Under Weight

What children eat affects not only how fast they develop and learn, but also their overall well-being. Kids who maintain a healthy weight will not have height and weight problems as they grow up. Being undernourished often as a child can create some health problems in teens and adulthood like bones, muscles, and heart conditions. Support ranges from providing a child optimal nutrition with food and growth specific nutritional supplements (eg. Pediasure) anyway a parent can.15


What is underweight for a child?

The simplest way to visually see (clothes fitting, ribs protrusions) is to compare them with fellow students and friends. The second way is, if you know your child’s exact weight (kilograms) and height (centimeters), divide the weight(kilograms) by the height(centimeters) squared and multiply by 10,000 (Body Mass Index= weight(kilograms) ÷ (height(centimeters) x height(centimeters)) x 10,000) or (Body Mass Index= weight(kilograms) ÷ height (meters) squared).2. Of all the multiple BMI tables and charts available online and at your preferred medical professional, compare and see where it falls. If the number you get is below rating of 18, then they are underweight2. Your preferred medical professional can also do some tests and find out causes and provide treatment.134


Causes of Height and Weight Problems in Children

Being underweight (slowed growth effect) is as concerning as being overweight (early heart problems and diabetes) so consulting a nutritionist will regulate their diet. The general causes, but not limited, that contribute to your child’s weight problems are:

Food allergies or picky eating – this limits the types of nutrient rich foods by textures, smells, and visual appeal factors and enough calories are a challenge. A diet lacking essential nutrients can also alter the way the body burns fat, carbohydrates and calories.1

Digestive issues – if their bowels are easily irritated, nutrient absorption may be insufficient, thus causing weight problems even though they eat everything.1

Parent’s dilemma – letting your child eat whatever so long as they are eating something may fill them up with nutrient poor foods. On the flip side, feeding them high caloric sweets, cakes, and fatty food in an attempt to force weight gain can cause childhood obesity.13

How to healthy support weight gain

A Child Nutritionist can provide an appropriate meal plan to prevent boredom and nutritional deficiencies.

  1. Consult a growth chart1
  2. Encourage physical activity as expending energy increases appetite.34
  3. Feed a child an age-appropriate diet, follow a Healthy Plate model (¼ proteins, ¼ starches and grains, ½ fruits and vegetables).6
  4. Stick to a meal schedule, add a pre bedtime snack (eg. 1 serving of Pediasure = 5 scoops (48.6 g) powder + 190 ml of water = 225 ml glass)45

In principle, a child should have 5 portions of fruits and vegetables everyday and grain and starchy vegetables like potatoes and yams or whole grains as bulk of each meal.3 Work in nut butters or healthy oils as they are healthy fats rich in omega fatty acids and vitamin E that support muscle and bone health for growth.16 Supplements are a possibility, so long as it has the required daily vitamins and minerals to support growth and make up for nutrients missing from food. Recommended by experts nationwide, PediaSure® is a good nutritional support for children. Scientifically formulated with 37 key nutrients that include growth supporting protein, vitamin D, calcium, vitamin E, your child can play growth catch up and live a fully enriched life.

Consult a pediatrician or visit Pediasure Myanmar for more information and request a free sample.56


  1. https://health.clevelandclinic.org/dietitians-best-advice-child-underweight/
  2. https://health.clevelandclinic.org/whats-a-healthy-bmi/
  3. https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/healthy-weight/childrens-weight/underweight-children-6-12-advice-for-parents/
  4. https://thenourishedchild.com/feeding-skinny-kid/
  5. https://abbottfamily.com.sg/products/page/pediasure
  6. https://abbottfamily.com.sg/articles/science/complete-nutrition

Supplemental Reading:

  1. https://pediasuremyanmar.com/choosing-the-right-milk/
  2. https://www.eatright.org/health/wellness/your-overall-health/safe-weight-gain-tips-for-underweight-kids
  3. https://www.morefm.co.nz/home/trending/2020/03/these-are-the-foods-that-fussy-eaters-hate-eating-the-most.html