Please tell me its okay to have a skinny-mini toddler. - Mothering Forums
Life with a Toddler > Please tell me its okay to have a skinny-mini toddler.
newmothermary's Avatar newmothermary 01:06 AM 07-09-2010
You ladies are probably tired of me worrying over this but...

Miles is 16 mos and still not eating a whole lot of food. He still nurses but he's so skinny. He will eat every meal, but not a lot of it.

As always, he's very happy, active, hitting milestones and learning everyday. I tried to offer as much as I can but its really hit or miss whether he'll eat. So far the only thing he'll eat consistently is cheerios with yogurt. Not the staple I was hoping for but I just don't know what options I have.


This is Miles (with mommy)

QuestionGal's Avatar QuestionGal 03:05 AM 07-09-2010
1) links aren't working (you have to change your FB settings to allow "everyone" to see your photos)

2) look at the whole baby/picture. If he is: hitting his milestones, active, bright eyed, alert, sleeps well, has plenty wet/dirty diapers, normal poops, etc then you are FINE.

My DS was large at birth but grew VERY slowly...he's barely on the growth chart but he has an actual "curve" if you plot his height/weight lines. So he IS growing just not a chunky kid. After all, *somebody* has to be at the bottom of the curve or that wouldn't be the bottom. ya know?

Look at mom & dad...what's their build like? In our case DS is exactly like fact their growth charts are almost identical and *shocker* DH is tall & lean.
azzeps's Avatar azzeps 03:26 AM 07-09-2010
If you are offering meals and snacks at regular intervals throughout the day, that's all you can do. Children will grow the way they are meant to grow. I think it helps to be more cognizant of offering foods that are more calorie-dense than perhaps we would choose for ourselves, but other than that, it sounds like he's doing fine. I know, my little girl was big at birth and 95%-98% throughout her first year until she hit 1 year old and hadn't gained much weight. She dropped down to the 15% but she is perfectly normal and has a good appetite, etc.

Great book for this kind of thing is by Ellyn Satter - Child of Mine: Feeding with Love and Good Sense. or check her website I've found it very helpful in feeding my daughter.
peaceful_mama's Avatar peaceful_mama 03:46 AM 07-09-2010
This is actually such a common thing I've heard from moms of toddlers who nurse a lot (not just still nursing at bedtime, but nursing on demand throughout the day)

That I have actually begun to wonder if it isn't NORMAL and the *charts* are based on toddlers who do *not* nurse on demand....probably true.

Out of the kids I know personally who are extended, on-demand bf'ers, I'd say hmmmm.......maybe ONE did not plot in the lower end, or even the *very low* end of a toddler growth chart.

I think it's important to also look at the rest of the child. A child who *can* and *does* eat solid food, even if it is not a large amount, is developing normally, and *looks* healthy other than being small is most likely normal.
(some kids yeah might have feeding issues, but those children tend to have noticeable problems eating solid food beyond eating small amounts of it.)
azzeps's Avatar azzeps 03:54 AM 07-09-2010
Oh, another thing is that I think when they become toddlers, they run around everywhere and burn so much more energy than before that they just slim down quite a lot. I think that's part of what happened to my daughter as soon as she started walking. They're just busy, busy, busy!
swd12422's Avatar swd12422 05:12 AM 07-09-2010
It better be okay, b/c I have one, too! He's barely on the charts. He refused all solids til he was 18 months, and even now it's sometimes a struggle to get him to eat, although now it's b/c he'd rather do other things. Even more maddening, his favorite lunch is grapes, tomatoes, and carrots. No fat at all. I try to get it into him whenever possible, but the only high calorie foods he likes are junk. And like PPs said, since they start walking/running everywhere, they burn it off faster than they take it in. As our ped said, someone's gotta be on the small end of the spectrum, and someone's gotta be on the largest too...

