Hudson Valley Parent

HVP April 2015

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10 Hudson Valley Parent ■ April 2015 Picky no more! Squelch the food squabbles at every age By MALIA JACOBSON H e's such a great eater!" bright-eyed new parents gush as they beam at their bouncing newborn. Fast-forward several years, and the one-time "great eater" shuns vegetables, milk, and anything resembling protein, choosing instead to subsist on a diet of goldfish crackers and juice. Sound anything like your child? If so, you're not alone — most young children are somewhat picky about food, says pediatric nutrition specialist and registered dietitian Allison Lachowitz. But you don't have to turn into a short-order chef to please your picky child. Read on for age-by-age tips on helping a picky eater expand her palate. PRESCHOOL YEARS 1-5: The Veggie wars According to Linda Piette, author of "Just Two More Bites! Helping Picky Eaters Say Yes to Food," the toddler and preschooler years are a prime time for picky eating habits to surface: tots and young children are naturally inclined to test limits. In cases of extreme pickiness, she encourages parents to consider having a child evaluated for underlying causes like swallowing difficulties, digestion problems, or food aller- gies, which can impact a child's willingness to eat. For otherwise healthy children who simply prefer pasta to vegeta- bles, Lachowitz tells parents to tone down the veggie-pressure. "

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