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August 06, 2008

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Could someone offer up some advice to this crazy mom! My 3yr old is on a limited diet due to food allergies. At ten months we found out that he was allergic to wheat,eggs,milk,soy,peanuts,fish & shellfish. Now thankfully he has outgrown all but the milk,eggs and peanuts. The problem is that he is now a picky eater and doesn't eat enough. He has been the same weight for almost 2 years, he has grown some in height but still in only the 5th percentile for both. My pediatrician isn't concerned, but I am. What can I do? Am I worrying too much?

I have g/b twins that were born at 32 weeks. But with very healthy weights 4.4 and 5.1 since getting down to 2#s it has been a struggle to get them to gain weight. At almost 4 yrs old they are only 24lbs (haven't gain any weight in 2 yrs). We have had them tested for everything possible but everything is normal. I don't have the problems getting them to eat. They eat everything they can. Since the doctors don't know why they will not gain weight we were told they have Failure to Thrive. Those words sounded so harse. I have them with extra calorie diets and the carnation instant breakfast with whole milk. Nothing works. I have had them in swimming, tumbling and different sports that they are big enough for and it has really built their muscles up. But I really hate the looks I get from other parents at swimming when they look at my children. You can count every bone in there spin and ribs OMG. I have learned that there is nothing I can do. Just let them run there course. I just have a hard time getting pants they were 3T pants in the height but no where in close in the waist. TG for adjustable waist. Just hang in there. I know I will and see what happens.

Gosh, I really am a bad mother. My toddler weighs maybe 19 pounds, is below the weight chart, but since she has gained a little at most check-ups the doctor didn't tell me to do anything special about it. She doesn't eat much. But I have never shopped special for her (except for picking up some Morningstar veggie patties which she SOMETIMES eats) and it never even occurred to me to sneak extra calories into her food.

I think the thing I worry about most as a mom is that I don't worry enough.

oh, my darling boy is also a 'non-eater' as someone above called it. At 14 months, both my girls were proficient eaters of finger foods, any little bits and pieces I put in front of them disappeared. But this little guy? well, strawberries are the only thing he reliably eats. bananas, pears, melon may or may not be eaten. Carrots and sweet potatoes, maybe, maybe not. noodles? NO. Rice, potatoes? no. Bits of dads toast, yes, any other bread, no. He will eat potato farls (a potato pancake like product I can sometimes find at the store here in the UK), most of the time. But if I try to rely on them, he goes off them. Cheerios? no( I thought all children ate cheerios!

The only green things he eats are pears, grapes and peas, though not consistently.

Meat? sometimes a bit of minced/ground beef, but lately we've been feeding him meatless sausages, and were surprised to find those got eaten. is he a vegetarian already?

I just keep telling myself, he'll eat if he's hungry. But when will that be??

Thank God! I am not alone in this! I thought I was!!!

I am not certifiably insane and as my husband says I should be - I am not ready for the looney bin!

You see, my Princess has limited her diet to Chocolate Milk, Chicken nuggets/ Drimsticks, Mashed Potatoes, Rice & BLACK beans, and that's IT!

Angel Eyes on the other hand is still limited to Chocolate Pudding, Milk, Orange/ Apple Juice and Stage 3 baby foods (I know his oral sensory issues are to blame alot on this)

But they are way too skinny and the docs try to reassure me that they are fine but I am so accustomed to the fat chuncky latin kids that this kinds weirds me out!

My two Amazons could come teach them a few lessons in eating. Both are over 97th percentile for height and weight, so they're either eating well, or it's true that they really do put growth hormone in McD's chicken nuggets.

Mine have never gotten above 7th percent in weight on the chart. They are tall and skinny as hell. My theory is, go with it. Because honestly, there's not a dam thing to do about it, save for feeding them a bunch of crap, which I'm just not willing to do.

Even the adjustable pants hang off my girls butts.

My 2 1/2 year old grandson is also on the eating every 4th day if the clouds are in the shape of a kangaroo plan. But on that 4th day, look out, he eats everything in sight. I'm hoping it's a phase.

This is off subject, but I respect your opinion and you more of a seasoned blogger than I am. I have a troll. It's a bit like admitting I have herpes, but it's there and I couldn't ignore it. What is your advice on handling trolls?
Thanks,
Brighton

Pediasure maybe?

I think of that entire list Thalia eats the noodles and the yogurt.

Also cookies, which I think is her third food group. So that's pretty well-rounded, right?

