Childhood Diseases

Question
Posted by: Annie | 2007/05/16

Q.

Baby refusing to eat dinner

Hi there. My baby is almost a year old. I've breastfed her until 7 months and started with solids on 6 months. At this stage she eats/drinks 150ml formula early in the morning, breakfast with 150ml formula, fruit mid-morning, lunch with 125ml formula, yoghurt and 150 ml formula in the mid-afternoon and dinner with 200ml formula before she goes to bed. However, a few weeks ago she has started refusing to eat dinner. (Dinner time is around 5:30.) She eats only a few teaspoonsful and then refuses her food and only drinks her milk. Sometimes it seems that she's too tired to eat and it's easier just to drink milk. I can't move her dinner time earlier, as I only get home by 5:15. What worries me is that she eats all her protein in the evenings - the school only gives veggies for lunch, so if she refuses to eat, she doesn't get any protein. It's not that she doesn't like the food - over weekends I give the same food for lunch and she eats it with great enthusiasm. (All her meals are home-cooked - she eats fish, chicken and mince with fresh veggies and starch, mashed together.) To ensure that she gets enough nutrition, I sometimes give her some extra milk before bedtime, but I know that she should be eating a lot more and drinking less milk by now. Should I just leave her if she doesn't want to eat solids in the evening and give her more milk, or should I force her to eat? She's very healthy otherwise and her weight, length and development is normal. Thank you!

Expert's Reply

A.

Paediatrician

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2
user comments

C.

Posted by: Racoon | 2007/05/17

Your LO is most likely drinking too much formula. She needs only about 500 ml a day (up to 700 ml max). The problem with too much milk is that it can lead to iron deficiency after 1 year old. It also dampens the LOs appetite. You can rather exchange 2 of her bottles for rooibos tea or very dilute juice. It will help her to eat a bit better.

Reply to Racoon
Posted by: wow | 2007/05/16

Hi Annie ,

My LO is going through a similar stage. He is teething and I contribute it to that. When i allow him to feed himself though , he gets more food in his system! Perhaps she is trying to assert herself? Just a thought!

Reply to wow

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