High calorie diet for 1-year-old

User - posted on 04/27/2009 ( 11 moms have responded )

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My 12.5 month old has been put on a high calorie diet in the hopes of helping her gain weight quickly. Any ideas of high calorie, yet nutritious foods I can try? I've already been instructed to put heavy whipping cream in her whole milk, to give her regular yogurt, and to put butter/oil on anything I can.

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Martha - posted on 04/28/2009

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Quoting Smarty:

People are misinformed that fat puts on fat. Yes, too much fat contributes to getting 'fat' - but it is the excess calories IN the fat that does that.

Our bodies need calories for energy. Any calories that are not burned by activity are, in turn, stored by our body as fat (reserve energy).

I grew up in the bodybuilding culture and when athletes want to trim their body fat, the cut the carbs. So, my recommendation is to go high on the carbs for your baby girl. Lots of oatmeal. Wheat bread. Bagels cut into chunks. Roasted potatoes. Pasta with red sauce. Peanut butter, avocados, french toast, multigrain cereals, yogurt, whole milk, cheese. Try to stay minimize the butter and heavy cream as your staple simply because the cholesterol is high and not good for our little ones. But, again, adding extra complex carbohydrates that are found in natural, whole foods (as opposed to "empty" carbs found in cookies, white breads, crackers, chips, and other processed foods) in conjunction with her fats and protein (salmon is another source of good fat) :) will increase her calories with the whole foods her body will FLOURISH on. (You want her to gain weight, NOT get "fat".)

Just think: a perfect meal of french toast, a bowl of yogurt, and a glass of whole milk. Or potatoes with grated cheese and some peas. Or peanut butter whole grain toast with milk and an apple. :) Or half an avocado with bagel chunks and some fresh banana. Yummy!


Actually, the reason doctors recommend whole milk for toddlers (besides the higher calorie density) is that they need the cholesterol for brain development.

Amber - posted on 07/13/2013

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We met with a dietician on the same subject. Our little lady is 13.5 mo old. They suggested avocados, beans, such as black beans or kidney beans and bananas as healthy high cal foods. I made a quick purée the other day that my daughter seems to like. I did 1/4 cup black beans, 1/4 cup green peas and half a pear in a magic bullet and she ate the whole thing. The next day I did something similar with an apple. I've also smashed an avocado with a pear before too and she liked that. If you don't have a magic bullet, I think any blend or or just mashing them together with a fork would do. Other options are some king of shakes with whole milk yogurt, bananas, avocado and some fruits.

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Amber - posted on 07/13/2013

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Sorry, should spell check before I post.
Also, they mentioned adding some butter or canola oil to some food too

Lynda - posted on 04/28/2009

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what foods does she like ? cheese can be put with most things. you need to be carefull about salt though with some high calorie foods.Meat such as corned beef has alot of fat

Rachel - posted on 04/28/2009

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i would say allot of carbs... every diet bans them because they make the body store fat... i wouldnt give sugary foods as they will only cause a spike in insulan within the body and you will end up with a cranky, tired, and then hyper bub....lots of white pasta, potatoe, bread, milk and milky dishes...and regular yoghurt,.. well babies dont really need diet anything anyway.

good luck

Emily - posted on 04/27/2009

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SOme people whose kids are on high calorie diets make the mistake of filling them up with empty calories and foods that are counter productive. I think it is great that you are determined not to do that. Why trade one health problem for a more serious one? Olive oil is the oil I would use in cooking because it is full of good fats. Avocados are as well. Any kind of foods that make you think "comfort food" probably would help her bulk up. Also remember that some kids (and people) are just naturally leaner.

Martha - posted on 04/27/2009

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My daughter started falling off her growth curve around 1 yr, too, although not dramatically enough to require a formal high calorie diet. She was just so active she didn't have time to eat, and I, trying to be a good mom, had been giving her lean meats, fruits, veggies, and whole grains. Apparently this wasn't enough for her. Anyway to answer your question . . . One thing she enjoyed was cream cheese (full fat of course) in her spinach. I also put cream cheese on graham crackers - that was a big hit. Avocados are another fatty food. Put guacamole on whole grain chips. My daughter was a big fan of yogurt. She ate that for her snack nearly every afternoon. You'll have to ask your doctor, but since she's over a year it might be ok for her to have peanut butter. There are also other nut butters like nutella or almond butter. Best wishes!

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Try lasanga or baked ziti made with whole milk ricotta and lots of other cheeses. You can add olive oil to the sauce to increase the fat. Has she tried whole milk cottage cheese? Use lots of real butter on cooked noodles and vegetables. You can also use heavy whipping cream to make homemade ice cream if you have an ice cream freezer. Some recipes for homemade custards call for heavy whipping cream. I would stir a little of the whipping cream in to the yogurt to add some extra fat and calories.

Lorena - posted on 04/27/2009

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Hi, seems like they put your baby on the anti-diet diet. I was an extremely picky eater and was very skinny as a kid and my mother essentially gave me anything I would eat. Lots of whole dairy, and carbs. If your honey likes pasta its a sure deal. Of course you have to make sure there's some protein and veggies in there too, a cream based pasta with chicken and veggies would be ideal.Also avoid foods that aren't much more than water, such as watermelon, cucumber, celery etc.these will just fill her up and not bulk her up. I have a great recipe book with some good ideas, take a look at Annabel Karmel's cookbook for babies, she has great pasta ideas and some nice deserts too like rice pudding.

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