Oh, can I relate. My 30-month-old son is tiny, both in weight and height. He was born 8.5 lbs and started dropping at about 6-8 months, and though he stopped, he never caught back up. He weighs 25 pounds, wears 12-18 month pants. I'm very tall and thin; Dad's average height and weight. Now we have a daughter, 6 months, born the same weight and an inch shorter. She's a roly poly 17 pounds. We tested our son for whatever we could think of, but aside from some basic allergies, he's fine. And growing, just slowly. He's a whirlwind. And he eats great, if he feels like it. If not, forget it. (It seems like he didn't eat from about 12-18 mos.) Meantime we use whole milk, Carnation Instant Breakfast, sausage, eggs, butter, etc. It'll be a real mental challenge if our daughter ends up having the opposite problem he does. But they're healthy and happy and we think will find their perfect spots on the dreaded growth charts in their own sweet time.

Butter everything. If that doesn't work there is always McDonalds.

My kid won't eat noodles, either. Been trying to get him to eat pasta or rice of any kind for years now. No dice.

Have I told you before that I used to add half-and-half to my son's whole milk? I'd buy it fresh in the carton (not the kind in the little packs--too many preservatives) and I'd pour a good two ounces right in to every cup of whole milk when my son was younger.

This was before he started eating normal picky-kid things, like chicken nuggets, as consistently as he does now. Now I just give him regular whole milk. But I still do let him put chocolate in it, if he asks. Heck, I've let him eat butter straight off the stick before. He's four years old and 2T underwear still fits him. I think he weighs even less than Quinlan does. At his last doctor's visit several months ago, he was still under 30 lbs.

Never in my life (pre-child life) did I have any clue how much it would bother me to have what I call a non-eater. His staples are pizza, cheese only, maybe french fries, sometimes chicken nuggets, onion rings, garlic bread, oatmeal, cereal, bananas, grapes, yogurt. He gags (likely pukes) if beef actually enters his mouth, has never had mac n cheese and not for my lack of trying. One of my friends suggested that Seinfeld woman's book and I said, if he'd just eat mac n cheese I'd be elated. No way in hell is he going to eat it with brocoli and carrots in it...

Our daughter, Izzie, 17 months, is like that.


She's been on an "increased calorie" diet for a few months now.

She just recently hit 17 lbs.

My son exists on very little as well. Right now it is goldfish crackers, bagels, chicken nuggets, pasta and scrambled eggs. Do you see any color other than yellow? Ewwwww. (and so much for my healthy lifestyle cover)

But, I think we (parents, doctors) put WAY too much emphasis on chubby = health, esp when they are young. I saw a nutritionist when my middle was small and she told me to soak everything in butter. Ahhhh, no way. At 5, she is healthy, strong and tiny. Just as she is supposed to be. And, her cholesterol will probably kick ass some day.

My Son-J doesn't eat much, somedays he will just eat candies or nutella sandwiches but no more. I started him on Pediasure and it has helped him a lot, he drinks one for breakfast and if he doesn't eat anything else during the day he has another one for dinner. He has been gaining weight and he looks/feels better.

Son-E eats everything you put on his plate, he is healthy and his weight stays consistent with his height.

They are freaternal twins, 5 years old.

My little guy, who turned 2 today is the same weight that he was at his 6 month visit. No weight gain in 18 months. Nada. He was exclusively breastfed until he was 9.5 months (his decision, not mine). Good thing he was a hefty 6 month old, because he's been living on those fat stores for 18 months!

He will consume ZERO pasta, very little meat, a few green beans, apples (but ONLY if they are served whole and NOT CUT) and lives on whole milk and blueberry nutrigrain waffles. I can't wait to see what his pediatrician has to say at our next visit.

My first son consistently lost weight well into his second year. We put him on what we termed "The Julia Child diet" in which we added butter and brown sugar to every vegetable we could...and just butter to those who didn't taste good with sugar. My second son...well, he's a bruiser, so it's just plain veggies for him.

My two (4yrs, 20m) are spaghetti o's addicts. Seriously. When they're on sale at the grocery, I'm the wacko who's taking every.damned.can off the shelf because that's all my kids eat. Oatmeal, milk, spaghetti o's, bananas and grapes. Do any of those look like vegetables to you? Yeah, me either. They're both entirely differently shaped (#1 is short for his age and skrawwwwny! #2 is tall for his age and very stocky - he's our football player) but almost the exact same size/weight. I used to stress but figure their metabolisms/bodies have a secret plan for growth that I am not allowed to know about. I feed'em til they're full of the healthiest foods I can get in to them, their bodies do the rest.

My ten year old daughter just broke 59 pounds. The seven year old son just hit 40 pounds. It's just how they are wired- the two older kids have grown just fine.

And we should all have adjustable pants. You know, just for growing room ; )

Yeah, I have one of those too. And I am a laidback mom. He makes me tear my hair out sometimes, I swear. And yes, it does make you get creative. Seriously, WHAT child doesn't like mac n' cheese??

Surprisingly, it is possible to grow without eating. My boys are living proof but I feel your stress.

I'm relying heavily on drinkable yogurt. Also, pancakes with syrup and real butter, bacon, and yes, they like spaghetti and egg noodles (No Yolks brand).

