I have an 8 yr old boy who is always wanting to snack. He loves fruit and will eat veggies/protein, so he does eat healthy most of the time. He craves the carbs though, and if I'm not watching, he will overload on the crackers or tortilla chips and not be hungry for regular meals or healthy snacks. He is slim, only 56 lbs and is an active kid who loves hockey. I am trying to be watchful to make sure he has a good nutritional foundation as I am reading more and more how these early years sets up kids metabolism and eating habits for the rest of their lives. Not an easy task in todays busy life with the advertising bombardment of unhealthy choices that look and taste so good to kids (not to mention adults)! I am hoping that by promoting lots of activity and offering the healthy snacks most of the time, it will keep things balanced.
My daughter is four and she is always hungry. She is as tall as my seven year old and weighs more. I am a little concerned about her weight but she is really active. I think it's kind of because she is spoiled.
Unless your child is a little butter ball and getting really huge, see a doctor and implement some positive control, if not don't worry about it.....check the food guide to see how many calories your child should be eating and as long as you are giving healthy snacks it shouldn't be a problem....Kids usually eat more when their growing and they grow in spurts..... If your child is a dynamo, never sitting still, which is what my son was like, then more calories would be burned, thus the need for more fuel........ Spreading your calorie consumption throughout the day by eating more often is called grazing and it keeps the blood sugar levels stabilized.
"Growing up we had cows and that is how they eat and I have never seen a fat cow"....maybe there is something to it !!!!!
Fitness Minutes: (20,336) Posts: 9,318 2/26/08 11:45 A
My three year old son goes through stages where he's eating all the time, usually it's followed by a big growth spurt. If her weight is fine, I wouldn't worry too much about it (I know it's hard staying focused on your own diet and nutrition when you're constantly feeding your kiddos LOLOL I say this as my son asks for M&M's geesh) Toddlers usually burn off what they eat fairly easily as they are always on the go.
"Work the plan & plan to work"! "You've got what it takes to do this, so show me what you've got"! "excUses don't exist without U in the middle"! "Your weight isn't the only thing that needs to change to complete this journey"! "If you cheat when you eat, don't wail on the scale"
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Fitness Minutes: (828) Posts: 479 2/25/08 10:33 P
When my daughter was 2, I had a daycare provider accuse me of not feeding her because she was constantly in the kitchen at daycare. Minutes after I dropped her off in the morning she'd be in the kitchen begging for food, and she'd be there the rest of the day. They thought I didn't feed her breakfast, so I started taking breakfast there and letting them feed it to her. They noticed that she would still go to the kitchen and beg for food after eating it! Eventually they just started giving her healthy snacks to eat throughout the day. It was all anyone could do for her. She was, and still is ALWAYS hungry. She eats yogurt, salad, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, oatmeal, bananas, oranges, blueberries, applesauce, anything that will fill her up for the moment. It drives me nuts when she's snacking 20 minutes before dinner. But she still eats her dinner. She's not overweight at all. Her dad keeps telling her she needs to gain weight, that she's too skinny (I have told him to stop this, because she doesn't need anyone to tell her that there's anything wrong with her body, whether it's too big or too small). Her doctor says she's perfect, she falls into the middle of the healthy bmi range for her age and height range.
As long as the doc isn't concerned, kids should be allowed to eat as much as they want as long as it's healthy and they aren't becoming overweight in my opinion.
PERSEVERANCE: There is no substitute for hard work. - Thomas Alva Edison
current weight: 211.0
Fitness Minutes: (8,488) Posts: 1,838 2/25/08 8:41 P
I have a 3 yr old the same way. I let him eat when he wants to. I don't want food to control his life either by eating too much or eating too little. Kids don't knwo to overeat so if you give the kids healthy snacks in child size portions then it is good-in my opinion.
I have noticed that my two 2 year old grandchildren eat and eat. It may just be the age. I think if they are hungry and are willing to eat fruit, vegies, whole grains, water -- don't worry. If they asking for more crackers, goldfish crackers, or any other kind of "processed kid snack", I would curtail the snacking.
