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Preventing Childhood Obesity By Eating Like A Two Year Old

Preventing childhood obesity by eating like a two year old may seem like a crazy thing, but it is a very smart choice. Children are very in touch with their bodies, they are designed this way. It is a survival mechanism  that’s design to signal to children when to eat, sleep , go to the bathroom etc. Adults have this same mechanism in their bodies also but they have learned to ignore it after years and years of practice. Other factors like stress, boredom, anxiety and other emotional factors are a large factor in how adults eat. Not to mention all of the advertising and messages that we are constantly bombarded with.


From infancy children give us clues to their needs by crying when they need something. Because their needs are very basic in the beginning we learn them and they help us take care of them. There are only a few needs that they have hunger, changing, sleep and companionship and stimulation. These things we do because we love and care for them. But something seems to happen after around the 2 year mark or a little earlier, we stop taking the cues that are given to us by our children. When infants have had enough to eat they push the nipple away with their tongue or turn their heads. This signals to us that they have had enough to eat. We may try a couple of times to make sure but we do not try to force feed them.


Children always know when they have had enough, always. As parents and care givers we sometimes take this inner knowing away from them robbing them of a very important skill that they need to master if they want to be healthy and that is self regulation. It is very important that we allow children to learn to self regulate themselves and honor and respect when they have said or expressed that they had enough  or even that they want more .Children’s appetite cannot always be regulated by a clock either.

We can offer and encourage children with  different healthy options  and try and be a good role model in eating healthy foods and beverages ourselves. We can try to prepare foods in different ways taking advantage of options like raw fruits and vegetables. juicing, smoothies, steamed, baked and broiled foods. It also a good idea to introduce children to a variety of healthy foods from all 5 food groups and eliminating as much processed foods and sweets as possible.


One way that healthy eating can happen is through proper planning. Many times we are rushing and have such tight schedules that many of our meals are on the go. More food is eaten in cars than at the dinner table. Believe me I totally understand, because even though I know better it happens to me also. What I am saying is that if you plan your menus and snacks in advance, take into consideration your schedule and that of your kids, having to resort to fast food, sugary drinks and other processed foods will happen a lot less often.

Eating like a two year old means that you pay attention to what you are eating. You take your time and chew your food and savor it. You pay attention to your body and stop eating when you are full. And you don’t budge after that, like a 2 year old there is no room for negotiation. Full belly means stop and step away from the plate! You can do it, you really can. By taking the time to pay attention and enjoy and savor your food you will be satisfied and end up eating less. This will also be a good example for your children whether teacher or parent.

I am interested in hearing your challenges as well as what has worked and is working for you. Please feel free to comment in the comment section. I’d love to hear from you. If you are interested in more on healthy eating for kids download a free report at http://healthykidsweightloss.com.

6 Responses to “Preventing Childhood Obesity By Eating Like A Two Year Old”

  1. This is so true. It is amazing how much information is right in front of us each time from just watching kids, and yet me ignore it. Thank for the reminder. Rushing has become so much a part of our lives that even when we don’t need to, we still rush through things.

  2. D'TaRelle F. Tullis says:

    I agree Jessica we do rush around so much and do not find time to just slow down. You are right it has become a habit to rush not just something we do some of the time or ocassionally. We can begin to slow down at least when we eat and stop eating in cars. At least this will be a start.

  3. When my kids were young I was so careful with everything that went in their mouths. It was a priority that it be healthy and I spent a lot of time and effort on it. As they got older I fell into the “hurry up” and get them something to eat. So many of us get caught up in the convenience of processed foods and fast foods.

    Thanks for the post, it’s a great reminder for any parent rushing through life thinking they need shortcuts to make it through their days. We all need to slow down and pay better attention to what we are feeding our children and what they’re choosing to eat too.

    • D'TaRelle F. Tullis says:

      I totally understand Linda. Consistency is so important, but I think before that happens we have to slow down first. Secondly, we get to forgive ourselves and come from an empowering place of “what do I need to do differently. And lastly we need to break that up into small pieces that are manageable and that we can do so that we will be successful and motivated and inspired to continue and also be proud of ourselves. My English teacher would probably have a fit because that was probably a long run on sentence.

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    • D'TaRelle F. Tullis says:

      Thank you so much!!!!!!! I really appreciate this award and am so happy to receive your acknowledgement.

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