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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My 2 year old has started eating enormous quantities of food. Like adult size poritons at every meal. This happened somewhat suddenly. she has always been a pretty good eater but int he last week it exploded. This has resulted in a BM 4-5 times a day and they are HUGE. No big deal except that her stomach seems to be bothering her all night long and she is having trouble sleeping and napping. I can hear it rumbling and her farting.<br><br>
Gross, I know. Sorry.<br><br>
So to comcplicate matters, we are losing our health insurance on Monday and my dh is currently unemployed. I am a sahm. No money. If this needs medical attention, we need to do something by Monday. SHould I be concerned?
 

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i envy you. yesterday my 31 month old had 1/2 cup of mac&cheese. that's it. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/irked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="irked">:
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I freak out a lot less during the not-eating times because she still breastfeeds and I know she is getting what she needs. This is just so strange. She seriously ate two enchiladas for dinner last night (I could only eat 1.5 because they are big) and then went on to ask for an apple AND and piece of ww bread which she also finished. Then she started begging dh for bites of his salad and ate half of it! This child would not even touch lettuce or apples last week.<br><br>
I have noticed that I am hungry all day. it is just now getting really cold and I normally gain 5 pounds at the beginning of winter. This must be how. But I am not eating 3-4 times more than normal.<br><br>
What gives? Please tell me this is normal.
 

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My dd is four and she has always done exactly what you are describing. She either eats like a bird or a horse. There are days when she just seems to live on air and days when she eats more than the adults in the house. Some days I feel like all I am doing is getting her food. I just assume that it is a growth spurt and she knows what she needs. She is tall and super skinny.<br><br>
As far as a hurt belly, make sure that she is eating smaller more frequent portions so she can have the food without overfilling her belly. My dd's belly seems to hurt if she eats a lot of dairy-but I think that your family is vegan so I guess that isn't the case. Maybe make sure that she is eating a wide variety and not too much of any one thing. I definately would run to the doctor for this. Maybe something to settle her gurgling tummy like peppermint tea at night.<br><br>
Also, my kids always seem to sleep poorly during a growth spurt or any other developmental gain.<br><br>
Hope this helps a bit.
 

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Is she vegan? Is she getting enough fat? Animal cholesterol is vital for brain development for children.<br><br>
Gas and pooping several times a day indicates that she is not digesting her food. Have you tried probiotics?<br><br>
Do you think it's possible this might have originated in her tummy feeling bad first? and then she is eating more to make it feel better for the short term?<br><br>
How was her digestion/poops before this?
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>JaneS</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Is she vegan? Is she getting enough fat? Animal cholesterol is vital for brain development for children.<br></div>
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I think the OP said that the child is still breastfeeding. So yeah, there is cholesterol in the child's diet.<br><br>
Honestly, it sounds to me like a growth spurt, and discomfort from eating too much at once. I agree about peppermint, and about encouraging smaller, more frequent meals, and I also think that encouraging your DD to do her big eating earlier in the day might help, too.<br><br>
I also think, though, that a quick call to the doctor might put your mind at ease, while you still have the insurance. I doubt anything's wrong, but I also know how worry can wear at you.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>llyra</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I think the OP said that the child is still breastfeeding. So yeah, there is cholesterol in the child's diet.</div>
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Whoops sorry OP! I'm still sensitive from my Ped telling me that since DS is 2 he "needs" to be a lowfat diet. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/irked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="irked">:
 

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My son is 33 mos. and has eaten more than me since before he was a year old. He amazes people when we eat out- he'll eat as much as a grown man and ask for more food. He only poops once a day though- it's the pooping so much and tummy hurting I'd worry about. He does fart quite a bit, but it doesn't hurt. He is breastfed and still nurses hourly or more, and is otherwise vegan except for the occasional egg or egg-containing baked good. I feed him as much as he wants, and just make sure it's healthy- he'll eat two bowls full of organic peas and think that's a great snack. He's in the 90th percentile for weight but doesn't look at all fat, besides a little baby potbelly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
A lot of the poop is non-digested food. It seems to cycle through very fast. I guess i would not say "a lot" of it is undigested. It is mostly normal poo with some bits of recognizable foods. She grazes all day which is why she never ate much at meals. But she is still grazing then eating huge meals. I will try the peppermint....she loves tea. And I will try to keep the HUGE meals earlier in the day. It is just so wierd. She was (until a week ago) a once-a-day pooper that you could set your clock to. She still does the clockwork poo but another 3 times each day!<br><br>
Another thing I did not think to mention is that I went out of town last weekend. I was gone for three nights and she did not get any breastmilk during that time. I left pumped milk, but she has turned her nose up at that for quite some time now and did not drink any. So it made sense that she ate so much when I was gone. I just expected it to calm down after a day or so.<br><br>
She has always been a farter and I am not sure it is more now or if I am just more sensitive to it. Sh eotherwise seems to act normal.
 

