My 15 year old eats a very limited diet. There are few foods he’ll eat, and most of those seem to be carbohydrates! How can I help him increase the variety of what he’ll eat?
This can be really frustrating seeing your adolescent choose the same food over and over again (especially when you’re probably providing many options)!
First off, eating mostly carbohydrate foods is normal and important for growing teens. Read about the importance of carbohydrates and amounts needed daily.
Next, there are some strategies you can implement to support your adolescent’s food intake.
Supporting increased variety
You can read this post for six steps for helping your adolescent increase their food variety
Some key points are to:
- Build on the foods he already likes by making small changes and introducing similar foods
- Continue providing neutral exposure to new/non accepted food. He’s not too old to be exposed to new foods! Watch food videos together, bring him into the kitchen to explore making food in a non-pressured environment, or plant a garden.
- Keep the eating and food environment neutral and pressure free
- Get support! If your adolescent is struggling with eating a variety of food and it’s impacting him socially, emotionally, or physically, he may benefit from personalized professional assistance.
Variety may be the spice of life, so if your adolescent is struggling to eat enough food from each food group, support to increase variety can be important for their growth and development.