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Thread: Any advice for 12-month old who doesn't eat?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    11

    Default Any advice for 12-month old who doesn't eat?

    My 12-month old (almost 13) won't eat any solids! Between him and a very finicky 3-yr old, I'm going out of my mind. I'm still pumping and giving him formula (about 15-20oz a day), because he won't eat anything. He throws everything I put in front of him to the floor. The only things he will eat are chips (e.g. veggie chips), rice crackers, and he will try to eat rice (of course, most of it ends up all over him). Ocassionally, he'll munch a little on apple, and sometimes I get shove some little pieces of meat in his mouth (if my hand is fast enough), but most of the time I just shuts his mouth as soon as he seems me try to put something in. Same goes if I try to spoon feed him. It has been like this since we introduced solids around 7 months. I keep hoping he will magically start eating one day, but nothing yet
    Any ideas, advice from anyone that has gone through similar situation?
    Doctor is concerned about his weight, as he hasn't gained any in the past 6 months

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: Any advice for 12-month old who doesn't eat?

    I understand how you are feeling, i'm going through the same thing with my 11 month old, he won't eat, he's still breastfeeding but just like your son, he will just either throw it on the floor or spit it out. The only things he will eat are, porridge, bananas, bread/toast. Won't touch anything else.
    I don't have any advice but I can sympathise. Lets hope our little ones just eventually get the idea, its very disheartening x

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    21,368

    Default Re: Any advice for 12-month old who doesn't eat?

    Both your kids are really young. They're not eating much because they don't really need that much yet. Until around a year, breastmilk or formula alone can meet all a baby's nutritional needs, and many babies don't start consuming a lot of solids until around the middle of their second years because the transition from needing only breastmilk/formula to needing a lot of solids is a gradual one. Neither of my kids ate more than a few teaspoon-fuls of solids per day until they were around 14-15 months.

    Many kids hate being spoon-fed, and prefer to feed themselves. This is a messy process, but it's also a ton of fun and a great learning opportunity for the baby. So if you can embrace the mess, do.

    When it comes to what foods a young toddler will eat, you have to be patient. A lot of kids become very picky around this age. It's actually a smart, self-protective strategy, because if toddlers were as indiscriminate as babies about what goes into their mouths, they'd poison themselves in a hurry! Just keep offering healthy choices and model good eating habits- if the baby sees you eating and enjoying healthy solids, she/he will be more likely to try them. And don't fall into the trap of serving only the foods you know baby likes- that just reinforces picky behaviors, and often leads to a kid eating a lot more junk than he/she should.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    5,924

    Default Re: Any advice for 12-month old who doesn't eat?

    I strongly suggest the boook My Child Won't Eat by Carlos Gonzalez. Your child's eating 'habits' are within the range of normal. I understand you feel desperate to get food into your baby, but pushing the issue as you are doing may worsen any eating issues that may exist.

    If your child has not gained anything between 6 months to 12 months, it is NOT because he will not eat solids. Normally these months of solid 'introduction' the childs nutrition should be coming exclusively or very nearly so from breast milk, and if there is not enough breastmilk, from formula as well. If baby is getting enough breastmilk and formula and literally not gaining at all, underlying causes for such poor weight gain should be explored by your doctor.

    Has all growth stopped or just weight gain? Is your child healthy otherwise, meeting milestones?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    11

    Default Re: Any advice for 12-month old who doesn't eat?

    He seems to be developing normally. His height is good, about 50 percentile. But his weight is below 10 percentile. He is cruising and starting to sign and respond to verbal commands.
    Thanks. I will look into that book. Is it similar to Ellyn Satter's Child of Mine? It seems almost pointless to offer him foods that I know he will either not touch or just throw away, but i will persist! I still offer him plenty breastmilk and formula in a bottle. I think he only associates the bottle with satisfying his hunger, because when he's hungry, he gets very excited when he sees the bottle. Not sure how to change that association so he knows that food will fill him up too.
    Thanks for the advice though, will keep trying and hope he will eventually enjoy eating.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
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    5,924

    Default Re: Any advice for 12-month old who doesn't eat?

    It is not as if 12 months is some magic number where kids should be eating solids exclusively or even mostly. Biologically breastmilk is an important source of nutrition for at least 2 years and probably beyond, so some kids are just not ‘made’ to be eating lots of food at this point. Personally I would not be worried about how baby responds to solids at all. I WOULD be worried if my child did not gain any weight from 6-12 months. However, even that may be ok, assuming his other growth has been normal. Where baby is on the charts (50% vs.10% or whatever) is much less important than how baby’s personal rate of gain has been. Charts and what they mean and do not mean is explained at length in My Child Won’t Eat.

    I am not familiar with Child of Mine but a quick glance at the description on Amazon suggests the authors share the same basic philosophy-that a healthy child WILL eat what they need, without coercion or forcing, just not always exactly what and how much and when parents/doctors etc. expect. My Child Won’t Eat is much more recent (get the new edition) and so includes information on more recent research and the 2006 WHO charts.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    112

    Default Re: Any advice for 12-month old who doesn't eat?

    Since he seems to enjoy the crunchy texture of chips and rice crackers, how about trying freeze dried fruit? It's also sorta crunchy, but dissolves pretty easily in the mouth. The chips and rice crackers might also be salty, so maybe try offering more strongly flavored foods? Some fresh fruits could also be appealing, like watermelon. You could put it in a mesh feeder so it seems more like a toy and less like a food.

    I was a low supply mom with my first, and when we did solids, we'd feed solids first and then follow with breastmilk, and then formula if needed. Maybe doing something similar will link the solids and bottles = food = full tummy.
    Mom to:
    Johann, Born June 21, 2009 8lb, 7oz & 22in nursed until 2 years old
    Lydia, Born March 30, 2013 9lb, 5.6oz & 21.75 inches

    Nursed through hypothryroidism, IGT, and a SNS both times around

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