Is your little one fussy when it comes to food?

As just about every parent knows from first hand experience, many children go through various stages of fussy eating. Introducing solids to infants, trying different foods with toddlers and older children, or even finding a favourite is suddenly no longer a favourite can be the cause of much stress to concerned parents. So how do we maintain a pleasant environment at the dinner table and avoid the battle ground? Here are a few ideas;

  • Sit down together at meal times where possible with minimal distractions (TV off); food is a social occasion as much as a nourishing one
  • Involve the littlies with the shopping, you might teach them how to choose ripe fruit
  • Indulge in a little creativity; make a fruit face with plain yoghurt to dip…banana mouth, strawberry nose; sultana eyes or give fun names to nutritious foods. Try Shrek swamp dip with dragon claws (avocado with carrot sticks!)
  • Get them involved in the preparation, you could chop different fruits and let them skewer to make fruit kebabs or try slicing a plateful of salad veg like capsicum, baby spinach, tomato, sweet corn; add a little cheese and lean meat and let them make their own pizzas
  • Play with presentations; try chopping, dicing, grating produce into different shapes and sizes
  • Try a bit of home gardening or for a fun family activity why not take them fruit picking!
  • Offer new foods first, they are more likely to be adventurous with hungry bellies
  • The parent chooses the food but the child decides how much; remember kids bellies are tiny and they often cope better with small frequent snacks rather than fewer, larger meals
  • Avoid offering alternative meals if they don’t’ eat up…kids will usually eat if they are hungry
  • Encourage children to explore new foods by asking that they simply try a taste rather than insisting they finish everything
  • It can be helpful to offer small amounts of food as a huge plate can be overwhelming
  • Take a long, hard, honest look at your pantry….are there too many packaged foods on offer? Most packaged foods are highly processed and contain excessive amounts of fat, salt and/or sugar, don’t allow them to displace more nutritious options. The Australian Dietary Guidelines recommend minimising processed foods to occasional treats

As challenging as it may seem, it’s really important not to stress about fussy eating. In few instances there may be medical or psychological factors at play but as a parent you know your child best…seek professional help if you suspect something is up. For the majority of cases, fussiness sorts itself out over time; the most helpful way to teach your children to eat well is to lead by example. Children mimic the behaviours of their parents and this includes our eating habits. Avoiding the battle ground helps create positive associations with nutritious foods and forms good eating habits for life. An Accredited Practicing Dietitian (APD) can help with strategies to address fussy eating that fit in with your lifestyle. Click here to find an APD near you or contact Andrea at or

Andrea Cruickshank APD AN

Ginger Sport Fun Soccer

Your little one will love playing soccer at childcare, and working parents love it!

We will make this a fun sport for them and an activity that they look forward to coming to each and every week!

Ginger Sport Activities

All the fun, just for one. Just your soccer star and our coach at your place.

Make memories with a party your little one & their friends will love.

Have you ever wanted a Ginger Sport session held at a time and place Just To Suit Your Group?