Dr. Dahlsgaard with patient, 10-year-old, Brendan For families of picky eaters, dinner time can be a nightmare. Many parents blame themselves, thinking there’s something they did to cause their child’s extreme eating habits. For families of children with Avoidant Restrictive Food Intake Disorder, or ARFID, the problems can start to affect the whole family. But Katherine Dahlsgaard, PhD, ABPP, Clinical Director of the Anxiety Behaviors Clinic at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, recently published a study showing parents how they can help their kids overcome their extreme picky eating.
In an interview with CBS3, Dr. Dahlsgaard explained, “It’s a disgust disorder. It’s a ‘yuck!’ disorder.”
Dr. Dahlsgaard says there is hope for parents of picky eaters. Some of her tips involve timing children, and rewarding them for eating foods they may not necessarily enjoy.
It worked for Kelly and her 10-year-old son, Brendan. His diet used to consist of crackers, Goldfish, and one brand of American Cheese. Now he’s eating vegetables, spaghetti and meatballs, and even steak!