Do not let children drink a lot of water before eating, limit empty calories, eat many small meals a day … help promote appetite, healthy weight gain.
There are many causes of low birth weight in children. In infancy, the child’s failure to grow may be due to feeding problems, such as: difficulty with breastfeeding, allergies to ingredients in milk, reflux. Children of all ages may experience delays in growth due to: allergies or food intolerances; ill; dental problems; digestive condition; behavioral, developmental, or neurological problems.
Besides, some drugs can also interfere with appetite, causing weight loss in children. Medications for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) can have a side effect of reducing appetite. If parents think the drug is affecting their child’s appetite or weight gain, consult a pediatrician. Parents are advised not to stop any medication suddenly.
Sometimes, low birth weight in children can simply be because they are not absorbing enough calories for their age. Active, growing babies may need more energy, for example, prepubertal boys often need the same amount of calories as adults.
However, the positive sign is that regardless of the cause of the child’s slow weight gain, parents can control their child’s growth with diet. Experts recommend using a variety of foods rich in nutrients and calories that contribute to nutritious meals, helping children gain healthy weight.
In which, protein includes red meat (beef, pig, buffalo); white meat (chicken, geese, duck); pork sausage, pork ribs, bacon, ham; fatty fish (salmon, mackerel, tuna, snakehead, basa); nuts, nut butters (pecans, walnuts, almonds, chia seeds, flaxseeds); legumes (tofu, pea milk, lentils, peanuts, peas); egg…
Dairy products include: milk, yogurt, cheese, fermented milk… Fats include olive oil, avocado oil, canola oil, butter, mayonnaise… Carbohydrates such as: rice, noodle soup , whole wheat bread, corn, potatoes, sweet potatoes, cereals rich in fiber… Vegetables include: bananas, avocados, oranges, coconuts, grapes… green vegetables. Beverages include: smoothies with important ingredients such as full-fat yogurt, nut butter, coconut milk…; chocolate milk, hot cocoa with whole milk…
To promote baby’s appetite, parents can try the tips below.
Do not give your child too much water
Hydration is important for children from infancy to adolescence. But sometimes babies drinking too much water can reduce the amount of space in the belly. To increase the appetite before meals, parents should let their children eat first, drink water later. In addition, avoid sugary drinks such as soft drinks and fruit juices because they contain sugar that is not good for the health and brain of the child.
Feed your child whenever he or she is hungry
For children who have difficulty gaining weight, allowing children to eat at any time of the day can be an acceptable way to promote appetite, rather than forcing children to eat the right meals and snacks.
Eat several small meals a day
This is a strategy that goes hand in hand with the pattern above. Instead of a strict breakfast, lunch, and dinner schedule, parents can feed their children many small meals throughout the day. Your baby can absorb more calories by eating 6-8 small meals a day than eating three meals.
Limit your child’s intake of many empty calories
Foods like soft drinks, chips and fast food can cause weight gain, but these options are often low in nutrients and are not healthy for your baby. Therefore, choose foods that contain many nutrients necessary for the growth and development of children.
Add healthy calorie-rich foods
Parents should not choose “child-friendly” packaged products because the reality is not what it is advertised. Instead, experts recommend incorporating high-calorie foods into your daily diet. Nut butters, avocados, coconut milk and many other healthy, high-calorie ingredients can be made into smoothies for kids to eat between meals.
Don’t limit children’s movement
Basically, weight gain is a calculation between calories taken in and calories burned. As a result, some parents tend to limit their children’s daily activities. But children need a lot of exercise. Unless advised by a doctor, parents should not limit their child’s activity.
Consult a nutritionist
Seeking help from a dietitian, especially a pediatrician, can make all the difference. With expertise in child nutrition, pediatric specialists can guide parents to make the best choices for their child’s diet.
Chau Vu (Follow Healthline)