Author Topic: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain  (Read 136058 times)

Offline Twinsplusone

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Hi all,
My 3 yr old boy had a rough start in life (inhaled meconium at birth, two lung surgeries, trached, g-tube, in NICU for almost 4 mos.).  Now he is doing very well and is a normal 3 year old except he weighs only 24 lbs.  (he's 36 in. tall).  He learned to eat on his own last year and we had the feeding tube removed this last Dec.  Long story short, I would like some suggestions on high calorie foods that will help him to gain weight and taste good.  I'm making his milk double strength (adding powdered milk to whole milk), but he's a picky eater and its tough to find things that he likes.  I would welcome any suggestions you may have.  Thanks! 

Sharon
Mom to Caleb, 3 yrs. and Anna & Josiah, 10 1/2 mos.
Mom to Caleb, 3 yrs. and Anna & Josiah, 11 mos.

Offline healthybratt

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Offline dara

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The Maker's Diet suggests smoothies that contian coconut oil- that's a good, higher fat treat. There's also a recipe for p.b. balls in the recipe section.
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Offline mexmarr

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My 18 month daughter weighs only 18 pounds.  I just recently started feeding her fresh cream.  Since we buy raw milk, we always have cream available.  The first time I spoon fed it too her, but after that, I just put it in her sippy cup. 

Another idea I was thinking of trying was Peanut Butter Shakes.  I lost a bunch of weight when I was engaged, and it really brought my weight back up.

In the blender I poured some milk, added peanut butter, powered milk, and a little honey and vanilla.  Any kid should love it!  (and their mommy's too ;))

Avacado is a very healthy high fat thing, too. 

Hope this helps!

Offline refreshed

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #4 on: July 12, 2006, 08:42:17 PM »
Hello!

I just saw this thread and my son is also 3 and has a problem with gaining weight as well.  His problem comes from his food allergies.  Does anyone have any suggestions as to what high calorie, high fat foods I can give him to beef him up?  Everything that has been suggested already on here he is allergic to (peanuts, beans, milk, avocado, soy, eggs, most nuts, legumes).  Anyone have any other ideas? 
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Offline InEverything

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #6 on: July 28, 2006, 07:04:04 AM »
I am posting for my sister in law who is a member but her internet is down.  Her nine mo needs to gain weight and the dr. may recommend hospitalization today.  He is a very happy and active boy so we all feel that he doesn't need drastic measures.
A little backgroud: He has eczema and they have mostly treated it with creams and flaxseed but it has persisted.  She is breastfeeding and started him on solids about a month ago.  At the last checkup the dr. freaked out and told her to give him formula mixed with cereal.  After three weeks he didn't gain an ounce.
Wednesday she wanted them to treat the eczema with antibiotics and cortisone cream.  Under pressure and confusion and worry they agreed to try that.  The dr. also wanted her to switch to all formula but my SIL knew better.  Her milk does seem to have a good fat content.
The ezcema does look better with the antibiotics and cream. 
My quesition is if he may have candida at that age?  Should she continue the antibiotics?  What about tummy tune up?  She is going to try more high quality fats and see what the doctor suggests. Nothing has showed up on the blood tests.
Any suggestions would help and prayer for discernment today at the dr.
(they don't vaccinate either) Thanks!
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Offline his.silly.wife

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #7 on: July 28, 2006, 07:39:22 AM »
What do they consider under weight?  It has been a few years since I looked into it, but most growth charts are produced by formula companies and reflect the growth of formula-fed babies.  Therefore, the breastfed baby is usually underweight, unless mama has jersey-cow level cream in her milk.

Try dressing the child in only cotton, no synthetic materials.  My one daughter had very sensitive skin and would get a rash from anything but cotton.  Through boosting her immune system, after several years she can wear almost anything, but I lean toward mostly cotton clothing for her.

