In this episode of the Peaceful Parenting Podcast, I sit down with Jennifer Anderson, Registered Dietitian and founder of Kids Eat in Color. 

Jennifer, a leading expert in addressing picky eating and food anxiety in children, shares the importance of the ‘division of responsibility’ in feeding kids, noting that parents decide what food is provided, when, and where, but children decide if and how much they eat. 

We also talk about promoting healthy eating habits without instilling fear of ‘bad food,’ and explore how diet culture, neurodivergence, and parental fears can influence children’s relationships with food.

We cover:

  • [6:33] Why it’s important to get kids to eat a variety of foods
  • [10:15] Age as a factor in picky eating
  • [11:50] Sensory issues with picky eating, and reasons kids might not just ‘grow out’ of picky eating
  • [16:31] Realizing our own capacity and releasing parental guilt
  • [18:33] Child led exposure therapy vs. ARFID
  • [19:45] The line between doing feeding therapy out of concern vs. pressuring kids into eating more
  • [26:42] Two sides to a good relationship with food
  • [28:04] Drawing the line between genuine needed concern and diet culture influence
  • [33:28] Good food vs. Bad food
  • [39:33] Suggestions for how parents can talk about food 
  • [42:48] Support families around feeling their kids are eating too much or little
  • [55:45] Advice to her younger parent self

As a mother, wife, registered dietitian, and founder of Kids Eat in Color®, Jennifer Anderson faced challenges in feeding her children, especially when her first child began falling off the growth chart. This experience led her to specialize in child nutrition and picky eating. 

After extensive research, she developed an approach involving small, evidence-based adjustments to mealtime routines that effectively reduced food-related stress. She established Kids Eat in Color and assembled a team of experts to offer practical strategies and resources to parents struggling with similar issues. Recognizing the impact of small changes and variety in a child’s diet, her platform provides guides, courses, and tools to help parents manage mealtime challenges and promote their children’s health.

Download the episode transcript HERE

Resources mentioned in this episode:

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