler may be throwing his or her food is when you give him or her too much. Reduce the amount of food you are giving to your toddlers. Doing this will have them think that they don’t have enough of things to throw, thus will lessen their chances of doing so.
- Since some babies throw food because they want attention, feed them one-on-one. Of course, as busy parents, you would like to do lot of things while feeding your child. You may want to do the dishes, the laundry, or clean the house but as your baby eats with you hustling in the background, they will do anything to catch your attention which is in this scenario, throw away the foods that are in front of them.
- Another tip is to remain calm. Even if the situation frustrates and angers you, try to keep calm. When you give them the impression that you are calm no matter what they do in the dining table. Some toddlers are having fun when you give them the attention they want when they throw tantrums. You getting mad at them makes them throw more foods. You may be faking your calm attitude at first, but in the long run, you will learn to be more patient. This patience will set a valuable tone for mealtimes in which your toddler feels comfortable especially in exploring new foods and eating until their belly is full.
- Another trick is to have one constant phrase that you say or remind your toddler when it is eating time. For example, your toddler may be sitting in their high chair or baby chair and you are sitting at the table next to them. You give them few amounts of food with a smile on your face and they will look at you in the same manner as they pick up a piece of food in each hand and swiftly throw them away or in the ground in particular. When this happens, using a single phrase like “We keep food in the tray”. Saying negative things like “No throwing of food” won’t help, thus the words which state where the food should go. When the next food distribution happens, watching closely your kid as they attempt to throw again the food and repeating this phrase will definitely help. This trick won’t work without giving your child full attention and without the calmness. Do this trick calmly instead of doing this as a punishment.
- When they eat, teach them the habit of putting unwanted food in a special section in their trays or in their high chairs. When they master this habit, the food throwing episode will definitely lessen.
These are just few of the many things you can do to stop your toddler from throwing away the foods you have given them. This phase of your toddlers and parenthood may be tiring and frustrating, but remember that this stage will eventually pass. Toddler tantrums are not necessarily a sign of huge problem and can be handled with minor tweaks to your daily routine and response to them.