All my children are smaller than their peers.  I'm short, and my dh was skinny as a child, so that is what I expect for our children.  Heredity should be considered. 

I'm still learning about candida, so I can't help there. I will keep you in my prayers this afternoon.
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Offline healthybratt

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #8 on: July 28, 2006, 08:20:58 AM »
Yes, he can have candida at this age.  Mom probably has it too.  Tummy tuneup would almost be a must at this point if they gave him antibiotics. 

If it were me, I would up the fats in my diet (unhydrogenated healthy fats), eat more protein, less carbs and take Tummy Tune-up until I saw a marked improvement in the weight and the eczema. 

She might want to also consider not using any kind of detergents.  These soak through the skin and into the bloodstream.  Baby could be getting it from the laundry, his baby bath or from mom's shampoo.  There are several threads about this.  Do a search for "detergent", "SLS", "shampoo", "baby bath" and "laundry".  You should find lots of helpful information in these threads.
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Offline dara

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #9 on: July 28, 2006, 08:58:14 AM »
Has she tried going off all dairy products herself to see if he's allergic to cow milk, even in her milk? There are a slew of things she can try in the eczema thread...

Some healthy fats she could give him (IMO) would be avocados (my baby likes them spooned out of the shell), coconut oil (can be added to her milk in a bottle- it will separate, but can be shaken often; non-pomace olive oil would be OK in a pinch, but I have never used that in milk for a baby myself). I would be leery of giving him anything from cows, like butter, because of the eczema, but my kids have allergies. Does he look skinny, or just small for his age? Some kids just don't get big fast. My niece is 2 and weighs the same as my 11 mo. old.
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Offline SC

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #10 on: July 28, 2006, 12:24:35 PM »
My little boy didn't gain weight well, either. The pediatrician was SURE that it was because of my milk. I persisted and refused to supplement with formula, much to the dr.'s dismay. My gut told me that something was using up the calories. We found out later that he had an underlying condition, and it was a miracle that he was gaining AT ALL -- not a problem that he was gaining slowly.

Babies need fat stores in order to develop normally. I would watch carefully for signs of dehydration or listlessness. I would also trust Mama's Instinct. If your SIL believes that it is her milk, or there is something else going on, then I would investigate in that direction. If she wants to test her milk, you can contact a lactation consultant at your local hospital for information on how to go about doing that. If mama suspects that something else is going on, then she should call and get in to see a specialist. I had to find and talk my way into a pediatric cardiologist's office. For us, it could have been a disaster to place our little one on formula as his health was truly fragile.

For me, the gauge of the seriousness of the condition lies in how the mother sees her child. How does he compare to her other children and/or nieces and nephews at that same age? Is the mother anxious over his condition? IMO When an experienced mama gets concerned, it's time to test until you get to the bottom of the matter. If the symptoms are treated without knowing the cause, it could mask something more serious or prolong the condition needlessly.

Just my
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Offline jamieandsamuelsmom

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #11 on: July 28, 2006, 02:20:25 PM »
If the baby is active and meeting developmental milestones his weight may be appropriate for him.  But you might also try looking at the new WHO growth charts based on a sample of 8,400 exclusively breastfed babies in 6 countries. The sample was of children of nonsmoking mothers with adequate food and healthcare.   http://www.who.int/childgrowth/en/

Jen

Offline Mrs. Dugger

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #12 on: October 12, 2006, 05:51:28 AM »
I have a 21-month old who has only gained one pound since she was a year old.  Up until that time she was in the 95% for weight and height -- a very chubby girl.  Now she looks like normal toddler, thinner, and a lot taller.  She's grown in height and is developmentally normal.  She's very active and eats a lot, no junk food, but I don't know if the lack of weight gain is something I should be worried about or not.  I was hoping some of you more experienced moms could let me know if this is normal or what I should do about it if it is not.  Thanks :)

Offline nursegirl

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #13 on: October 12, 2006, 06:11:48 AM »
Sounds fine to me.  She's probably still normal for weight.  Considering all the other things you said, (eats fine, developmentally normal, etc.) I wouldn't worry about it.  A lot of toddlers slim down once they start walking.  If you are concerned, just check her again in a few months.

