Reality: When parents attempt to control their child's food intake, such as by getting your child to have "3 more bites", "clean their plates", or by restricting dessert until fruits and vegetables are eaten, studies show that children are more likely to:
- Not respond to the "full" signal cues and have more problems with their weight
- Have enhanced preference for high-fat and energy-dense foods as well as a more limited acceptance of a variety of foods
We know children eat when they are hungry and stop when they are full. So, if you're serving a few different vegetables, your child can decide whether to eat them, or not. If they don't eat them, that's okay. There should be another meal or snack scheduled in 2-4 hours.
Read more great ways to keep mealtime struggle-free.