Dietician’s top tip for handling picky eater children


First published on Thursday 14 October 2021
Last modified on Thursday 14 October 2021

Mum of two Kacie Barnes tells parents what they should – and shouldn’t – do if their child makes a fuss at meal times.

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A dietician mum has revealed how to deal with picky eaters – and warned parents what not to do when it comes to food.

Mum of two Kacie Barnes – who vlogs on TikTok under the name Mama Knows Nutrition – often shares food advice with parents.

She’s now told parents what they need to do if their child makes a fuss at mealtimes, urging parents not to give in to their child.

She said:

‘Sometimes when I’ve made dinner my three year old goes “I don’t want that”, and as a dietician who specialises in picky eating, here’s what I do.

‘I say “hmm, OK, you don’t have to eat it.”

‘What I don’t do is give her other options or make a whole big deal about trying to accommodate her because when I do that would further increase picky eating tendencies.

‘If she knows that she just has to say “I don’t want that”, then she can do that every single time for me to get her something else that she likes better, and that helps neither of us because she doesn’t learn to be flexible or try something new and I’m bending over backwards making her favourite things – whenever she asks.

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‘I make sure there’s at least one thing I made at the meal that she likes, and after that, I’m off the hook.’

In another video she tells how too much milk for toddlers can make picky eating worse – because it fills the child up.

She also tells parents what to do if their children don’t like vegetables.

‘Here’s a research-supported tip for you,’ she said.

‘If you serve veggies before a meal as a little appetiser, they’re more likely to eat them that way, so put out some carrots, peppers or whatever before dinner and see what happens.’

The Dinner Winner plate makes meal times fun and encourages fussy children to even eat foods they’re not sure about. See more details here at Amazon.

Is your child a picky eater? Let us know in our chat thread below.

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