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My son is 10.5 months old. Recently he has started refusing to eat baby food that is pureed or mashed. He will only eat a small amount. He seems more interested in eating table food or finger foods. So I have started to give him some more tables foods. However, it seems he is eating so much less than when he was eating baby purred food. I was concerned that he was not getting enough to eat.

I was recently reading though the book Super Baby Food and the book states that at one year old your child’s appetite will decrease. The author writes, “Your toddler’s growth slows at about the time of her first birthday. Whereas she probably tripled her birth weight during her first year, she will gain only between 3 and 7 pounds during her second. The small weight gain during toddlerhood will produce changes in muscle mass and in shape of the body, making your toddler look more like a child than a baby (p.116).” I also found an article on the Internet that address the decrease in appetite babies experience near their first birthday. I think that if you are struggling with knowing if your son or daughter is eating enough, you should read this article- http://www.med.umich.edu/1libr/pa/pa_bappetit_hhg.htm

I found a great website that discusses exactly how much a toddler should eat and the portion size. I found this website very helpful! http://www.wholesometoddlerfood.com/Toddlers.htm

The Finger Food that my son will currently eat:

Veggies: diced red pepper, sweet potato, yellow squash, carrot (with cinnamon sprinkled on it), zucchini

Dairy: diced cheese (all kinds)

Fruit: diced apple (baked), pear, banana, papaya

Grains: Gerber Puffs, Cheerios, pasta, rice balls (over cooked rice rolled into balls with fruit, veggies, or chicken in them)

Meat (Protein): diced chicken

Milk (Formula): 22-24 oz (4 servings a day)

**  I usually roll the fruit and some veggies in powered oatmeal to keep it from being to slippery for my son to pick up on his own

I plan on adding more more finger foods to my son’s menu choices, but for now the foods that I have listed are good stand bys that I know he will eat.

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What is a toddler? A toddler is a child usually between the ages between 1-3, but this phase could begin as early as 8 months old. This is a period when they start to become more mobile, usually crawling, walking, and cruising about. The feeding demands become quite different during this time period, requiring more nutrition from food and less from  breast milk or formula. You should also be gradually increasing the consistency of the baby food and making it more chunky so they can learn to mash with their gums. More “table food” or “finger food” should also be offered starting between the ages of 8-10 months. If you are concerned that your child is not eating enough, read my blog post entitled:Minimal Daily Diet for Toddlers or  Is My Baby & Toddler Eating Enough?

I have been struggling to figure out what is best to feed my son. I have stumbled across a good suggested feeding menu for toddlers in the book Secrets of a Baby Whisperer for Toddlers. The only thing that I am going to alter from the menu is the Juice. I want my son to learn how to drink his milk from a sippy cup before I introduce Juice again. I highly recommend that you wait until you child is drinking milk from a sippy cup until you offer juice. Instead of Juice you can offer more milk or water in a sippy cup.

Breakfast

  • 1/4 – 1/2 cup cereal
  • 1/4 – 1/2 fruit
  • 4-6 ounces either formula or breast milk (See below about introducing whole milk)

Morning Snack

  • 2-4 ounces fruit juice
  • cooked vegetables or cheese

Lunch

  • 1/4- 1/2 cup  cottage cheese
  • 1/4 – 1/2 cup yellow or orange vegetable
  • 4-6 ounces either formula or breast milk (See below about introducing whole milk)

Afternoon Snack

  • 2-4 ounces juice
  • 4 crackers with cheese

Dinner

  • 1/4 cup poultry or meat
  • 1/4- 1/2 cup green vegetables
  • 1/4 cup noddles, pasta, rice, potatoes
  • 1/4 cup fruit
  • 4-6 ounces either formula or breast milk (See below about introducing whole milk)

Before Bed

  • 4-8 ounces either formula or breast milk (See below about introducing whole milk)

Introducing Whole Milk ” Between a year and 18 months, whether your child has been on formula or breast milk, introduce whole milk. Toddlers should have at least 24 ounces a day for vitamins, iron, and calcium. Start with one bottle a day for the first three days, two bottles for the next three, and finally, three bottles a day. Cheese, yogurt, and ice cream can substitute for whole milk. Common allergic reactions include excessive mucus, diarrhea, dark circles under the eyes. If your child is allergic or if you want to give soy milk, talk to a nutritionist or to your pediatrician.” p. 118 Secrets of a Baby Whisperer for Toddlers

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