One of the most common fears I hear from parents is that their child will only eat fruit if they are given the option to eat fruit. The result of this is parents limit or restrict the amount of fruits they give their child. Many parents have the belief that their children have to eat vegetables and should eat limited amounts of fruits.
I think that fruits have been given a bad rap in a lot of people’s minds. There are some schools of thoughts that believe that the sugars in fruits should be avoided and others believe that their children will get fat from eating too much fruit, but in reality, for a child’s diet, fruits can play an important role. Fruits are full of fibre as well as vitamins and minerals, and some also have a fair amount of fluid. One concern parents often have regarding fruits is that it will either cause constipation (like with bananas) or eating too much will cause diarrhea.
In healthy, developmentally normal kids, if they are able to regulate their intake without pressure, they will eat enough of any given food to meet their needs. My little one often prefers fruits over vegetables, and I usually put some sort of fruit on the table daily as I know if there is nothing else on the table that my little one will eat, likely he will fill his tummy with the available fruit and milk. Yes, there have been meals that he has only consumed the fruit, like the time he ate 3 mangos for dinner, or 5 mandarin oranges for lunch. Likewise, there have been many meals he has not touched the fruit. He goes through phases that he seems to need certain nutrients at a given time, and he meets those needs by his food selection so he can grow.
If you are a parent who is concerned with your child’s fruits intake, I would love to hear what your concerns are.