Denver Parenting Classes | Parent Coaching | Family Therapy

Do I Have a Picky Eater or Does My Child Have Signs of an Eating Disorder?

So many parents worry about their children getting enough to eat, or getting enough variety.   I have had so many parents tell me that they worry that if their child continues to only eat chicken nuggets, mac n’ cheese, cheeseburgers and fries they are not going to grow or be healthy. What I know for sure about children is that every stage of eating is just that, a stage and something in which they will grow out of. If they love mac n’ cheese for now, and only want to eat mac n’ cheese, ok! As long as your child is growing in height and gaining weight, I’m sure your child is doing great, and will eventually learn to love other foods as well. Continue to incorporate and introduce other foods into your meals, and the times of only chicken nuggets, mac n’ cheese, cheeseburgers and fries will soon be a fond memory.

The times that you as a parent may start to worry is when:

  • Your child starts refuses to eat foods they used to love and eat all the time.
  • Your child may start categorizing foods into “good” foods or “bad” foods. This may be particularly alarming when your child may say their favorite food such as pizza is now a bad food.
  • Your child may start saying “that food will make me fat” and will refuse to eat certain foods because of associations they have made with that food.
  • Your child might say that they only want to eat a particular way; such as starting to eat vegetarian when your family has always eaten meat.
  • Your child may start taking longer than all other members of your family to eat a meal. It should not take your child longer than 30 minutes to eat breakfast, lunch or dinner.

These are signs that your child’s relationship with food has changed, and that something more may be going on than your child than just being a picky eater.

Jenny Wegner, MS, MFT
To contact Jenny or to make an appointment:
Phone: 303-834-0190

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