Why you should pay attention to your child’s appetite?

From taste preference to fear of trying new foods, a child’s picky eating behavior varies. Some parents just let their child eat whatever they want, so long as they are eating something. But parents should pay attention to their child’s diet because it can affect how well they grow up. From finding out why they may be undernourished to providing a variety of foods and food alternatives, here is a more in depth look at why paying attention is important.1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

How their bone health are affected

Childhood bone health is important because that is when they will reach peak bone mass until the age of 18. If bones are undernourished, they can become brittle, potentially develop osteoporosis, and stunt growth. Bones are always breaking down and renewing and if they are not sufficiently supported, they will eat away at their reserves, thus causing weakening bones.1, 4

Why they can become more prone to illnesses

Micronutrients support the production of antibodies and the development of the immune system. Lack of proper nutrition in children leads to weight loss, lowered immunity, and inefficient response to invasions by pathogens. Also a child who is often ill has malabsorption of nutrients, thus triggering a difficult to deal with health cycle.1, 3, 5

Tips to combat

Potential bone growth and immunity effects are preventable by paying close attention to your child’s appetite, providing high quality nutrition, fortification, and nutritional supplements if need be.

  1. Check your child’s snacking habits – are they eating too much between meals? What you feed your child is as important as how much they will eat. If your child will not eat full meals, divide the food of the day into 5 to 6 small meals according to their weight, gender, and height.2, 3
  2. Avoid distractions – it is common to eat in front of the TV, one factor being it is the only time a family can be together. It is a positive in part, but the TV or any forms of media like phones or toys can distract a child away from focusing on the meal. Have a cut off time of these things before meals and put away toys out of sight from the dining table.2, 3
  3. Provide a variety of foods and food alternatives – force feeding or compensating too much with foods they love can create negative feelings of food. Mixing it up with foods they like and do not like, be sure to include sufficient servings of each of the 5 food groups (vegetables, fruits, whole grains, dairy, and protein) throughout the day. Balanced nutrition is key, but the important ones for bones and immunity are Vitamin C and Calcium. If you are worried that your child will not eat enough mushrooms, spinach, eggs, or nuts, child nutritional supplements like Pediasure can help. Enriched with 37 nutrients, just 5 scoops of versatile Pediasure powder can provide the same amount of calcium from 1 big cup of milk and 3 giant strawberries worth of Vitamin C. Together with fresh food, Pediasure can fill in gaps to support bone health and immunity in the pickiest of eaters.2, 4, 5, 6

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  1. https://pediasurearabia.com/ae/en/what-is-pediaSure/right-appettite
  2. https://www.aboutkidshealth.ca/Article?contentid=637&language=English
  3. https://www.rileychildrens.org/connections/your-childs-appetite-has-changed-when-to-worry
  4. https://www.bones.nih.gov/health-info/bone/bone-health/juvenile#2
  5. https://academic.oup.com/cid/article/46/10/1582/294025
  6. https://pediasure.in/about-pediasure/pediasure-product-formulation