Thank God they like grilled chicken or NOTHING would be remotely healthy.

My skinny toddler is 12 now and is still skinny and small, he wears clothes that fit 9-10 yr olds. I'm not too concerned as his Dad and my brothers were slow growers and they turned out normal height and weight. I understand the picky eating thing too he is getting better though. My 9 month old seems to be following in his footsteps and its a real pain in the ass but less worring. The best of luck to you.

I couldn't get my kid to gain weight even if I fed her chocolate covered fishing weights. Big thorn in my side but I deal, oh I deal (even with the sh*t I get from the relatives). Her cycles of love/hate with food are enough to drive me bonkers... which probably explains a lot.

I couldn't get Tessa to gain weight so I gave her spoons of peanut butter. Then I spent the next three months on my hands and knees scrubbing said peanut butter of the walls at toddler height. She's still scrawny, but considering the fact that I've always battled being overweight, I'm sure not trying to get her fat!

http://notesfromthesleepdeprived.blogspot.com

I hear you- my Kicker is in 9 month outfits and 12 month pants, but they're hugely baggy on him, considering he's only just turned 6 months old. He's really long, but SKINNY! It's slightly disconcerting to me, but the doctor says he's perfectly healthy, he just looks thinner because he's in the 99% for length at his age.
Besides, I married a stick-figure (what 38yr old male still wears their high school size of 31w30l jeans? Heck, I can't even wear that), so I guess our son is taking after Dad.

We have the opposite issue with Jack. He eats a normal, healthy diet and doesn't go crazy on junk or eat huge portions. But. He is a big kid. He came into the world at 10 pounds and he's always going to be.. well.. solid. Like his Mama, I guess.

I dread the day someone tries to tell him he's fat. He's not, by the way, but he's also not a typical knob-kneed five-year-old. His little brother is much more slight of build, and I often marvel that I birthed two such different kids. I can only imagine what's in store with this next one... :)

RMWhitney -- I'm Chinese -- pretty damn close, at least when it comes to food. :)

My daughter was huge chubby, to the point the Dr asked me what I was feeding her. I looked her in the eyes and said "Breastmilk and pureed veggies" shut her the hell up.
Then my son was super tiny.
Same story..
"Breastmilk and pureed veggies'
He just now is breaking the 25 pound mark and he's nearly two. Luckily they aren't picky eaters but I'll be damned if the second someone questions you on your children's habits you don't start to get all squishy, right..

I have a small fry as well. And we could compare notes on strategies to feed them, but really the point is that you're not alone. And it's a mother's duty to obsess about this, so you get a good grade for doing your job. (Sure you're not Jewish?) The bonus is that all the snacking that keeps them quiet is just fine for these slim jims. Keep on passing the Cheerios. But roll them in butter, first.

Isn't it bizarre to read labels in search of HIGH fat foods? When my oldest was sick, we had to get some meat on dem bones. The dietician, who bore no resemblance to Paula Deen, recommended adding buttah to everything. And we started spiking her drinks with unflavored peptamen jr. Our motto was "make every bite count." Good luck!

Like many of the previous commenters, I also have a skinny toddler. She's almost 2 1/2 and has been holding steady at 26 lbs for almost a year. She survives on watermelon, toast and air. My pediatrician recommends I make sure she gets a daily vitamin and says "don't worry." I do give her whole-milk yogurt which I think does help.

I want a picture of that cute-ass bean pole.

Jake was really tiny when he was little too, but filled out around 11 years old. He's still thin now but not bony.

I think you're on the right track, just hang in there! Sometimes kids will even pack on a little pudge right before they shoot up in height.

My youngest is like that too. They threatened to send her off for tests when she was one if she didn't gain more weight. Hell, in a society that complains about obesity, they should welcome a skinny kid!

Why not skip the games and just pour him a sippy cup of olive oil?

Better yet, microwave a few scoops of Crisco at every meal.

Right there with you, but I think your son actually eats more than mine. H. has a sweet tooth that we've unfortunately indulged and no interest in veggies or fruit apart from bananas. Gobbles yogurt up and loves peanut butter, so we try to slip shredded carrots into his pb sandwiches. I have lots of questions for the doc at little one's 18 mo. visit in a couple of weeks. Thinking about seeing a nutritionist.

I second the greek yogurt suggestion. You'd think it would be similiar to whole milk yogurt, but... we found one brand (I think it's local to my area of the country) that a pot of it has 14 grams of fat. My boy gobbles that up the rare times that we offer it to him.

Sounds familiar. My kids are thin as well. i think part of the problem is that they are constant moving and burning off whatever they eat. I stopped worrying about my almost 4 yo as well. She seems healthy even though she is just about 30 lbs. My son, on the other hand, has the doctors concerned. he also has a milk allergy so fattening him up has been a challenge. I do the oil thing when I can. I also add non-dairy butter to everything else from his oatmeal to his pop tarts. I usually just throw a variety of food at him and see what sticks.

