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  • Always Hungry!

    How long should I let a 14 month old child sit down to eat? Right now, I have a grazer toddler. The food gets everywhere and I can't handle the yuck factor anymore. So I'm ordering one of those expensive feeding chairs.

    Also, what is the deal with kids who are ALWAYS hungry. Kids who are barely a year old who out eat 4 and 5 year olds? I don't understand it. The parents are good providers and nice people. Why are these kids so hungry all the time? The kid is here for 8 hours a day. I feed breakfast, lunch, and three snacks. The last snack is basically an early dinner (whatever I'm making for dinner, the kid gets). And by hungry, I mean sitting in the kitchen wailing for food after eating a full balanced meal with veggies, fruit, protein and bread. I give two or three servings. Then within minutes, the kid is in the kitchen wailing for food. Pointing to the fridge, smacking the oven. It's making my hair turn grey.

  • #2
    A LOT of our infants out-ate our preschoolers! We had a lot of eager eaters, who were always open for a meal or who were chomping at the bit as mealtime approached. But I don’t recall an abundance of kids who only ever wanted to eat all day and couldn’t be distracted. Do they respond at all to redirecting? You are feeding them 5 times in 8-10 hrs. If the meals have protein, fat, and fiber and you really can’t distract them…maybe they need to see the doctor!!

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    • fivestarday
      fivestarday commented
      Editing a comment
      This baby can be distracted by other activities. But she is not happy. If I even drift towards the kitchen to get a rag or something, she is there begging. I am sure to give her protein at every meal. I serve fruits, veggies, whole wheat bread, and meat at every meal. The processed snack foods like chips or cookies are a treat. Maybe she is hungry because she drops so much on the floor and I pick it up and toss it in the trash. Maybe I am just seeing what I want to see and not what's happening. But it certainly feels like this kid never stops eating. I keep a log of what's fed, but maybe I should keep more details. Like, how many chicken nuggets actually were eaten compared to how many hit the floor. I may mention this to dcm. The child is thin for her age.

  • #3
    It is a period of rapid growth. They needs lots of proteins, nutrients and fiber. If they are getting mostly starches, sugars and calories, they will be tantruming and hungry all the time from excessive energy but not enough nutrition to meet their growth needs. Frenetic. Most toddlers deal with this because the foods marketed for them are not food at all.
    Last edited by Cat Herder; 02-26-2022, 07:42 AM.

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    • fivestarday
      fivestarday commented
      Editing a comment
      That's true. The "kid fare" foods are not worth a dime for nutrition. And they are expensive!

  • #4
    Toddlers are notorious for going for days with hardly any food in their system. The younger ones eat so much better.

    I just said goodbye to a 15 month old who is moving. I had to keep them in a low chair with a harness because they would not sit to eat. Keeping the two-year-olds seated is also a big challenge. But some are sitting at 15 months and some are patient at two years. It depends on the kid. Usually, by three, if they aren't willing to sit to eat, it's either because their family doesn't take mealtimes seriously, or because they have some other issues going on.

    Grazing is not allowed here, by state regulation. Whether we are eating indoors or having a picnic outside, children must be seated while eating. Per licensing. When the kids are young, it's an environmental issue; I need to make it hard for them to get up and sprint away with food in their hands. When they are older, give them one reminder, and then "It's too bad that you decided to skip lunch today!" and they have to sit in a side chair without bothering the other kids. I don't have any staff here and so I have to be the one within arm's reach of all of the kids who are dining. The parents let their kids eat on demand and wander all over the house, scattering crumbs everywhere; that's not happening here. I can't make them eat, but I can keep them from eating while wandering.

    I don't think a lot of affluent parents understand that it's actually a good thing for kids to go long enough between meals to know what hunger signals feel like. We may be setting ourselves up for a generation of eating dysfunction by never letting our kids experience their own bodies.
    Last edited by Pestle; 02-26-2022, 01:51 PM.

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    • fivestarday
      fivestarday commented
      Editing a comment
      Exactly! I have some kids who are snackers. They snack all day long. They know now that when they are here, they eat when everyone eats. When they say they are hungry after not eating much during mealtime, I tell them sorry, you've got to wait. They are smart. They are eating more now at mealtimes.

  • #5
    Originally posted by fivestarday View Post
    How long should I let a 14 month old child sit down to eat?
    All my kiddos age 12 months to 5 yrs eat at the same time. I set a timer for 45 minutes and when the bell goes off, the meal is over.
    Snack is 20, sometimes 30 minutes.
    They learn real quick to eat. Part of my role is to prepare them for school.
    Most school’s lunch periods are 30 minutes or less.


