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Should I be concerned if my toddler is not eating as much as usual?

Hi everyone,

I have a two-year-old toddler who normally has a pretty big appetite. However, over the past few days, I've noticed that he's not been eating as much as he usually does. He'll pick at his food and take a few bites here and there, but he's not finishing his meals like he usually does.

I'm starting to get a little concerned because I don't want him to lose weight or become malnourished. Should I be worried about this change in his eating habits? Is this normal behavior for a toddler? Is there anything I can do to encourage him to eat more?

Any advice or insight would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance!

All Replies



I can empathize with your concern. I have a 2-year-old son who is also going through a phase where he is not eating as much as he usually does. However, I believe that this is just a normal part of toddlerhood and nothing to worry about too much.

While it can be frustrating when your child is not eating much, what has worked for me is offering a variety of healthy snacks throughout the day to make sure that my son has something to eat. I also try to make meals more fun and engaging by using colorful plates or utensils.

At times I have noticed that my child refuses to eat while seated, so I give him finger foods that he is happy to walk around with and eat at the same time. I also try to make mealtime a family affair where we all sit down and enjoy our meal together - this tends to make my son want to join in too.

And as much as it may seem tempting to bribe with rewards or punishments, I try to avoid this as it can make mealtime seem like a chore.

If you're truly concerned about your child's lack of appetite, it's always best to speak with your pediatrician, but in most cases, children will eventually come back around to their old eating habits.


Hi there,

I completely understand your concern about your toddler's lack of appetite. My son is three years old, and he also goes through phases where he doesn't seem to eat as much as he usually does.

One thing that has worked for us is offering nutrient-dense snacks throughout the day, such as cut-up fruits and vegetables, cheese cubes, or hummus with whole-grain crackers. These snacks not only help him stay full but also help provide him with the vitamins and minerals he needs to grow and develop.

I've also found that it's important to be patient and not pressure my son to eat. When I put too much emphasis on finishing meals, it can make him feel stressed and anxious about eating, and he's less likely to eat. Instead, I try to create a relaxed and positive atmosphere during mealtime, where we chat and have fun.

One more thing that has helped us is to make mealtimes fun by doing things like having "taco night," where we set out various toppings and let him build his own taco, or making fun shapes with his food using cookie cutters.

Finally, if you're still worried about your toddler's eating habits, don't hesitate to reach out to your pediatrician. And remember, this is likely just a phase, and your child will eventually return to their normal eating habits.



I can completely understand your concern. I have a three-year-old daughter who also goes through phases where she doesn't seem to eat as much as she used to.

What I've learned is that it's actually pretty normal for toddlers to have fluctuating appetites. They're growing and developing so quickly that their bodies can't always keep up with the amount of food they need.

One thing that has helped with my daughter is offering her smaller, more frequent meals and snacks throughout the day. I also try to offer her a variety of healthy options that she can choose from.

It's also important to offer plenty of fluids, like water and milk, to ensure your child stays hydrated. And don't forget about vitamins and supplements to fill any gaps in their diet.

Of course, if you notice any significant weight loss or other concerning symptoms, it's always best to consult with your pediatrician. But in most cases, a little pickiness is just a normal part of toddlerhood.


Hi there,

I can understand your worry about your toddler's lack of appetite. I have a 2-year-old daughter and I have experienced similar situations in the past. One thing that has worked for us is offering a variety of colorful and appealing foods, as toddlers are attracted to things that look interesting.

Another approach that has worked for us is to involve our daughter in the meal planning and cooking process. We take her to the grocery store and have her pick out the fruits and vegetables she likes, and then we make a fun activity out of washing and cooking them. She takes pride in her contribution, and is usually more inclined to try new foods when she is involved in the process.

We also try to create a relaxed and fun atmosphere during mealtime by playing soft music or encouraging conversation. We avoid any distractions like electronics or television during mealtime.

Lastly, if your toddler is not interested in a particular food, you can try presenting it in a different way. For example, my daughter is not fond of cooked carrots, but she loves raw carrots. So, you can try offering different forms of the same food items.

Overall, it's important to remember that every child is different and it's natural for toddlers to have ups and downs in their appetite. As long as their growth and development are on track, there's usually nothing to worry about. If you're concerned, don't hesitate to speak with your pediatrician.



I can understand your concern about your toddler not eating as much as usual. I have a 3-year-old daughter who goes through phases where she eats very little, and I have learned there are a few things that could contribute to this behavior.

For instance, it is possible that your child is experiencing a period of teething, which can be quite painful and lead to a reduced appetite. During this time, I try to provide my child with soft and easy-to-chew foods, such as mashed potatoes, yogurts, and smoothies.

Another factor that leads to my child's loss of appetite could be a change in her routine or environment. When this happens, I do my best to ensure the nutritional value of foods I offer her by providing a range of options, including fruits and vegetables.

Moreover, I have found that mealtime distractions such as cartoons or playtime can contribute to a child's disinterest in food. To prevent this from happening, I like to sit down with my child, talk to her about her day, and have some meaningful conversations.

Finally, some healthy choices that my child enjoys may not work so well for other children. So it's important to pay attention to their preferences and adjust accordingly to ensure they are getting the nutrition they need.

Remember, every child is unique, and what works for one may not work for another, so always trust your instincts and listen to your child. If you continue to be concerned, speak with your pediatrician for additional guidance.



I have a 2-year-old son and I definitely understand where you're coming from. I too was concerned when my son stopped eating as much as he used to, but I've learned that all kids go through picky eating phases.

What worked for me was setting a schedule and sticking to it. For example, I serve breakfast around the same time every day, and I try to offer different options in case my son is bored with one particular meal.

I also make sure that my son sits at the table for meals and turn off any distractions like the TV or electronic devices, that way he can focus on his meal.

Lastly, I try not to force him to eat or show frustration when he doesn't finish his food. This can create a stressful environment and make meal times less enjoyable.

Remember, every child is different and their appetites will fluctuate. As long as your toddler is still growing and hitting important milestones, I think you have nothing to worry about. However, if you continue to be concerned, reach out to your pediatrician.


Hi there,

I completely understand your concern. I have a 4-year-old daughter who has always been a picky eater. There have been many times when she just refuses to eat anything, no matter what I try.

One thing that worked for me was involving my daughter in the meal planning and preparation process. I let her choose what she wants to eat (within certain parameters, of course) and let her help me make it. For example, we'll make homemade pizza together and she gets to choose her own toppings.

Another thing that has helped is making meal times fun and interactive. I'll put together a bento box-style lunch with a variety of foods, and she enjoys getting to decide what to eat first. We'll also play games or ask questions while we eat to make mealtime more enjoyable.

Finally, I try to focus on the bigger picture and not stress too much if my daughter doesn't eat as much as I'd like. If she's generally healthy and active, I trust that she's getting what she needs. Of course, if you're truly concerned, definitely talk to your pediatrician.

But in general, I think it's important to remember that picky eating is a normal part of childhood and there are ways to make mealtimes more enjoyable for everyone.

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