Worrying about your child's eating habits

Betsy Brown Braun, MA Parent Educator & Author, shares advice for parents worried about their child's picky eating habits and how to help them eat healthier
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Worrying about your child's eating habits

Children's eating habit is a loaded topic for parents. Picky eating, in particular, gets parents upset or worried or concerned because they see it as a reflection of their parenting. Somehow I'm good parent because my child eats that or I'm a bad parent because my child eats this. That's not what picky eating is about. Picky eating is about young children discovering that they have tastes and they have choice. It's yet another way of them asserting themselves. I try to help parents think about: How can I solve the picky eating problem. First I say, you can't solve it, it's going to solve itself as children grow up. Here's what you shouldn't do: Don't get involved in your child's picky eating. Don't tell them what they can eat and don't tell them what they can't eat. Don'tsay to them, "Just take a bite," because sure as I can tell you, they will not take a bite. My best advice for picky eating is to sit down at the table, serve your child what your eating. He will eat or he will not eat. Don't talk about it. Back off. Your child's not going to starve. If he's hungry enough, he'll eat his shoe.

Betsy Brown Braun, MA Parent Educator & Author, shares advice for parents worried about their child's picky eating habits and how to help them eat healthier


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Betsy Brown Braun, MA

Parent Educator & Author

Betsy Brown Braun, best-selling author of both Just Tell Me What to Say: Sensible Tips and Scripts for Perplexed Parents and You’re Not The Boss Of Me: Brat-proofing Your Four To Twelve Year-Old, is a child development and behavior specialist, parent educator, multiple birth parenting consultant, and founder of Parenting Pathways, Inc.

With over 40 years of experience in public and private early childhood and elementary education, Betsy has directed and founded school programs, taught in both public and private schools, has been a school director, and was the founding director of Wilshire Boulevard Temple’s Early Childhood Center. She holds an MA in Human Development and teaching credentials from Pacific Oaks College.

In 2001 Betsy founded Parenting Pathways, Inc. to provide guidance to parents seeking the skills and confidence needed to negotiate the often-challenging parenting pathway. She leads parenting groups, seminars, and offers private parent consultations throughout the nation.

Her bestseller, Just Tell Me What To Say, in its fourth printing,presents the tried and true tools her clients use daily to handle situations that inevitably accompany raising children ages two to six and beyond. Her second book, and second bestseller, You’re Not The Boss Of Me: Brat-Proofing Your Kidsalso in its fourth printing, is the ultimate hands-on guide to cultivating character traits that are tried-and-true "bratbusters." 

Betsy brings her vast knowledge, sensitivity, and special brand of humor to her parent consultations, to her groups, and to her presentations.

Her parenting expertise has been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, U.S. News & World Report, Cookie, Family Circle, Good Housekeeping, In Style, Parenting, Parents, Pregnancy and Newborn, Twins, Woman’s Day, and Working Mother, among other publications. She has shared her expertise on the Today Show multiple times. Other television appearances have included The Early Show, Good Morning America Now!, Fox & Friends, Rachel Ray, Dr. Phil,  The Talk, Entertainment Tonight, KCBS, KNBC, and Fox News LA. She contributes to KNX news radio on child development, and has been a guest on countless radio programs nationwide, including NPR. She writes for and has been cited in numerous websites and parenting blogs. Betsy is a frequent speaker at educational conferences, schools, and businesses.

Betsy and her husband Ray Braun are parents of adult triplets.

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