Sometimes mealtimes can present problems. Toddlers have their own personalities and want like to make their own choices, even if they aren’t necessarily the right ones. We have some mealtime tips to help ensure that food is a fun time for every one and to try and stop any issues that may arise.
· Plan the mealtimes and keep to the routine as closely as possible. Avoid planning snacks or meals before bedtimes or naps as toddlers can become too tired to eat (this can present a funny photo opportunity but your toddler will only wake up wanting food later on.
· If you stick to three regular mealtimes, breakfast, lunch and dinner, ensure you have snacks to distribute throughout the day. Keep these snacks healthy and consider foods such as fruits, vegetables or salads, yoghurts or small squares of cheese. Avoid providing crisps and chocolates as snacks as it forms bad habits and they have little nutritional value.
· Try and give your toddler water when they are thirsty instead of fruit juices or squash. Too many drinks can also fill up a toddler and put them off eating their meals.
· Present food in fun and entertaining ways. Use biscuit cutters to shape sandwiches and meats and use the vegetables and fruits to complete a funny character or to add scenery.
· Don’t worry about mess. Encourage your child to feed themselves and make it fun. If there are dips or sauces let your child pick up their carrots or broccoli and dip it or even to use the food as a brush to make the rest of the plate look pretty.
· Bring toys to the table to join in the family mealtime. Choose toys that can be easily cleaned such as figurines rather than soft toys.
Do you have any mealtimes tips to share with our Golden Bear readers? Leave us a comment below.
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