Kids only gain a few pounds between 2 and 3. My MIL was so freaked out that my son was starving (doesn't help we are vegetarian!). We actually asked the doctor, straight out, told her people were asking...she said he was just fine, he's not underweight or anything, and not to worry.It's only bad if they are LOSING weight.

I have ex-preemie twins, and we struggle with weight and eating issues. We found Greek style yogurt which has LOTS and LOTS of fat and calories. Really packed on the pounds, or ounces.

sausage. nothing better.

I have twin three year olds. One is a beanpole and the other is on the meatier side of thin. I guess he is average. See, we have a hard time with average at our house because my husband and I are well above average. Which is much nicer than saying that we resemble two walruses (walri?) laying in the sun these days.
So we have no idea where the skinny kid and the average kid came from, but for their health's sake, we are happy. We dont sweat it when they can still wear 2T's (hell, skinny twin has a pair of 18 mos. shorts that still fit, although they are rather Daisy-Duke-ish so they are in the Goodwill bag). We do what you are doing as far as making sure that everything we have for them to eat is nutritious, saving junk food for grandparents house. They both get real butter and whole milk and whole milk yogurt. And I tend to slather peanut butter on their bread a little thickly, and put a cheese tray out where they can reach it in the fridge on weekends. But as long as they keep growing up the pediatrician is happy.
ON the other side of it, my ultra-health conscious sister has kids who all tend to the chubby side, despite her vigillance about low-fat, low carb meals and lots of exercise. She struggles mightily with trying to do all of that without making them feel like "chubby" kids or mentioning any kind of weight issues. I would much rather deal with my boney boy.

Can completely relate. You have gone a much healthier route than I did. Kudos to YOU for that. (When Seth was at the 90% in height and 10% in weight and ate next to nothing, he was introduced to McDonald's and chocolate shakes.)

My husband's family all has this killer metabolism, that I would die to get I'm sure. M is taking after them it seems. Guacamole? avocados are great good fats. M seems to want to eat things that are garlicky more, so we use that to get her to be consistant. Don't know where she gets that from...

My boys are now 21 and 18. The oldest was "big" from birth, tall and stocky. He is still tall and stocky. The younger was tall and SKINNY. OMG I thought the child would not survive. He is now 6'3" and way less than 200#...
It will all work out. :)

My four year old has gained 10 pounds since she was 6 months old! (of course, she weighed 25 pounds at 6 months, lol). She eats healthy, but like a bird, lots of snacking, not many big meals. My two year old hasn't gained an ounce since last October, and still hasn't hit 25 pounds. We do lots of cheese and yogurt, real butter, full fat milk, olive oil, coconut oil, etc. Good luck!

My kid is also a chubby-baby-turned-skinny-toddler. He gained less than 1lb at his last well child visit. We do th whole milk Yo Baby yogurt drinks and he seems to like those, but I'm not sure if he's gained any weight. My peditrician isn't stressed, but I am. I can see his ribs, for crying out loud!

We had the same issue with our oldest - 100th percentile in height and 15th in weight ... and we went to many appointments with little or no weight gain from ages 2 - 5 ... he was a string bean. Watching him grow was like watching someone on a "stretcher"! I say all of this because at the age of 11 he is still really tall, but the weight is also now in line (I would love to be as thin as he is).

We had a doctor remind us that with regards to nutrition, he was looking at some other factors like his nails, hair, skin, etc to evaluate the quality of his diet, not just his weight.

As an Italian, any kid who doesn't like noodles is automatically suspected of being a communist until proven otherwise.

Both of my sons have their Dad's metabolism and look like skinned rabbits when naked. I think Docs are so used to kids being overweight that they don't know what to do with a kid who doesn't gain 5 lbs. at a time. My 10 year-old has just hit 70 Lbs. He's healthy and strong (ever seen a 10 year old with six-pack abs?) and he eats more than I do.
My best advice is ice cream or milk shakes. Carnation instant breakfast is also great. As long as they are getting all of their vitamins and eat/grow well, why teach them to stress over weight?

Our nephew was in the 5% range for his weight until he was 7 or 8 then all of a sudden he caught up. I know it's hard not to worry, but if there's no other health issues, I'm sure he's fine. Toddlers like to pull these sorts of mind games on us moms. My first son decided to eat ONLY baby oatmeal, applesauce, and bananas for about 9 months. Then there was the "I won't eat melted cheese" phase. I could go on and on, but he's fine.

Our daughter is in the same situation, she's gained no weight, but has grown two inches taller since her last visit. It's really no fun to get the "hey feed the kid" speech from the Doctor.

I might have to start trying to feed our baby more of those dreaded "fats" starting with whole milk.

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