Is fussy eating getting in the way of your child’s nutrition and happiness?
Is the stress of mealtimes impacting your family’s quality of life? 

Introducing our feeding therapy program for children with fussy eating habits or sensory issues. 

Jacqui Palmer, an experienced paediatric dietitian, has developed this program to help fussy eaters and their families regain the joy of eating. While improved nutrition is the goal, so is developing the skills necessary to be become a competent eater. 

This program aims to help you and your child cope with the obstacles that mealtimes present, and make meals the relaxed and joyful moments they should be! Taking elements of the well-known ‘SOS approach to feeding therapy’ (Toomey et al.) and Ellen Satter’s ‘Division of Responsibility’, Jacqui’s approach is designed to reduce mealtime tensions, whilst supporting your child’s steps towards a healthier and more varied diet. 

Eating is something that we need to do everyday and when eating is stressful, daily life becomes stressful.

This program is for children but also for parents

Progress means practice – so you’ll need to integrate the strategies into your family meals. There is no quick fix so it is important to us that parents emerge feeling empowered by this program, as the learning will continue beyond therapy. There will be struggles but also lightbulb moments as you work towards healthy meals and relaxed mealtimes. 

We ask parents to be ready for the time and effort needed for progress. That means being prepared for home practice to be a big part of your approach! With an open mind and lots of willing, you’ll be rewarded with changes that will improve your family quality of life. Participating in therapy will help you to keep it going once the program has finished and keep your child on the road to competent eating. 

We also ask for some background medical information to help tailor advice and any contacts that might be relevant such as your child’s OT or speech therapist (if they have one). 

In addition, below is a list of tasks that you should complete once enrolled and before your child’s first practical session. Ideally, if you could have them ready for session one, we can use them as a prompt in your session.

Is it for me?

If your child fits in one of the following groups then they may benefit from the program:

  • Children aged 2 to 12 with a food range of less than 20 foods

  • Children who display an aversion to foods across different environments (home, childcare, a friend’s house).

  • Children who refuse entire texture groups (chewy, smooth, mixed, dry, moist) or food groups (vegetables, meats). If you see your child living on nuggets and chips – it’s a good indication.

  • Children for whom mealtimes are stressful (crying, gagging, screaming, point blank refusal)

  • Children who show signs of altered sensory processing – particularly of tactile and olfactory input (extremely sensitive to smells, tastes and textures of foods – sensitive to environmental input)

This program is not for you if:

If your toddler to twelve-year old simply refuses one or two foods, or occasionally puts their foot down and refuses to eat your lovingly prepared meal – this therapy is unlikely to be necessary. 

Things to do before your child’s first session:

  • Complete the sensory eating checklist (A link to this will be provided when you book)
  • Complete a food diary (template will be provided)
  • Provide height and weight records (from the red book)
  • Relevant bloods: Iron, B12, Vitamin D (if available)
  • Record a 5-minute video of a typical mealtime for your child (preferably a meal rather than snack)

What to expect

Your first appointment with Jacqui will focus on developing a good understanding of your child’s eating habits and preferences along with their challenges with eating behaviours and sensory needs.  From this,  Jacqui will be able to advise on the best approach to take with future appointments. All appointments with Jacqui are via Zoom (video conference) which allows you and your child to be in the comfort of home and the normal dining environment.  If you require face to face appointments for feeding therapy, Jacqui will arrange this in our clinic with our dietitian Amber Schilder.  Together they can provide effective support for both parent and child and expand and explore eating. 

To book

Click on ‘Book now’ below and select our paediatric dietitian, Jacqui Palmer. From there you will be able to select an initial consultaiton.  You will be sent an email confirming this appointment and important information about your appointment. 

Book now

See below for more information about our paediatric dietitian

Jacqui Palmer
Paediatric Dietitian

Jacqui has been a Dietitian for 20 years in both Queensland and London. Jacqui has worked in some of London’s largest hospitals and witnessed such courage and determinate in the children she helped that she became committed to improving their quality of life though better nutrition.  In London, Jacqui worked as a clinical paediatric dietitian at the prestigious Royal London, St Barts and Lewisham Hospitals. Jacqui has developed significant experience in complex allergies, faltering growth, gut health and Autistic Spectrum disorder. Please note that Jacqui offers telehealth appointments only. We find that this works well with busy parents and children feel more comfortable. 

Specialist areas:

Fussy eaters

Growth and weight issues

Food allergies and intolerances

Autism and spectrum disorders

Gut issues in children