As long as he's healthy and active, I don't worry. Nothing I can do about it, so I try not to bother.
newmothermary's Avatar newmothermary 10:03 AM 07-09-2010
Links fixed.
mamadelbosque's Avatar mamadelbosque 10:20 AM 07-09-2010
Sure hope so. DS1 is 3 and still on the tiny side - ~28/29#s as of a couple months ago, and ~36/37" tall. He started dropping in the charts ~9/10 months, and ds2 seems to be following the same pattern.
crunchy_mommy's Avatar crunchy_mommy 11:25 AM 07-09-2010
He looks great (and BTW, absolutely adorable!) to me... If I passed him on the street I would not think he's too skinny or undernourished (and yes, I HAVE thought that about toddlers I've seen).

If he's not losing weight & he's hitting all his milestones & seems happy, active, etc. then I wouldn't be concerned.

My DS is 17mos. He's thinning out quite a bit but still has some chub. He's tiny (short) though and just looks miniature. He is starting to eat more solids but still relies heavily on nursing, especially during growth spurts (will barely touch his food then!) He probably eats 1/3 cup of food a day on average, but some days he'll eat a ton less or more. He has almost no interest in breakfast, lunch, snacks but will eat a good amount at dinner & after dinner -- I think it's because he spends more time with DH in the evenings. He will eat bananas (any fruit really) like there's no tomorrow, and loves brown rice pasta and a few other things, but most everything else he'll only take a few bites from.

The one thing I am worried about is his 18mo checkup, our doc is pretty laid back & his own kids were BF on demand past a year but he does seem to be obsessed with weighing & charting DS's growth!!
newmothermary's Avatar newmothermary 11:28 AM 07-09-2010
Same here.

Originally Posted by crunchy_mommy View Post
The one thing I am worried about is his 18mo checkup, our doc is pretty laid back & his own kids were BF on demand past a year but he does seem to be obsessed with weighing & charting DS's growth!!
Also, I don't want to curb the snacks that he likes (fish crackers!) but if he doesn't eat much of anything else, it will be the only thing he will consume.
simplemama32's Avatar simplemama32 11:51 AM 07-09-2010
He looks happy and healthy to me. :-) My DS is on the skinny side...barely 25 pounds at 2 years, 3 months old, and I'm pretty sure he's going to take after my tall and lean grandfather. ;-)

Oh, and I second the Ellyn Satter book -- very helpful to me, too.
Twinklefeet's Avatar Twinklefeet 12:02 PM 07-09-2010
he doesn't look skinny to me, he looks about the same weight as my kiddo. We're on the lower end of the chart, but we actually don't pay much attention to charts as both hubby and I are usually at one end or the other of those things, so why should our son be different?
I say keep up the good work. He's a beautiful kid and you're doing a wonderful job being his mom!
crunchy_mommy's Avatar crunchy_mommy 12:05 PM 07-09-2010
Originally Posted by newmothermary View Post
Also, I don't want to curb the snacks that he likes (fish crackers!) but if he doesn't eat much of anything else, it will be the only thing he will consume.
I do limit DS's fruit some because I just don't want him eating fruit all day long & nothing else... Which is really only a problem at parties & outings because at home he doesn't have as much access to the fruit & eats what I'm eating... Maybe you can limit his fish crackers to 'twice a day' or 'when we're at the playground' or whatever you feel is appropriate, and try to get him involved in picking out little meals he will eat? Open the cabinets or the fridge & let him pick out what he wants (without the crackers in view of course)?
YayJennie's Avatar YayJennie 12:06 PM 07-09-2010
He looks just like my 16 month old! I wouldn't worry at all, so long as there's no weight lose and he's hitting developmental milestones alright. My son Wyatt is very lean (23 lbs, but almost 35" at almost 16 months!) But his daddy is 6'1" and 145 lbs. He's bound to be tall and skinny, and he eats well, so I don't worry. He just runs around like crazy all day and has a high metabolism I guess.
butterfly_mommy's Avatar butterfly_mommy 12:47 PM 07-09-2010
He looks awesome and super cute
MamaPhD's Avatar MamaPhD 07:33 PM 07-09-2010
What a cutie pie! My DD is a big girl (90th percentile height & 50 percentile weight) and I feel like she eats SOOOO much some days and I feel like she didin't eat anything other days!. But she has always been 90/50 "super model". So it just means moms worry about everything anyways whether our babies are too small, too big, doesn't eat, eats too much, etc, etc. I think it just is part of being a mom! It's good to have our mom radars on but mostly it's nothing.
nukuspot's Avatar nukuspot 10:19 PM 07-09-2010
I have a skinny LO too and she also is picky about food (luckily she still is BF so I can relax a bit.) One of the things she likes is goat yogurt with fruit or Organic O cereals (like organic sugar free cheerios) so it made me think of your LO's cheerio and yogurt thing...So I wanted to share something I do to get more fat into her. I blend 1/4 an avocado in with the yogurt. It makes it green but otherwise I think it tastes pretty much the same, maybe even better than just plain yogurt! She eats it just fine. I also grind seeds and nuts and sprinkle that on top. Maybe you can try that for variety and extra fat?