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My DD does this sometimes too, though not the poopy part.<br><br>
Does she get much food that is high in calories but low in density? I'm thinking this is a bit trickier with a vegan diet (we're vegetarian and have gone near-vegan at times). Maybe she is eating a lot of roughage and fiber (beans and lettuce) to "fill up" her tummy (and that could cause the gas and lots o' poop) when what she actually needs is more calories and fat, as a result of a growth spurt. Avocados? Nuts/seeds? Perhaps some olive oil or flaxseed oil mixed into her food? Maybe nursing more would help?
 

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our almost 17 month old has been known to eat as much as any adult at the table, especially breakfast, where he will eat a whole bowl of oatmeal, about a 1/4 cup of yogurt, some fruit, and a handful of cereal (the starter while I get everything else ready). he has definitely gone through some phases where he will eat more for a few days and poop a lot, and then eat not very much and still poop regularly. he also cycles through food quite quickly, and some of his food is only partially digested at the back end.<br><br>
my first thought was growth spurt, though.<br><br>
sending you peaceful vibes...<br><br>
warmly,<br>
claudia
 

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It sounds like a growth spurt to me. I cannot imagine my son eating that much! He still nurses about 8 times a day or more though.<br><br>
I wanted to mention though that it is normal for some vegan children to eat a lot! My niece has always been able to out-eat me and she's been vegan since conception. She can eat and eat and eat and still have room for more. She is as skinny as a rail too.
 

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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">Animal cholesterol is vital for brain development for children.</td>
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Don't forget that humans manufacture most of their own cholesterol. That's why people with cholesterol problems don't make that much of a dent in their high cholesterol levels simply by eliminating dietary cholesterol.<br>
I don't have any advice. My 30 month old vegan has always eaten like a bird. What kinds of things does yours eat during the day?<br>
Janine
 

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Be prepared... Bigger shoes are in her future! Whenever one of my kids starts eating like crazy they outgrow things!
 

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Simon's vegan too (as are me and dh). He's 19 months and far from a big eater. Do you have Becoming Vegan by Davis and Vesanto (I think I have the authors right)? It has some helpful suggestions. In your situation I would add a lot of higher fat foods or dips/dressings and reduce fiber. Maybe even sometimes use white bread products instead of whole wheat (in cases in which the main nutrition was the topping) and replace some fruit with juice (taking extra care of teeth). Maybe she's eating a lot for pleasure, but it may also be that she's having a hard time meeting her needs, so she needs to eat all day to feel comfortable.<br><br>
Whoever said that toddlers (or anyone else) needs animal choleresterol to be healthy -- evidence, please? As the mom of a vegan toddler I've done a lot of research on this and have found nothing at all that even mentions that claim, let alone supports it. On the contrary, even mainstream dietary guidelines indicate that well-planned vegan diets can not only meet everyone's needs, but be very healthy too.<br><br>
I'd also like some meal/snack suggestions.<br><br>
Simon has a lot of soy shakes. It's one thing that he seldom turns down. It's soy beverage, flaxseed oil, frozen bananas, and frozen berries. Sometimes we add tofu but I try not to overdo it with the soy products so usually we don't. I learned recently that zucchini is a lot like tofu. When raw, it doesn't have much flavour at all. I added zucchini to two shakes since (once a frozen zucchini, the other raw) and both shakes were yummy. I also added corn, but that gave it a rather fibrous texture. It still tasted really good though. Maybe a food processor could have gotten rid of the texture (I used a blender).<br><br>
There are no peanut allergies in our families. Simon likes plain 'ole peanut butter and jam sandwiches.<br><br>
He likes the proceessed soy foods, a bit too much for my liking. These are handy convenience items, but I'd rather they be a minor part in his diet. He likes veggies slices and cut up veggie dog bits, especially dipped in mustard and ketchup.<br><br>
He likes spaghetti. We blend a lot of veggies into the sauce for him and add lentils to it afterwards (so that it has some texture).<br><br>
He likes broccoli florets that have some low-sodium (well, reduced sodium) soy sauce. He's always been a flavour fiend. There is very little that he has accepted without flavouring added to it. Wish this weren't the case. I've been worried about his low intake, so I go with what he'll take.<br><br>
Loves olives, strawberries (as long as they aren't even slightly sour), grape bits.<br><br>
Those are a few of his favourites.<br><br>
Oh... and (where's the bag) he loves shake 'n baked tofu cubes and canned veggies (that have been drained and blotted with paper before the masterful shake 'n process). He helps me shake them up. This is another thing he seldom turns down, and it works pretty good as leftovers too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Hmmmmm....lot to think about. She does not like avodaco (wierdo!) but she does like nut butters. She usually eats 2-3 spoonfuls a day straight up as a snack. But this week, we have been out of it and we are really tight on money so I did not buy any more<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> I will be putting that on the grocery list. She does not eat any soy products. I just do not buy them and all that she has had is the odd veggie burger when at someone elses house. I could add that for some high density foods to get her past this.<br><br>
I think she is eating to make her tummy feel better. She awoke last night with HUGE farts and crying. All she wnated to do was have some breastmilk even though she has been self-night weaned for many months. I gave it to her, of course, but it made me think that whoever said that was probably right. I also do think she on to a growth spurt (which is sad because I just found her some nice shoes for once....).<br><br>
We have been eating HUGE quanities of beans lately. With money being tight I have been focussing on the cheaper ingredients. Lots of whole grains, beans, and ww pasta and bread. She has always had at least one bean dish a day because she really likes them but I think binging on them is making her hurt more.<br><br>
I am brewing tea now and hoping some of these ideas will work.<br><br>
BTW, yes animals manufacture thier own cholestrol and make enough for brain developement even without "extended" breastfeeding (if you can call a 2yo breeastfeeding extended). But I do not know any other evgan babies so I really have no set point on what normal amounts of food are. I am a HUGE eater and scrae dh with the quantites I put back but the food is vegan, I am still bfing, and I exercise daily so I expect to eat a lot. Maybe she takes after me<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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I recently posted a question like this, as I was worried about the same thing, except DD seems to just be eating all day long, not just big meals. I limit the amount of food she can eat in one sitting because in the past she has had digestion problems from eating too much, much like you discribed above with the gas, etc.. I give her one portion at a time, and try to engage her in other activities in between. Once about 5 months ago, we were having broccoli, which she loved, and she kept asking for more and more, and I figured it was okay since it was "broccoli"... well she barfed it all up, and now won't eat broccoli (unless it is disguised) because she says it is "scary"!!!<br>
So now, basically I'm just feeding her small portions all day long, and have no life.<br>
Just kidding! Well, sort of....<br>
Anyways, she seems to need the calories, and I have just had to learn to spread them out.<br>
Good luck!<br>
Oh, you could mix in some finely grated carrot with her food, it is supposed to aid digestion. Or buy enzymes, but they are expensive. We also have some powdered acidophilus we sprinkle on breakfast which has helped a lot.
 