Sarah

Offline his.silly.wife

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #14 on: October 12, 2006, 06:21:48 AM »
From my experience, my babies are chubby, but once they start running, the baby fat starts to dwindle.  Junk food tends to make children chunky, but a mostly healthy diet doesn't have the extra empty calories.

Consider genetics, do you have a large or small build?  What about your husband?  That will influence your childs growth pattern.
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Offline healthybratt

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #15 on: October 12, 2006, 01:17:10 PM »
As long as you are sure, that she is eating healthy - lots of good fats, vitamins, etc, I wouldn't be the slightest bit worried.  All babies gain at different rates and they generally go in spurts.  One of mine is in the 25% and the other is in the 95%, but they are both very healthy children and rarely get sick.   ;D
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Offline chopchop

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #16 on: October 12, 2006, 02:59:48 PM »
It sounds like she might possibly be like my bio babies.  I must have rich breastmilk because they are soo roly poly and squishable when I am nursing.  (and I didn't nurse on demand)
 Then after they quit nursing they just don't gain any weight for a long time. They start growing up, instead of out   ;).  Neither are skinny, and both are high energy and have great appetities and eat healthy food. Still, the waists of most pants are too big for them.  I guess it is because so much of America even little kids are heavy/overweight.
If that is the case with yours, don't worry.  If you notice lethargy, or other negative things then you would want to look into more.  But if she is happy and active, and not sickly in any way then I wouldn't worry.

Offline healthyinOhio

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #17 on: October 12, 2006, 03:52:42 PM »
She either has a parasitic infestation, or she is perfectly normal.  Take your pick!!  ;)
My son was a very fat breast-fed baby.  He was 30lbs at one year of age.  He was 30lbs for two years straight!!  He also only grew a couple of inches.  He went down to the 1 and 2 percentile for weight and height after being at 99 as an infant.   
He was tested for parasites and it came back negative, but the doctor said he is in like the 50th percentile for both, now,  and he is four and still only weighs 34 lbs.  Seems a little slower than I would like it, but perhaps God has chosen him to be short and skinny for awhile.

Offline ShabbyChic

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #18 on: October 12, 2006, 04:09:05 PM »
Ditto to what chopchop said.  Don't worry with percentiles.  Look at what they are eating and how much they are moving around.

My 6 month old weighs 21 lbs.  And my 27 month old weighs 34 lbs, but he's weighed 34 lbs. since he was 18 months old.  He has finally tapered off.  I'm hoping my baby tapers soon because he's wearing 18 mo. sized clothing! 

By the way, I am 5'3" 102 lbs. and my husband is 6'1" 150 lbs.  We are lean folks now, but were both stout breastfed babies, too.
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Offline firecattx

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #19 on: March 13, 2007, 07:19:37 AM »
I have a 16 month old who only weighs 19 and a half pounds.  The dr. is dismayed that there hasn't been more of a weight gain.  He was born 7lbs. 14oz so he wasn't a small or premature baby.  He has never lost weight, just gains at a painstakingly slow rate.  He is still nursing and that is fine with me.  He will eat a few bites of different foods but for the most part just likes to squish it through his fingers. He will knock the spoon away as we try to feed him. I dread putting food on his tray because I know he will just play with it (none of my other kids did this). I'm starting to wonder if there are some sensory issues.  What can I do in the way of supplements to help him gain weight.  I am getting pressure to feed him junk (that i would normally never do) in order to put some weight on him.  I am a beginner at herbs/supplements etc. so any advice would be appreciated!