    Originally posted by Pestle View Post
    I don't think a lot of affluent parents understand that it's actually a good thing for kids to go long enough between meals to know what hunger signals feel like. We may be setting ourselves up for a generation of eating dysfunction by never letting our kids experience their own bodies.
    I have several of these types of parents. They feed their kids all day long and have no set meal time for them. A couple are similar with sleep. They feel if kiddo is awake, they need to get up. It’s mind boggling to me that they can justify getting up at all hours of the night to eat, play, read or just watch tv until child is ready for sleep again.

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    • fivestarday
      fivestarday commented
      Editing a comment
      I bought a meal chair for the girl so now she is seated when eating. I got smart! I was over the crumbs and done with worrying over the choking hazard of running about with a mouthful of food. Why worry when I can just change the situation?

  • #6
    Originally posted by Blackcat31 View Post
    A couple are similar with sleep. They feel if kiddo is awake, they need to get up. It’s mind boggling to me that they can justify getting up at all hours of the night to eat, play, read or just watch tv until child is ready for sleep again.
    I have several parents like this. I don’t understand it!

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    • #7
      I once had a child who couldn't stop themselves from eating. They had the condition where the brain didn't recognize when the stomach was full. They acted like they were hungry all the time. The regular mealtimes helped them.

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      • Pestle
        Pestle commented
        Editing a comment
        Our first teenage Covid fatality in town was a young woman with that condition. Because she was cognitively impaired, her family couldn't make her understand that going out was dangerous, but because of her condition, she was also at high risk due to obesity. And because she was a legal adult, they couldn't stop her. The special needs day center was closed and so she was getting on the bus and going around town to be with people. It was so sad.

    • #8
      Our first teenage Covid fatality in town was a young woman with that condition. Because she was cognitively impaired, her family couldn't make her understand that going out was dangerous, but because of her condition, she was also at high risk due to obesity. And because she was a legal adult, they couldn't stop her. The special needs day center was closed and so she was getting on the bus and going around town to be with people. It was so sad.
      So sad about that. She probably just wanted to be around people.

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      • #9
        fivestarday What is a meal/feeding chair?

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        • fivestarday
          fivestarday commented
          Editing a comment
          A little seat with a tray and straps. They are made to put on regular sized chairs, but I just have her sit in it on the floor for safety.

        • fivestarday
          fivestarday commented
          Editing a comment
          I was going to get an expensive one. But the regular plastic ones work just fine for me. Much cheaper.

        • Alwaysgreener
          Alwaysgreener commented
          Editing a comment
          fivestarday

          When I google it, the image that came up was the plastic booster seat that straps to the chair that I have 4 of. I have never heard of them being called feeding or meal chairs, just booster seats.
          Last edited by Alwaysgreener; 03-09-2022, 12:22 PM.

      • #10
        Originally posted by Alwaysgreener View Post
        fivestarday What is a meal/feeding chair?
        I have one like this. I consider it more of a short high chair verses a booster seat.
        I don’t put mine on a chair but instead feed baby while high chair is sitting on floor

        Click image for larger version

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        • #11
          That's a nice option. Only thing I would change is lose the fabric. I wish my entire home's furnishings were plastic, honestly. Everything would be so easy to clean! LOL

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          • #12
            Originally posted by Blackcat31 View Post

            I have one like this. I consider it more of a short high chair verses a booster seat.
            I don’t put mine on a chair but instead feed baby while high chair is sitting on floor

            Click image for larger version

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            I had one of those for my dd, the manufacturer called it, space saver high chair, I sold it after I used it for my first daycare baby because of the fabric, having to take that off every day to wash it was a pain. I also had a booster that the seat folded up, but kids were sticking their food (veggies) in the cracks.

            I have 4 of these now. The back folds down and the seat is solid plastic, so no place for food to get stuck. I strap them to the chairs and fold the back down, and snap on the tray when not in use.

            Since they don't make the yellow pages or catalogs like they use to, I got cooshee for my dd and liked it, so I now have 3 of them for the older kids.
            Attached Files

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            • GirlMomma
              GirlMomma commented
              Editing a comment
              I have three by Safety 1st that are similar to the Fisher Price in top pic. Like you said, they’re easy to clean after each meal and they attach to my kitchen chairs. I bring out a little plastic table and chairs for the older kiddos.
              Last edited by GirlMomma; 03-09-2022, 01:50 PM.

          • #13
            I have 2 booster seats as well that I use and have them attached to child sized chairs at my child sized table so everyone except baby eats at table
            Click image for larger version

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