PS...I just looked at his photos and he is so cute! He has the exact same body shape as my DD. I think he looks great...
Caterina's Avatar Caterina 03:21 AM 07-10-2010
We also have a skinny minny. She looks about his size but is almost 21 months (and 21lbs.) But she has a wide-ranging palate for food, breast-feeds on demand and has been hitting all her milestones on time. She wasn't super into food until we started adding more fats... for example, now she loves her egg fried in butter, but still doesn't like boiled eggs. She loves little sandwiches with coconut oil, almond butter and apple butter (the Eden organics one is just apples) Does your family eat meat? When we started offering DD meat around 14 months she loved it. We're amazed at how much she likes soup and broths. We make our own super fatty chicken broth, which she loves. She can actually say 'broth' now! She also likes smoothies - with full fat yogurt, fruit and/or veggies, avocado, flax oil. Although she's still pretty tiny, she is super healthy and has started gaining more weight since we figured out some of these things that make food more appealing to her.
holothuroidea 06:03 AM 07-10-2010
My 22mo girl is way skinnier than your LO. We are wondering if she will be 20# by her 2nd birthday. She is happy and healthy and eats as much as any other toddler, which in all honestly is not all that much.

I am firm about her eating what I give her, and I don't pander to toddler pickiness. I've gotten some comments from relatives when I say "this or nothing" and allow her to choose not to eat. That's really been the hardest part, but I'm glad I've stuck to my guns because she really does get a larger variety of food than the cookie-and-cracker eaters in her playgroup.
MittensKittens's Avatar MittensKittens 06:34 AM 07-10-2010
Your son looks about the same size as mine, who is 19 months old. He's very cute, too!
Lillypop's Avatar Lillypop 08:56 AM 07-10-2010
My 26 month old barely weighs 25 pounds (I say he's officially 24, he was only 25 because he'd been with his dad for 2 days and hadn't pooped the whole time because he doesn't get boobymilk there).

He nurses as much as the baby does.

He does eat food, not a lot, hardly any somedays (like 1-3 bites is a decent meal for him).

He only hit 20 pounds when he was 15-16 months old. He was 8 lbs and 21 inches at birth, but he is a little less than 50% for height right now (but his biodad is only 5'7", and I'm barely 5'4") not that we do well-baby visits, so I'm not even sure he's that tall.

Meets all of milestones, pees/poops often (even has potty-learned already), very active, happy, growing, bouncy little boy.

Our other toddler DS is very small, 21 pounds at 31 months, but he has some major developmental delays/emotional issues going on. And he is obviously not perfectly healthy or happy or active at all. We're still working to find out what exactly is wrong.
PatchChild's Avatar PatchChild 10:09 AM 07-10-2010
Skinny is the rule wround here as well. DS is a little over three now and he just hit thirty pounds. He still fits in 18 month pants without a problem, at least for shorts in the summer. I'm going to be getting creative when he needs long pants in the fall.

Some skinny mini kids are just like that. If they have lots of energy and continue to be learning new things, I wouldn't stress too much.