Offline his.silly.wife

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #20 on: March 13, 2007, 07:49:43 AM »
Try this link:
http://www.7xsunday.net/forum/index.php/topic,580.0.html

I remember reading a thread that was very similar to your situation, but I can't find it.  Maybe someone else will remember where it is.
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Offline zmama

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #21 on: March 13, 2007, 08:00:58 AM »
I have a 16 month old who only weighs 19 and a half pounds.  The dr. is dismayed that there hasn't been more of a weight gain.  He was born 7lbs. 14oz so he wasn't a small or premature baby.  He has never lost weight, just gains at a painstakingly slow rate.  He is still nursing and that is fine with me.  He will eat a few bites of different foods but for the most part just likes to squish it through his fingers. He will knock the spoon away as we try to feed him. I dread putting food on his tray because I know he will just play with it (none of my other kids did this). I'm starting to wonder if there are some sensory issues.  What can I do in the way of supplements to help him gain weight.  I am getting pressure to feed him junk (that i would normally never do) in order to put some weight on him.  I am a beginner at herbs/supplements etc. so any advice would be appreciated!

A couple of things I thought of here.  One, I have five children and my second had sensory issues.  She had difficulty nursing and would not nurse long enough to get the hind milk.  Therefore, she was borderline failure-to-thrive.  Even after going back to a 2-3 hour nursing schedule round the clock for months on end, she was still no better.  Out of desperation, I was forced to put her on formula.  It took about a day to get her to take a bottle but she then guzzled it like she was starving.  But she still could not eat solids.  Finally, she was referred to a speech therapist for an evaluation and she qualified for therapy.  They taught her how to eat solids as well as different temperatures of food/drink (she had two different issues goign on there).  The way we knew it was sensory was that she would gag on any food that touched her tongue and often vomit anything that made it to the back of her throat for swallowing.  Even baby cereal made her gag but for sure any food wiht the least bit of texture.  Is your son doing anything like that?  What kinds or textures of foods does he eat?  She's 7 and even now, she's very funny about the texture of her food or says certain foods "hurt her throat."

How often does he nurse...could it be that for his age, he's nursing too often to be hungry?  I'd try holding his hands down and see if he will take anything off a spoon from you.  Make sure he's good and hungry first.  Try softer foods with very little texture.  I was told to grind up meats and veggies and then "wrap or bind" them in pureed baby fruit to hide the texture.  It took about a month of doing that and she was eating everything. They also had us give her textured toys to roll around in her mouth...a baby toothbrush while sitting in the high chair for safety.

Other thought--I have a friend whose baby is the same age as your son.  Nursed till just a few weeks ago because her mama is pregnant and very ill with morning sickness.  She also is not gaining weight (17 pounds).  Also ate very little. This concerned the doctor and so she was tested for lead and it was positive.  They got lead testing kits and found their mini blinds and other things in the house were full of lead.  Also the crystal glasses they drank from at dinner--it passed through her breast milk--were a major culprit.  I recently read somewhere that toys from other countries can have lead in them and babies are always putting toys in their mouth.

HTH!

Offline Homecharmer

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #22 on: March 13, 2007, 08:46:43 AM »
Wow! I have a somewhat similar issue. My son is 16 months old also, and he weighs between 19 and 20 pounds and is still breastfeeding. Interestingly, though, he doesn't have an eating problem. He eats well (probably not a ton compared to a lot of kids). I was worried since he is about 5% on the growth charts, but my friends and doctor have really encouraged me not to worry about comparing him so much. He has a ton of energy and runs around all the time. I am saying this just to let you know that you are not alone, and as far as I can tell, my son is very healthy.  Sometimes I wonder if the reason he is smaller is that he is still breastfed rather than getting formula, he doesn't get sugars or juices, and his meat is without hormones. I hope things go better for you with the eating!
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Offline healthybratt

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #23 on: March 13, 2007, 12:15:31 PM »
How's your diet?  Are you getting enough fats, proteins?  too many sugars?  Do you have candida issues and/or leaky gut? 

