Expanding your child’s diet

  • Involve your child in preparing food. This helps increase their interest and enjoyment of food.
  • Try not to focus on the amount of food consumed or any ‘messy eating’, but rather on increasing the variety of foods and textures that your child will tolerate.
  • Offer a range of different textured foods with high nutritional value e.g. soft or crunchy fruits and vegetables vs. crisps or fast foods.
  • Make sure that new foods are offered in a fun, non-punitive way. Give lots of praise and rewards for even small changes to your child’s tolerance for new foods.
  • Make small changes at first — try adding 1 new element for only 1 meal of the day. Rapid, broad stroke changes may result in food refusal!
  • Orally defensive children often like food at room temperature, but try changing the temperature of the foods you serve slowly over time (cold – luke warm – warm). Different temperatures offer different amounts of sensory stimulation.
  • Try varying the texture of foods offered (liquid – soft – hard – crunchy)
  • Try changing the consistency of foods (smooth -puree – lumpy – shredded solids – soft solids -normal solids)
  • Try to add herbs and spices to your child’s food. This provides more sensory input than plain or bland foods, such as commercially available ready-made foods. This will help sensitise your child’s mouth. …. OR
  • Try to add less herbs and spices to your child’s food. This helps prevent sensory overload.
  • Also try drinks that have some ‘fizz’ – this provides plenty of oral stimulation!

A warm welcome from Sibylle Janert.

I look forward to discussing your concerns.

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