Why won’t my child eat certain foods like fruits, vegetables, meat or milk?
It’s not just your child
It is quite normal for children to become picky or difficult about food. Some become very reluctant to try new foods – this is called neophobia and is thought to have developed as we evolved to protect children from eating things that were unsafe. Others start to reject foods they have eaten before and liked (picky eating). Some children do both!
Why do we need fruits and vegetables?
Diets rich in fruits and vegetables are known to help protect against disease. Fruits are packed with nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, fiber and other substances that are important for health. But no one fruit is better than another, variety is the key. That’s why it’s so important to help your child learn to like lots of different fruits (and vegetables! Read ‘My child won’t eat vegetables’.
Why do we need meat or fish?
Meat and fish are good sources of protein as well as other vitamins and minerals – red meat such as beef or lamb is one of the richest sources of iron, needed for normal brain development in children; and oily fish such as salmon and mackerel are a good source of omega 3 fatty acids. Encourage your child to try all sorts of meat and fish as no one type is better than another, variety is the key. Serve meat or fish once or twice a day, including at least two servings of fish per week, of which one should be oily fish.