He may be just fine - charts don't know everything, but if you as the mama are concerned about his low weight, then you have to consider he's getting all his nutrition from you and if you're not eating right and/or healthy, he won't be either.
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Offline hollyolly123

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #24 on: March 13, 2007, 03:43:54 PM »
I completely ignore the weight gain stuff.  I'd be worried about the doctor trying to force something on my kid that we would find out 10 years down the road wasn't good for him.  I have a 15 month old who is twenty pounds, and has been so for at least three months.  She is at the stage where she is lengthening and less fat because she is walking around and climbing on stuff, not just sitting in her high chair getting fatter....boy, was she fat!  The doctor probably would have told me to stop nursing her because she was too fat- or else thought I was feeding her butter!  I nursed her completely for the first six months, then introduced some solids, which I lament because I gave her too many grains at first, but now I know better.

If he looks healthy and is active enough, IMO, ignore the doctor.  I really believe they mean well, but I also believe they are very confused about a few things and I blame the education provided to them by the heads of major corporations (they are on the boards of directors at the schools, and write the curriculums too).

I really like the book "How to Keep Your Child Healthy, In Spite of your Doctor" By Dr. Mendelson, a pediatrician for at least 30 years who has seen some bad trends, and enough to make sense of it all.  He gives practical advice and medical/ biological understanding so you can confidently take care of your child's body and know when and how to treat at home, and when it really is time to go to the doctor.

Our family has decided not to do "well baby" visits.  We also do not vaccinate.  We believe they are our children, not wards of the state or the hospital they were born in, and we are not answerable to those people save for the just laws of the land.  I'd encourage you to do a little research so at least you know enough about children's health  not to be at the mercy of the whims of a doctor, no matter how kind and well meaning.  I'm not trying to insult doctors, I know there are plenty of good ones out there, like Dr. Mendelson.

Offline Sarah

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #25 on: March 13, 2007, 04:53:11 PM »
My son is also 16 months and around 20 pounds.  We had failure to thrive problems with him and narrowed it down to food allergies.  We had him on some special high calorie formula for a couple of months but weren't comfortable with it at all.  We decided to break away from the doctor who freaked out about everything and do our own thing.  Now every morning we make a drink for him with a whole banana, several heaping scoops of plain yogurt, some rice milk and a good protein drink.  He loves it and has started to gain well on it.  Like others have said though.  If he is happy and active don't worry too much about it. 

Offline seeker

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #26 on: March 13, 2007, 05:03:43 PM »
I have a 16 month old who only weighs 19 and a half pounds.  The dr. is dismayed that there hasn't been more of a weight gain.  He was born 7lbs. 14oz so he wasn't a small or premature baby.  He has never lost weight, just gains at a painstakingly slow rate.  He is still nursing and that is fine with me.  He will eat a few bites of different foods but for the most part just likes to squish it through his fingers. He will knock the spoon away as we try to feed him. I dread putting food on his tray because I know he will just play with it (none of my other kids did this). I'm starting to wonder if there are some sensory issues.  What can I do in the way of supplements to help him gain weight.  I am getting pressure to feed him junk (that i would normally never do) in order to put some weight on him.  I am a beginner at herbs/supplements etc. so any advice would be appreciated!
We have a 9 month old and have been dealing with the weight gain issue for about 8 months now. She is barely even on "the chart". She gains so s-l-o-w-l-y. She was 6 pounds 2 ounces at birth and had almost gained back her birth weight by 2 weeks. Since then, she has never gained weight as quickly as the doctor wants her to. My baby hates food. I have tried to get her to eat food, just to see if it helps with the weight gain issue. So far it hasn't. I have tried supplements for myself, hoping that it will get to her through my breast milk, but that hasn't helped her gain weight either. The only supplement that I have given her directly is CLO, but I have a lot of trouble getting that down her. She seems normal in every other way.  At her 9 month check-up, the pediatrician said that she has stayed on her growth curve and is meeting her milestones, and that's what we need to watch. She is just over 13 pounds at 9 months. You are your baby's mom, so you know what's best to feed him. If you don't think the "junk" others want you to feed him is good for him, then don't give it to him.  ;)

