Eating Habits and Weight Gain

Alisha - posted on 06/03/2010 ( 11 moms have responded )

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I was wondering how much weight should toddlers gain at this age. My daughter used to eat everything, but her eating habits change everyday. One day she'll eat dinner, and the next she's spitting it out and throwing her food on the floor. She barely drinks milk anymore and is starting to refuse water. She hasn't gained any weight in the last 5 months, and I am becoming worried. She weighs 24.5 pounds and is almost 34 inches. The doctor gave us high calorie foods we could give her, but she only wants the junk food. I really don't want to feed her junk food, just so she can gain weight---because that is the start of an unhealthy lifestyle. Any tips on getting her to eat better? I'd also like to know the weight of your toddlers and their patterns of weight gain. Thanks!

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Kathy - posted on 06/20/2010

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My daughter is EXTREMELY picky with all foods. One day she will eat grapes the next she throws it to the dog..She weights 26 pounds. When I have tried everything except force feeding her lol I give her a cup of pediasure as a replacement. She loves it.Have to watch tho that it doesnt become an every day \every meal thing but will put your mind at ease. Dr told me that This age they are all picky eaters :)

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My son just turned 21 months and eats like a little bird....he only weights 21 pounds 4 ounces. He is the baby of 5 boys...who are all small as well. Dr says he's just built like the rest of the family. In a world where obesity is now the norm...the small ones are now the minority...doesn't mean there is anything wrong with them.

Chanda - posted on 06/16/2010

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I have the same issues. But I did with all of my my oldest 2 also! Right now my nearly 22 month old wont hardly eat anything. Including cookies! lol Unlike most of these babies mentioned she is 35 1/2 inches and 35 1/2 pounds! Addy is off the growth chart altogether. Every baby goes through this. it is normal and it will pass. And FYI small babies don't always mean small people or vice versa. I have an eleven year old daughter that I thought was the fattest baby ever! Now she is a tall thin sting bean like her mother lol.

Christina - posted on 06/15/2010

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My son is like this too. He is 25 lbs and 34 inches long. I was worried too but when i took him to the dr the other day she said he is fine. he eats alot at times and sometimes he goes through the period when he doest want to. As long as the dr says he is fine then i try not to worry.

Karen - posted on 06/15/2010

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OMG I'm soooo glad its not just my child that does this! I thought it was just him but it must be the age they are at, I'm just hoping that he will grow out of it. I found that he likes chicken nuggets and fish cakes so am going to try making some vege patties and breadcrumbing them in the hope that he will try them :)

Alisha - posted on 06/14/2010

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Thanks for all of the comments. It puts me at ease somewhat. Her doctor giving us the high calorie food list, and our family members and friends telling us how skinny she is and how we need to feed her, didn't add to our positivity. My concern was that she hasn't gained any weight in about 6 months---maybe even lost a pound. She always wants something to drink---water, chocolate milk, etc, and I'm worried that she's only filling up on the liquids. It is summer time now and I don't want to deprive her of fluids if she is thristy, but I still want her to eat. Sometimes she'll just eat a small lunch and wake up around midnight saying that she wants to eat. But we're working on it. It is very challenging, because you want the best for your child. But like you guys said....every child is different!

Nonie - posted on 06/10/2010

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My son only weighs about 23-25 pounds but is also about 34 inches high at 22 months. I had the same concern, and his eating habits are so sporadic, but he is VERY active and energetic. Otherwise he is completely normal, our doctor even commented that as a society we get so use to seeing chunky babies and worrying about what not to feed them. When we see a skinny one we tend to think something's wrong, but as long as the other indicators are normal (happy, responsive, active, etc) than I wouldn't be too concerned.

Jacqueline - posted on 06/10/2010

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They go thru stages, sometimes they will eat everything you put in front of them the next they want nothing. My daughter is just like that. She is just like the way i was growing up. Short and skinny. She only goes thru two growth spurts a year. if that. She is 20 months old and has been on the VERY LOW end of the percentiles ever since she was 10-12 months old. I tried the high calorie diet, I tried the baby ensure drinks, you name it we tried it. So i simply just go with my own opinion now. I buy her high protien enriched foods, she eats 3 meals a day, 2 snacks times a day and has her big kid vitamins too. She is still my short skinny little toddler. And thats that! :O)

Jennifer - posted on 06/07/2010

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My daughter is the same way. she used to be able to eat alot and at anytime of day she would eat. lately she eats much smaller amounts and also throws her food on the floor which drives me crazy!! but i dont think you have anything to worry about. my daughter weighs 28 pounds and is alittle shorter, but everyone is always telling me how chunky she is. this may just be a temporary thing. dont give into the junk food though, that will not be a temorary thing once its started.. offer alot of snacks though out the day and share snacks! my daughter and i share an apple and graham crackers in the afternoon and she loves to feed me apple slices. all i can say is dont get to stressed out over how much she weighs all kids grow at different rates and have times where they wont eat anything you offer.

Jennifer - posted on 06/07/2010

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My 2 boys are at the low end, but when you think about it, all babies are different and what's normal for 1 may not be normal for another. My 2nd eats more then my 1st at his age, but even still, there are days when he just doesn't eat much. The way I understand it, when going through a physical growth spurt, they will eat, but when it's a mental growth spurt, they are not growing much physically and so they don't need to eat as much. A child will not let himself go hungry. They, unlike most adults, eat when they are hungry. That's the way it should be, I think. We are preconditioned to eat 3 meals a day at certain times of the day, but in my own personal experience, I found that when I truely listened to my body, I only needed 2 good sized meals a day, and I was fine with just a glass of water for super. I would say just keep an eye on her. If her behavior changes, she isn't as active as before, seems kinda sickly, then I'd be concerned. Otherwise, she's a normal toddler :o)

Melissa - posted on 06/05/2010

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It doesn't sound like she's underweight, is she? It's normal to have toddlers this age be so picky and inconsistent with eating. Just be persistent. You have to introduce some foods to a child 20-30 times before they like them and willingly eat them. And you're definitely right about not giving junk foods. It will quickly lead to inflammation, obesity, and diabetes in the body. Healthy habits are much better. My son LOVES french fries, which I never even wanted to give him, but I was a bad example a few times... I had to put my foot down though, and even if he screams at a meal, I won't let him have any until he has eaten a fruit or vegetable and a protein (for example, at a restaurant where I'll order him roasted chicken and fruit, but I have a sandwich and fries). Then I explain to him that he was a good eater, and we can have little bits of bad foods sometimes if we eat our healthy ones. Not that he fully understands yet, but hopefully along the way. Also, offer small bits of food many times in a day, rather than sitting down for 3 meals. Toddlers are grazers, which is good for our metabolism anyway, and not a bad idea, as long as you're eating at the table and not snacking in front of the TV. My son is very big for his age. He weighs 31 lbs and is tall, so I'm not sure what the low end weight should be. Just stick with it, none of this is easy! I get so frustrated when I try to prepare a meal, and and up making like 6 things so he'll eat. Also, sometimes the gimicky foods work, like my sons favorite.. chicken soup with Elmo shaped noodles. Sometimes, when he's making a fuss, I just don't push it, and we try eating again later. Good luck!

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