"To give them beauty for ashes, The oil of joy for mourning, The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; That they may be called trees of righteousness, The planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified.” Isaiah 61:3
Don't Stress over it - the more you stress, then food can become a "power struggle/control issue".
I have 2 boys (16 & 13), they both go through mass eating phases and then literally barely nothing. And usually not at the same time. My youngest is a grazer - if he's not hungry at meal times, I pack it up and he eats it later (I usually always have a doggie bag from a restaurant, that he eats an hour after we get home.) It seems they are bottomless pits when they are growing. I keep apples, oranges, celery, carrots and cereal on hand for them to snack on. Both of them are slim (112 & 90 lbs) and I haven't had to worry about them over-eating, even when they are in "feasting" mode.
Make sure you talk to her dr when you take her in for check ups to make sure all is okay!
DebO - So CA
Team leader for "Lutherans getting Healthy!" Team is focused on motivation, wellness, and support! http://teams.sparkpeople.com/lutherans getting healthy
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Pounds lost: 22.2
Fitness Minutes: (208,459) Posts: 7,359 2/25/08 4:46 P
Oh, I know the feeling, except that I have a boy who's 11 and growing! I think it is very important to feed your daughter when hungry, but there is nothing wrong with setting bounderies, not just over the food choices, but also the times she eats. Just like she was on a set schedule as a baby ( or could have been?) you might want to set a eating schedule like you have or her own: One suggestion: breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, dinner, snack (6 X per day)or no snack after dinner- whatever works. My son eats something like this: breakfast ( cereal with milk, light sausages or a hashbrown ( natural) or a frozen waffle) a snack at school ( granola bar, string cheese- something portable), packed lunch ( sandwich, veggie/fruit, treat), afternoon snack/early dinner ( balanced meal with vegetables) and sometimes dessert and after activity recovery meal ( he plays sports 4 nights a week). If he is hungry afterwards, he can have fruit- as much as he wants. He loves apples and usually has one every night. It has been working for years and is not perfect of course. Fridays his granpa will take him for a Happy Meal on occassion or he'll have pizza over there on a Friday- school treats for birthday parties ( cupcakes, halloween candy etc), but he definiely has never had a weight problem. I wished I could be as disciplined as he is! I hope that helps. Key is: Don't stress too much. If you think your daughter wants too much food ( she can never get enough or is a bottomless pit, try to increase her protein intake).
I find that our kids (now 8 & 4) go thru phases where they do nothing but snack. It's hell on the family mealtimes but if they're eating healthy, I look at it as growing issues. I find that the even blood sugar levels and resulting good behavior far outweighs my need to force them to adhere to an adult schedule. Keep offering water and healthy snacks (she'd probably LOVE to get her own - set out a tray within reach, and teach her how to take a portion onto an unbreakable plate or bowl. Figure out a way to regulate the intake if you must (set a timer, or some such). You'll be developing her motor skills, teaching her responsibility, and feeding her body as well as her sense of self-reliance.
I used to give my daughter small bottles of water every time she asked for food ! Not baby bottles, but the cute little ones ! I gave her celery, carrots, radishes, bell peppers, cucumbers,and pea pods. The pediatrician was impressed that she ate those things ! She was on predisone allot due to her asthma and she was always starving ! Hope this helps. You might ask your pediatrician too.
icesk8rsmom aka: Deb
Smile all of the time. It keeps people wondering what your up to !
current weight: 221.6
Fitness Minutes: (828) Posts: 479 2/25/08 4:36 P
This just started about 1 month ago. My daughter who is 2yr. old won't stop asking for food. She has her breakfast which is usually a small bowl of cereal or a slice of whole wheat bread with peanut butter and juice or a waffle. She ill fine for about 1/2 a hr. then she starts asking for more food. I give her either yogurt or an apple cut into slices and a short while after she'll start asking for more. I don't know if its hunger or if she is getting use to eating all the time. She is not overweight, her weight is just where it has to be. Please help if you have a solution or some ideas on what i can do. I'm trying to lose weight and her taking me in to the kitchen doesn't help me.
Heighest weight: 201 Goal weight: 130
Don't eat when you're not hungry! Don't eat because someone else is eating! Don't eat because it is there! Don't eat because you paid for it! Don't eat because it is free!
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