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My little guy's been doing this too, he's starting to worry me with the way his older brother eats too (not healthwise, but how can I afford TWO boys eating like this! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> ) I would chalk it up to a growth spurt too.<br><br>
If she seems to have problems at night, maybe limit what she's eating in the evenings before bedtime so it has time to digest before she lays down.
 

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I got the book title I recommended to you slightly wrong. The correct title is Becoming Vegan. It's by Brenda Davis and Vesanto Melina. It has a chapter on feeding vegan children.<br><br>
Since you're trying to save money, an easy fix would be to see if you can get her to nurse more. Breastmilk is pretty fatty and goes in so easily it might help keep her tummy more full while you figure out some more energy-dense foods to give her.<br><br>
If she needs to eat all day long and has gas problems and the like, she may not be getting enough calories. Davis and Melina indicate that this is a potential pitfall of a vegan diet for children and something that should be watched out for. For high fat foods, they recomend: "tofu, smooth nut butters and creams, mashed avocado [have you tried it this way?], soy yogurt, puddings, and soups made with fortified soymilk or formula [you could try ebm if you have some you aren't likely to use otherwise], and moderate amounts of olive, canola, and flax oil."<br><br>
Since she's an abundant eater, perhaps she is more than meeting her needs for vitamins and minerals and can afford to have a filling snack? Some of the frozen soy ice cream substitutes are pretty fatty. They may have some healthy properties too, though I'm sure they are loaded with sugar.<br><br>
It also warns against excesive fiber and goes so far as to say that "concentrated fiber products such as raw wheat bran, bran cereals, and bran muffins should not be used for vegan infants. Do use mainly whole grains, as they contribute important minerals to the diet. Lesser amounts of refined breads and cereal, such as enriched pasta, can help limit total fiber." While that's directed at infants, it seems to apply to toddlers as well, though of course using the foods that are "forbidden" to infants won't cause harm if used infrequently and in small amounts.<br><br>
For other "energy-packed" snacks, they suggest "mashed bananas with soy yogurt, bread or cracker with tofu spread, and homemade muffins." Hummus made with lots of oil (including flaxseed) would also work and is fairly inexpensive to make a huge batch of it. You could try to add an avocado too. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> The book also has a recipe for "Sneaky Dad's Pudding" which is a concoction meant to get as much nutrition into a child as quickly and happily as possible.<br><br>
Her stomach is only about the size of her fist, and it sounds like she's having to keep it full much of the time and might be pretty uncomfortable. I hope she gets some relief really soon. It sounds like it will be an easy situation to fix.<br><br>
I tried making carrot muffins the other day. They sucked, but I'm sure that that is because I didn't follow the recipe very well at all since I had to improvise and don't know what I'm doing. The recipe I was trying to follow had carrots and lots of nuts in it. It is really dense. I put everything in a food processor to avoid the choking hazard of the nuts. Simon liked my creation even though it didn't fully bake. Maybe you'd have better luck with something similar?<br><br>
Best wishes.
 
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