12 months and suddenly not interested in food

How, when and why to introduce foods other than breastmilk
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ClOuD_NiNe
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12 months and suddenly not interested in food

Post by ClOuD_NiNe » Wed Aug 08, 2012 9:43 pm

We started DS on BLW at 6 months and since then he has been a very enthusiastic eater... until recently. He is now 12 months and has gotten very picky with his food.

If we had mushy food like yoghurt, porridge, soup, etc. I would load up spoons and hand them to him, and he would eat almost as fast as I could load them! Now if I hand him a loaded spoon he's not interested, won't even have a taste. So I'll tip the food onto his tray and he'll pick some of it up by hand, but he's not eating nearly as much as he used to. Same goes for most other food, although he is still fond of fruit.

Often he's still hungry after a meal and if I offer a bottle of milk soon after (ABM or cows milk, we recently weaned) he'll gobble it down. I don't want to push him to eat food but it's hard not to get frustrated. I was hoping that he'd start to eat more so I could slowly wean him off the bottles but he's gone the opposite way!

He has been sick a few times in the last couple of months (colds, flu and croup!) and his appetite definitely took a hit then, but hasn't really improved even though he is well again.

Has anyone else experienced this? Are we entering the fussy toddler stage?? I'm keen to hear suggestions on how should I approach his meals in future. Just keep offering food and trust that he'll start to eat more when he's ready? I have stopped offering milk before a solid meal now that he is past that magical one year mark, but it doesn't seem to have made a difference to how much he eats :smt102
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Nedsmum
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Post by Nedsmum » Wed Aug 08, 2012 10:12 pm

How much milk does he have (total in 24 hours?)...

As a general rule, you have to trust his appetite. Yes, toddlers do eat differently to babies!

My kids when sick, had poor appetites, and the appetite would increase once they were feeling better...but it was a slow process - a week's illness took at least a week to catch up again and another month before they seemed to be regaining any weight loss.

With the weaning process, depending on how much milk he's having, it will be another period of time of slowly cutting out the bottles, and introducing milk or water from a cup, and the appetite increasing, and him eating more, it's a really big trust thing at that age...

Rather than forcing the solids to decrease the milk, my experience is that it works the other way, you cut the bottles back and then they will be hungry for solid foods. At this stage, it sounds to me like you're in an 'in between' phase - he's not really 'weaned' - you've just substituted bottles for the breastfeeding - now you have to decide how/when to wean him off the bottles....

How often are you offering food/drink? the 'standard' in childcare from what I understand is offering a snack or meal every 2 hours - when my kids were weaned (no bottles) they needed to be offered food *very* regularly, their appetite seemed to double within a month of cutting out the dependence on milk...
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Post by ClOuD_NiNe » Wed Aug 08, 2012 10:31 pm

Nedsmum wrote:How much milk does he have (total in 24 hours?)...


He has anywhere from 700-900ml of ABM or cows milk in 24 hours - quite a lot really.

Nedsmum wrote:My kids when sick, had poor appetites, and the appetite would increase once they were feeling better...but it was a slow process - a week's illness took at least a week to catch up again and another month before they seemed to be regaining any weight loss.


That's interesting to know, thanks!

Nedsmum wrote:How often are you offering food/drink? the 'standard' in childcare from what I understand is offering a snack or meal every 2 hours - when my kids were weaned (no bottles) they needed to be offered food *very* regularly, their appetite seemed to double within a month of cutting out the dependence on milk...


I have pretty much been following the 2 hour rule... I guess it stemmed from when he was bf'ing, he would feed about every 2 hours during the day so I just assumed that's how often he would need food or milk once we stopped bf'ing.

Thanks for your help Nedsmum! I think I might just start with dropping one particular bottle during the day and offer a snack instead followed by milk in a cup and see how he goes with that. If it's a success then I'll look at dropping the rest one by one.
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Post by Nedsmum » Thu Aug 09, 2012 2:53 am

I think you're probably on the right track - 700-900mL is basically his whole dietary allowance in milk - so there's plenty of room there to cut back the milk and increase the variety of other foods... I've heard the target of milk would be 500mL maximum at that age...

Bottles are also not recommended after 12 months, because of the risk of tooth decay, so if you reduce the amount of times you offer bottles, and start practicing more with water in small cup (I'm a fan of using a shot glass or a normal drinking straw cut down to fit the cup, rather than special 'teats' or 'non-drip'....

Just like breastfed babies, often the last bottle to go is the last one of the evening or the first one of the morning, and it's much easier to distract them and give lots of other options through the daytime...
Breastmilk - the ultimate 'brain food'!!!

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Post by 4fun » Thu Aug 09, 2012 12:27 pm

When ds1 was 12 months the mchn asked me if he had gotten picky yet, she said dont be surprised as its very common around that age. Its the first way they can learn to control their environment a bit.
My ds1 did become picky and survived of a few mouthfuls a day for at least 18 months, maybe nearly 2 yrs. he now tries lots of foods and eats almost as much as i do.
DS1 July 2008
DS2 November 2009
DD November 2011
DD2 March 2014

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ClOuD_NiNe
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Post by ClOuD_NiNe » Thu Aug 09, 2012 9:51 pm

Thanks Nedsmum!

And 3B'B, that's interesting what your MCHN said, sounds like a common phase.
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Post by huonsmum » Sat Sep 08, 2012 4:41 pm

This seems to have happened to us too! My enthusiastic eater has become very picky! Trying not to get frustrated! He is wanting lots of breastfeeds what do other people do?
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Post by ClOuD_NiNe » Sat Sep 08, 2012 9:59 pm

Not long after I originally posted this we all got gastro as well which really affected his appetite. Thankfully his appetite is back now... mostly. He is still quite picky and sometimes I have resorted to spoon feeding to encourage him to eat a bit more, it usually works! Having a hard time getting rid of the bottles though, he LOVES his bottles! :roll:
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