A new category of eating disorder, known as Avoidant/Restrictive Food Intake Disorder (ARFID), emerged in May of 2013 in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th edition.
Many children will avoid certain foods because of taste, other times it’s because of texture.
And many of those children grow out of that phase. But that doesn’t seem to be happening as often now.
Dr. Debra Katzman at the Hospital for Sick Children says this disorder compromises their health and development, and can be sparked by psychological factors, such as choking on a specific food. Following an incident like that, a child will likely not want to eat that food again.
Mike’s not buying it. Sure, there are some extreme cases where extensive psychiatric help is required, but in most cases he feels that this picky eating is a result of parents who are feeding their kids only what they WANT to eat, not what they NEED to eat.
Parents are feeding their kids Kraft Dinner, chicken fingers and french fries for dinner all the time because they know the food will be eaten, and is easier than fighting about the issue or sending the child to bed hungry.
Naturopathic doctor and mother of four Mary Choi says her children have healthy appetites but knows their tastes change constantly.
“It can go day by day, meal to meal. What they like changes all the time,” said Choi. “The key is to be in tune with what your children are eating and what they’re avoiding.”
The problem is, what they like very likely isn’t what they should be eating!