The peak time for picky eating is the toddler or preschool years. A picky eater:
Children of all ages (and adults) commonly have a few food dislikes. A picky eater is a child with many food dislikes. At age 2 or 3, up to 20 percent of children are picky eaters. It is normal for most young children to dislike foods with a bitter or spicy taste. Sometimes children dislike foods because of their color, but more often it's because they are difficult to chew. Children accept tender meats better than tough ones, and well-cooked vegetables better than raw. Occasionally a child who gags on large pieces of all foods has large tonsils that make it difficult to swallow.
Most children who are picky eaters will grow out of it. They start trying new foods during the early school years because of peer pressure. The voracious appetite during the teen years also increases the willingness to experiment. If you try to force your child to eat a food he doesn't like, he may gag or even vomit. Forced feedings always interfere with the normal pleasure of eating and eventually decreases the appetite. Learning to accept new foods should not be expected before the teenage years.
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