I thought I’d start the week with a bit of a soapbox spiel, but done with the best of intentions!
I get how convenient yoghurt pouches are and also how much children love them. But for picky eaters especially I would be advising that they only get used occasionally.
1. Our child is not getting the full flavour from the yoghurt if it’s in a pouch. Much of our taste comes from smell, so if the yoghurt is squeezed straight into the mouth, we’re missing this experience and the learning that goes with it.
2. Our child is more likely to be sucking rather than eating when they are getting food from a pouch. Eating uses valuable muscles.
3. Our child is not seeing the food and building that comfort level with it. In fact, the favourite status is often conferred on the branding or packaging.
4. They miss out on the fine motor skills needed to eat with a spoon from a container or bowl.
5. They are addictive. I know many older primary children who will now only eat yoghurt from a pouch.
6. Pouches are expensive and there is lots of packaging.
- If your child will happily eat from a pottle or bowl – fabulous!
- If your child will sometimes eat from a pottle or bowl but prefers the pouch, I would advise having them eat more regularly from a container.
- If your child will only eat from a pouch, then getting it out of the pouch is definitely worth a whirl.
Using the pouch to make ‘squirty shapes’ or pictures is great fun and can often be an inducement to eat some of the yoghurt without it being in the pouch. You can squirt onto a plate to make patterns or shapes and then lick it off or scrape it off with a finger or a spoon.
Or the yoghurt can be squirted onto another favourite food like a cookie or a muffin.
If your child is not eating yoghurt or finds it a bit of a challenge, then squirty pictures are great fun. I did the ones in the photo using a squeezy bottle with a nozzle. It’s a great way to get our child interacting with the yoghurt.
Judith is an AOTA accredited picky eating advisor and internationally certified nutritional therapist. She works with 100+ families every year resolving fussy eating and returning pleasure and joy to the meal table.
She is also mum to two boys and the author of Creating Confident Eaters and Winner Winner I Eat Dinner.
Her dream is that every child is able to approach food from a place of safety and joy, not fear.
Learn more about Judith here: https://theconfidenteater.com/about/