Some children tend to act up during meal times. However, with a lot of patience and some clever know-how, you can stay in control during meal times.



Overcome distractions

Don’t feed your child in front of the TV, at the playground or while he is busy doing something else. Put your child at the dining table or in a high chair so that he knows it is eating time. If your child eats in a mindless fashion, he will never learn to appreciate the subtle tastes and textures of food. For children with a robust appetite, feeding them in front of distractions can cause them to overeat since they’re not aware of the portions.

Let your child feed himself

Put on a handkerchief to minimise mess, and provide a spoon or fork and let your child eat by himself. If he prefers to eat with hands, let him but make sure his hands are clean. Letting your child explore the eating process will make eating more enjoyable for him. You can help ensure he finishes his food by sitting with him as he feeds himself.

Cook food in a variety of creative ways

Use various ways to cook foods that are difficult to chew to make it easier for your child. The idea is to make chewing and swallowing easier. Soft food makes it more palatable for little mouths. For example, if your child often keeps meat in his mouth without swallowing, try making minced meat balls smaller so they are easier to chew. Or if your child does not like vegetables, you can blend them to use in soups and gravies for his meals.

Control your emotions

Refrain from showing anger and impatience. Do not force your child to eat quickly nor blame him for eating slowly or making a mess. These could have a negative impact and can make him lose interest in eating. If your child does not want to eat anymore, stop the feeding. He will definitely make up for it at his next meal.