Offline firecattx

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #27 on: March 14, 2007, 04:10:05 AM »
Quote
How's your diet?  Are you getting enough fats, proteins?  too many sugars?  Do you have candida issues and/or leaky gut)

Quote
I am so new to supplements, healthy eating etc. that I have no idea what I have!  I do not take anything except for generic vitamins.  My diet is so-so, probably too many sugars as I love sweets.  I do not know where to start to work on my health so nursing can be more beneficial for him. Is there a good book for beginners etc? I struggle with anxiety so I'm sure I would benefit for some health changes!

If you can find the book "Eat Fat Lose Fat", I would highly recommend you read it.  It will give you all kinds of information on healthy fats and why you need them.  You can also glean much information in this forum.  Here are some links to get you started.

Begin/Start a Healthier Diet/Lifestyle

Depression, Anxiety and other Neurological/Mental Disorders

Candida / Yeast: Symptoms & Cures
Treating Children for Candida/Yeast
Candida Cleanse Without Supplements
Treating Candida/Yeast While Pregnant
Foods to Eat While Taking Yeast Assassin [or Other Antifungals]
Natural Antifungals
Die-Off from Candida/Yeast: Causes, Effects, Risks & Reduction
Leaky Gut:  The Cause of it All?

This link includes a list of symptoms that would be indicative of candida and/or leaky gut.

I Think I Have Candida and/or Leaky Gut:  What Now?



« Last Edit: March 14, 2007, 05:18:34 AM by healthybratt »

Offline hollyolly123

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #28 on: March 14, 2007, 07:22:54 AM »
I think it is worth mentioning that not all doctors are "on the same page."  Some are still using the information they learned 10, 20, or 30 years ago, or more.  This could be good or bad.  Many are up to date on the most current info about babie's health, which could be good or bad.  The info comes from the medical schools, so whatever rabbit trail or fad they are involved in is what the doctors get.  But there are many doctors who walk with their eyes open and know what a healthy baby looks like, regardless of the charts and newest nutrition/ supplement/ drug/ formula fashion.  It is important that we walk with our eyes open too, and do the research for ourselves, not taking a doctor's or a friend's word for it unless it is based on experience that you can see.  Mommy (or Daddy) usually does know best.

Offline morningglory

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Re: Underweight Infants & Toddlers: Healthy Supplements For Weight Gain
« Reply #29 on: March 19, 2007, 07:23:34 PM »
My son is the same age and is only a little over 20 lbs.  He keeps getting taller without gaining more than a fraction of a pound every couple of months.  He started the whole eating strike thing, and I completely freaked out.  He would hardly eat anything, including stuff that he loved the day before.  What finally worked was giving him new foods or foods he hadn't eaten in a while.  If I gave him the same thing 2 days in a row, he wouldn't touch it.  And if he wanted all dried fruit one day and all cereal the next, that's what I would feed him.  The other thing that helped was we stopped feeding him at the table.  I would just hand him a cracker while he played, and he ate without thinking about it.  I would also give him a snack cup with dried figs or fried egg or whatever, and he carried it around with him and ate it that way.  I know that's probably not good long term, but it worked for a quick fix.  He also ate more once he had his own eating utensils.  He can't use them very well, but it encouraged him to eat anyway.  He's back to eating normal meals (for now).  The more of an issue you make of it, the more they resist.  My son still hasn't gained much weight, but he's happy and healthy and bright, so I don't worry about it.  Plus, he's the spitting image of his daddy, and that means lean and tall.  Every kid is different!  Having said that, some doctors are not used to breastfed babies, and they tend to be leaner than formula fed babies.