My son is obsessed with food – should I worry?

My DS is 6 years old and we’ve noticed that in the past 6 months or so, he is unusually interested in food.  Here are some examples of what I mean:

  1. I went to FL for a 3 day weekend in July.  As I was packing, he asked “What are you going to eat?  Are you going to buy food there?  Are you going to eat with Grandma and Grandpa?  Where are you going to pack your food?”  
  2. When I returned from the above weekend, his first question was “What did you eat?”  I replied with, “We had steak and salad for dinner last night.”  He kept pushing it.  “What did you have for lunch?  What about breakfast?  Did you have the same thing the day before?”  It was a little odd.  I finally just told him start to finish what I ate over the 3 days.
  3. My cousin just stopped in yesterday for 20 hours.  She is spending 30 days on a greyhound bus, traveling and photographing America from the perspective of riding a greyhound bus.   Really cool and put together 24 year old!  Anyway, DS’s question to me as we were going to pick her up…”What does she eat?  Does she bring it with her?  It is packed?” 
  4. Once she was here, he asked her the same things.  “What do you eat?”  Trailmix.  “What kind of trailmix?  Does it have M&M’s?  How much do you have?  Where is it packed?  Can I see it?”
  5. I was in AZ for a 3 day worktrip… similar scenario as when I went to Florida. 
  6. In Kindergarten, he threw a fit at the concept of eating cafeteria lunch.  He was in tears.   So much so that the teacher specifically called me to talk about it and said  “They were serving chicken nuggets.  Who doesn’t like chicken nuggets?”  Very odd, because nuggets ARE one of the foods he will eat.  Ever since that day he has made his own lunch because he absolutely refuses to eat anything else. 

You get the point.  He could have asked what we did, what did we see, where did you go.  Nope.  What did you eat.  Weird, don’t you think?

The other part of this is that he’s probably gained 10lbs this summer.  He is only 6, so 10lbs is a lot.  He is pretty active – riding bikes, playing soccer, etc., and never plays video games – but he has definitely chunked up!  Love handles on his back… not so lovely on my baby.  

Of our kids, he is the pickiest eater and always has been.  I tease him that he only eats white food:

  • potatoes,
  • rice,
  • tortillas,
  • cheese,
  • noodles,
  • chicken. 

He actually does eat apples, strawberries, broccoli and asparagus too – but that’s about the limit of his diet.  Oh, and yogurt and cereal too. 

My two girls will eat anything.  I mean anything.  My youngest (2 1/2) loves tomatoes.   She pushed her pancakes to the side at a restaurant on Saturday and took over my salad.  She is a great veggie and fruit eater.  My other daughter – 8, will eat almost anything also.  She has learned that she doesn’t care for tomatoes, but other than that she will try one bite of anything and usually ends up eating it. 

I keep thinking that it isn’t my parenting or the exposure to a variety of foods that is the issue – my girls eat just fine after all. 

A friend recently suggested that maybe he has food allergies.  She said that allergies sometimes manifest as an aversion to certain foods.  Do you think that could be it?

I am at a loss.  I am not usually a hypersensitive mom, but I am actually thinking this is weird.  Any thoughts?

8 Responses to My son is obsessed with food – should I worry?

  1. Since he’s picky, I wonder is he gaining interest in other foods? It appears as he likes a lot of starch too. Which most people do.

    My son loves food!!!I have to monitor him because he’ll eat all day. He also gained a few pounds this year but so have I. We’re hoping that his football season wil help balance it out.

    • He would live on potatoes if we let him. All forms – tater tots, baked, broiled, french fries, mashed, chips…. I don’t think he’s added anything new to his “allowable” list in over a year, and we eat lots of different things. He won’t even eat hamburgers!

      But yes, I am not a skinny minny either! I am trying to get him more concious of fruits and veggies by asking if he’s had 5 servings and that’s the target. I put fresh fruit out all the time, but we also have chips and granola bars. My husband says that since I started buying in bulk, they have started eating in bulk!! Hence the bulking up… :D

      I assume it’s just a phase and he’ll get over it eventually. It’s just a little odd….. (btw – thanks for your comment!)

  2. I would take him in the kitchen with me and see if I could get him interested in helping to prep dinner and stuff. My son went through a phase where he was convinced he would be a chef. Maybe ask his ped next time you take him in, just in case.

    • He loves to help in the kitchen actually. I was watching him at soccer today and he was more winded after running than I’ve ever seen him. He’s not obese, but he’s definitely chunky these days. I have been talking to him about fruits and veggies etc… He just won’t try things very often. Hopefully it’s just a prelude to a growth spurt.

      His next appt isn’t until April. His pediatrician just advised continuing to expose him to healthy foods when i brought it up last time. It is probably not a big deal. I just worry.

  3. I’ve wondered something similar about one of my own. Though she’s not so much picky as just always eating. She loves variety, but wants a LOT of everything. I haven’t been pushing too hard, just bringing it to her attention. And I have started making bento type lunches for all 4 of my kids. Even the oldest (seniors) still love them after 2 years. It’s a great way to control (kind of) what and how much they eat at school. Plus, I can introduce new foods as long as they’re “cute” in the box. I’ll know when they get home whether they liked the new item or not. I’ve not had any of them (even my picky youngest) come home without at least trying the new item. Hope it helps.

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