Problems with a Picky Eater

by Carrie
(Ann Arbor)

I'm not sure if my son has this condition, but he's now 7 1/2 and for as long as I can remember, will not eat fruits or vegetables, cooked or raw, except french fries and a bit of mashed potatoes.


He won't eat textured grains or breads, legumes, beans, nuts (smooth peanut butter is fine), jam with seeds, soups (either smooth or chunky), carbonated beverages, or even fruit smoothies. If foods that he does like contain any of these things, he spits them out. He actually throws up when he eats something that he doesn't want to eat, and, although my husband thinks he does it on purpose, I do not. Who likes to throw up?

I actually think he's terrified of eating things that will make him throw up, so he won't try anything new. When he does take a taste of something new, it is a microscopic amount, and even if he says it tastes good, we can't get him to eat any kind of substantial amount. With soups and stews, he will dip a tiny corner of his bread and eat the bread. He would have to devour a loaf of bread to get through a small amount of what I really want him to eat.

I am at my wits end. I've tried talking,explaining, bribery, threats, consequences, clearing out the cupboards, and nothing works. I truly believe that he's afraid of throwing up, and feels that he can control this by avoiding certain foods.

He will eat mac & cheese (homemade or boxed, but nothing can be added), quesodillas (cheese only), smooth peanut butter sandwiches on smooth bread, bread and butter, pasta with butter & cheese or cheese sauce only, crackers (no whole grains or texture), junk foods, no-pulp juices, small amounts of meat (although he often wants to know what animal died), milk, chocolate soy milk, ice cream and many sweets (no real fruit or things made with fruit except juice bars).

He craves sweets and chips and would be happy to skip meals and just eat these. Of course I try to limit these junk foods, and try to buy healthier chips, but anything too "weird" and he won't eat it. It's difficult to feed him a well-rounded meal, since fruits and veggies are off-limits. He will drink Vruit and V8 Fusion. I also give him kids' vitamins.

The only other symptoms of SPD he seems to exhibit is sensitivity to certain smells - some cooking or food smells, and the dog when we're in the car with him. Other than that he's a good kid and a good student, kind and considerate, connected, affectionate. He looks and acts healthy, but I am worried that he will have health issues in the future.

Thank you! Carrie

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Apr 29, 2012
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help
by: Anonymous

My boyfriend is 17. He only eats deep fried chips and marmite n cheese sandwiches. He can also eat spaghetti and chocolate strawberry or banana yoghurts. Does he have this disorder? If he has other foods such as vegetables or meat he throws up :/

Feb 01, 2011
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Use the doctor
by: Anonymous

Check out John Rosemond www.rosemond.com he writes books and answers questions. You can check out my blog www.whatstyleofparentareyou.blogspot.com where I write about my son and his eating issues and how we solved it. We thought he had food aversion but it turned out he just figured a way to eat what he wanted.

Jun 20, 2009
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been there
by: marisa

Our 8 year old has SPD and mild autism. He can only eat a handful of foods and most of them can't be touching or need to have certain textures on the outside. Luckily he'll eat vitamins but I know that doesn't replace the good foods. Sneak things into smoothies if you can. Or sauces or soups. I know it can be hard because most of the time they can tell what you did!

Hang in there and know you're not alone. We also have been doing oral tactile therapy in his mouth

Jun 17, 2009
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my 7 year old
by: Anonymous

I am so thrilled to find this site. For years I have told the pediatricians that something is not right with my child. I have 6 children and he is the last.. so I know when something is wrong. He will not eat any fruits or vegetables.. He will eat mashed potatoes only if they are completely smooth. He will not eat bread with the crust on it. He won't eat the crust on anything. I am at my wits end in finding things that he will eat. This is such a strange thing.

Mar 23, 2009
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Picky eater
by: Anonymous

This sounds like my daughter who is 9! She has an acute and very accurate sense of smell. She will happily open a packaged junk food and eat it but won't add any fruit or veg to her diet (other than the 4 veggies she has eaten for years!).

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