My son spent at least a year of his toddler-hood refusing all meat and chicken. As he had been the ‘perfect eater’ up until that time I was in shock! I was fanatically aware of the importance of iron for his brain development, as only as over-caring , nutritionally trained mother can be, and had to use great amounts of self control not to panic and force-feed him!
I tried to feed him every other source of iron possible – iron-fortified cereal, peanut butter on wholemeal bread, hummus, spinach, eggs, dried apricots, figs, baked beans, all served with vitamin C-rich fruit to enhance absorption.
Meanwhile I tried disguising meat in pasta sauce, mini-meatballs, meatloaf, tiny morsels hidden in fried rice, chicken liver pate on crackers and finely sliced fillet steak delicately arranged around the plate with other choice morsels. Most of my efforts were rejected. Each time I fell into frantic visions of my son’s brain atrophying from lack of iron I reminded myself that this was a stage that would end. Not many 15-year-old boys refuse steak.