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Parents and Guardians Forum>Would it be Awful to Take Away Snack Times
cheerfuldom 02:46 PM 11-18-2011
This is regarding my own children, not the daycare kids. My kids wake up at 7:30 and have a healthy breakfast. This morning was oatmeal, fruit and milk. Keep in mind that for the most part, we do healthy meals. Very little convenience food, in fact I offered them those Gerber graduate meals one time and they both refused to eat it. Okay so they were previously all having a snack at 9:30 (daycare kids included) but the daycare kids NEVER ate snack and my two did fine until lunch so I got tired of throwing away food and stopped offering it period. It has been a few months and that seems to work for us. Occasionally I can tell that they need a little something extra and so we do offer snack on an as needed basis.

Here's the issue.....
My two eat afternoon snack but more often than not, pick at their dinners, rarely ever finish (and i offer only a small portion). Would it be a bad idea to go to 3 meals a day only? no snacks? they are 2.5 and almost 4 years old and healthy in every way. I would prefer them to eat dinner because that is our meal together as a family. I have tried to cut down snack to something very, very small and at this point, I am thinking that is more trouble and really not that far away from cutting out snacks completely.

so heres what our schedule would be
breakfast at 7:30
lunch at 11:00
nap is 12 to 3
dinner is at 5
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daycare 02:52 PM 11-18-2011
I was always taught 5 meals a day.

I would reduce the snack if possible to something like string cheese and milk

or cracker and milk

I have a hard time getting my little man to consume all of the meals required by the food program, I ask him to eat at least one thing at each meal.

You never want to let their bodies go into starvation mode, this is when their bodies will start to store fat going into survival mode.

I know you are not starving them and they may not even be hungry, it's just what the body does.....
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mismatchedsocks 03:00 PM 11-18-2011
I would think they would be ok with no snack, not sure if that will help the dinner appetite, you know how kids are!
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cheerfuldom 03:03 PM 11-18-2011
they do eat very well when hungry so thats not an issue but I think the snack at 3 and then dinner at 5 are just too close together. I don't want to move dinner later.
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Unregistered 04:02 PM 11-18-2011
Originally Posted by cheerfuldom:
This is regarding my own children, not the daycare kids. My kids wake up at 7:30 and have a healthy breakfast. This morning was oatmeal, fruit and milk. Keep in mind that for the most part, we do healthy meals. Very little convenience food, in fact I offered them those Gerber graduate meals one time and they both refused to eat it. Okay so they were previously all having a snack at 9:30 (daycare kids included) but the daycare kids NEVER ate snack and my two did fine until lunch so I got tired of throwing away food and stopped offering it period. It has been a few months and that seems to work for us. Occasionally I can tell that they need a little something extra and so we do offer snack on an as needed basis.

Here's the issue.....
My two eat afternoon snack but more often than not, pick at their dinners, rarely ever finish (and i offer only a small portion). Would it be a bad idea to go to 3 meals a day only? no snacks? they are 2.5 and almost 4 years old and healthy in every way. I would prefer them to eat dinner because that is our meal together as a family. I have tried to cut down snack to something very, very small and at this point, I am thinking that is more trouble and really not that far away from cutting out snacks completely.

so heres what our schedule would be
breakfast at 7:30
lunch at 11:00
nap is 12 to 3
dinner is at 5
My own kids eating schedule is as follows

8am- breakfest
11am- lunch
2pm- snack
5pm dinner
7:30pm- snack

Never have a problem getting them to eat a meal maybe take out morning snack I think its a long time to fo from 11 to 5 without a snack in there.
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meganlavonnesmommy 06:39 PM 11-18-2011
I would cut out the morning snack, but not the afternoon. Especially for the 2 year old. 6 hours is a long time to go without food. Just offer something small, some goldfish crackers and water, or a piece of fruit. Something that wont fill them up, but will put a little something in their bellys.
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MyAngels 09:57 AM 11-19-2011
I'm going to preface this by saying that I'm not a dietitian or nutritionist by any stretch, but I would say that unless they are hungry I would skip the snack. IMO you have the right idea with your morning snack, by giving it when they are hungry and skipping it when they're not.

One of the reasons that we have such a problem with obesity in this country is because so many people just eat to eat, not because they are actually hungry.

If you are concerned that they would not get sufficient calories, maybe you could run it by your pediatrician or a dietitian.
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Nellie 06:51 PM 12-02-2011
Perhaps do veggies or fruit for a pm snack. Just a little so they aren't starving at dinner. 11 to 5 seems like a long time, but we are in a county that over eats and is extremely obese. I don't really think a small portion of fruit or a vegetable would cause an extreme difference in meal eating.

If they are getting enough calories they will probable be fine. I came from a 3 meal a day family. I was a thin child. I just remember being so hungry before dinner. I ate what was on my plate. If my mom would have put more on the plate I would have probable eaten more, but I never wanted to wait for her to cut more meat or get more baked potato ready. Sometimes my dad made popcorn before bed or we had ice cream, but not as a nightly thing. Nights that we didn't have anything I remember being hungry and thinking about food while I lay in bed. My parents never asked us if we were hungry and I think if we would have asked they probable would have made us a snack, but I grew up with the mentality of you eat when you are fed. If daycare kids are getting a snack it may be hard for them to see them get something and not them.
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AnneCordelia 06:01 AM 12-03-2011
What do you serve for afternoon snack?

I'd still want to serve something small. I'd stick to easily digestible foods and avoid carbs for that snack. 6 or 7 raspberries and a glass of milk. Half a banana and a glass of milk. A single yogurt cup. Something small, wholesome and easily digested.
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Heidi 06:00 PM 12-03-2011
I think that you should continue to offer a snack, but make it vegies, fruit, and milk vs. carbs and protein.

6 hours is too long to wait for a meal, and my understanding is that you want to keep blood sugar more even. If eating a healthy snack means eating a little less dinner, no harm is done.

I understand that this is your family meal time, admire it, in fact. But, sitting together as a family isn't so much about quantity of food eaten. If they don't eat much, you can still enjoy the time together. They can linger over a small portion just as well as wolfing down a large one.

Btw: If you don't already let them serve themselves, you could start. Expectains being what goes on your plate gets eaten, and you have to put at least one bite of everything on your plate.

If there are leftovers, you don't have to cook for the dc the next day, or hubby or you have your lunch!
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jojosmommy 08:09 PM 12-04-2011
I would serve a fruit/veggie only snack. My son is 2.5 and eats at 7:30 11:30 3:00 and 5:30. Most of the time he is "starving" for the upcoming meal. I think it depends on the child but I would offer it so that they don't have to go too long between being offered a meal. If it is a fruit/veggie and they eat it at snack instead of dinner there is no harm done.
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GretasLittleFriends 02:20 PM 12-05-2011
I personally believe in eat less, more often. It seems that several smaller meals are better for you then just 3 large meals. However, I do agree with pps, if your kids aren't hungry don't make them eat.

The meal schedule we have is:
Breakfast 7A
Morning Snack between 9:30 and 10a
Lunch 12
PM Snack Between 3:30 and 4p
Dinner 6p
Evening snack 7:45p (Usually glass of milk and crackers before bed)
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Tags:meal schedule, provider - own child, snack not, snack times
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