Is my child a picky eater, or a problem feeder?

Picky Eater:

  • Eats a decreased variety of foods, usually around 20 foods
  • Foods lost due to “burn out” (i.e. one too many hot dogs=refusal) are typically incorporated back into the child’s diet after 2 weeks
  • Can tolerate new foods on their plate, will touch or taste a new food even if they aren’t really excited about it
  • Eats at least one food from most food group textures (e.g. crunchy, soft, puree, etc.
  • Will eat a food being exposed to it at least 10 times
  • Sometimes reported as a “picky eater” at pediatric wellness visits

Problem Feeder:

  • Eats a restricted variety of food, usually 20 or fewer foods
  • Will eat food over and over again like a picky eater but once they burn out, they will not incorporate that food back into their diet
  • Crying/screaming/melt-down mode if a new food is on their plate and will not tolerate touching or tasting
  • Refuses entire categories of food textures
  • Will not try a new food after 10 or more exposures
  • Persistently reported as a “picky eater” at pediatric wellness visits