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How to fatten up by toddler in a healthy way

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
My DD is 18 months old and she is underweight according to her doctor. She is 34 inches long (about 95th percentile) and 20 pounds (about 5th percentile). Her dad and I are both tall and thin so I know that has a lot to do with it but she really could use a little more meat on her bones. She is not a huge eater and she prefers fruits and vegetables. Sometimes I can get her to eat grains and yogurt. She doesn't care much for meat, cheese or cow's milk. She also prefers to eat on the go instead of sitting for a meal.

Anyone have any suggestions for fattening her up with healthy foods?
post #2 of 5
Does she like avacado? At that age my kids loved dipping foods and guacamole was a big hit. I often put it out with some whole wheat pita triangles and they happily snacked as they played, etc. Does she like pasta? Adding a little extra olive oil to her serving and tossing it with the noodles will give her some extra fat too.
post #3 of 5
Lots and lots of good fats. Does she like eggs or fish, particularly salmon? My DD won't eat much meat, but she loves eggs and salmon. You can saute or top her veggies with butter, olive oil, or coconut oil. Also try beans, nut butters, avocado, and hummus. As for fruits, blend them in to yogurt, kefir, or whole milk for a smoothie.
post #4 of 5
If allergies are not a concern, consider adding ground nuts and seeds to the yogurt she will eat or any other smooth consistency (applesauce?). Oatmeal works too. My 17mo DS wouldn't eat when we started foods about nine months and his weight gain was poor. We eventually began adding ground nuts and seeds to yogurt (or anything!). We started with tahini and progressed to pumpkin seeds, almonds, flax seeds, etc. [Also tried wheat germ.] This habit extended to the rest of the family and I try to remember to add these powerhouses of protein, fiber, healthy fat and more to everyone's meals at least once a day. I used guidelines from Super Baby Food (by Ruth Yaron) and Disease Proof Your Child (I know, awful title) by Joel Fuhrman. Yaron's book lists how much fat in a 1 oz serving (e.g. 15g in an ounce of almonds; 13 in an ounce of pumpkin seeds!) and this was helpful. Note that you can roll bites of "wet" fruit pieces (bite of peach, banana, etc) in finely ground nuts/seeds if your daughter will accept the slight change in taste/texture. Makes the pieces easier to pick up, too. I often sprinkle them on top of cut fruit before offering to my son. Agree with PP that avocado was a huge fat source for DD although DS only recently started accepting it as "dip" on a cracker or pita.

Just a reminder with the nuts/seeds that they can go rancid quickly. Some folks recommend grinding only what you'll use immediately while others support freezing. I buy small amounts of bulk, organic seeds/nuts and keep them in the freezer. I grind a few days' worth and keep this in the freezer as well. Best wishes from another tall and thin mama trying to get healthy fats into her skinny kids!!
post #5 of 5
I have a skinny kid too and I'm worried about him. He's about to turn 5, 42" and 34 lbs. I have to take him for his 5 year check up soon. I'm wondering what the doc will say about his skinniness.

I like a lot of the ideas in this thread and will check back for more!
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