Childhood Diseases

Question
Posted by: Kay | 2010/02/26

Q.

Toddler diet

Hi Doc
My 2 year old son is extremely thin. How can I increase his appetite / weight?

His eating pattern when he is not sick
06:00 - 150ml milk
08:00 - porridge - 6-8 TSP
10:00 snack - buscuit
12:00 lunch - protein,carb,veggies - 6TSP
15:00 snack - bread or yogurt
17:30 supper (3/4 TSP) - protein, carb, veggies
19:00 milk (150ml)

When he is sick - which is every 6 weeks
06:00 - 70ml milk
08:00 - porridge - 3 TSP
10:00 snack - buscuit
12:00 lunch - protein,carb,veggies - 2TSP
15:00 snack - bread or yogurt
17:30 supper (0-1 TSP) - protein, carb, veggies
19:00 milk (60ml)
He is being raised vegetarian. I am just worried about his weight loss. At his last inject two weeks ago he weighed 9 kg. He has obvoiusly dropped weight since as he has been sick again.
He is asthamatic (being treated by a specialist), sensitive to milk (everytime I move him to NAN or give him yogurt, he gets sick) and is a picky eater.

What can I use to stimulate his eating habit and his appetite to boost his weight?
I dont give him chocolates or sweets. He does drink juice and eats chips now and again.
Please help me ... I am desperate

Expert's Reply

A.

Paediatrician

The average weight for a 2year old boy is 12.2kg, so you can see that your son's weight of 9kg is very low indeed. In fact his weight is below the lowest line on the children's growth chart. This together with him always being ill is a cause for concern.The diet that you are giving him seems to be quite good,but he is obviously not eating enough.Part of his problem may be his milk and dairy allergy and he may also have other food allergies which have not been diagnosed.Your son has asthma and this is further proof that he needs to be properly tested for allergies.I suggest that you take your son to be seen by a paediatric allergist and he will also need to be seen by a dietician with experience in children's allergies.There are experts in all the main centres in SA.

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