Help! My child's not eating anything

What to do when your kid won't eat.

Photo by Jason Lugo/iStock

Q: My four-year-old has hardly eaten anything in about a week. She says her mouth doesn’t hurt, but all I’ve been able to get her to eat is soft food, such as milk, yogurt, crackers and cheese. What’s going on?

A: It’s not unusual for four-year-olds to develop food jags like this one. The worry is that her limited diet probably can’t supply all the nutrition she needs to grow. Rather than make this an issue between you and her, ask her doctor to talk to her about eating and proper nutrition. The doctor may suggest a gradual reintroduction of healthy foods she likes; making a list and checking foods off might help motivate her. The doctor may also monitor her weight and progress around eating. Finally, don’t use her eating to describe her as a bad or good girl; talk about wanting her to grow healthy and strong.

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