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Ways To Encourage Eating More
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My 13 year old son was diagnosed in Sept. 2011 with Celiac. He immediately gained 6 lbs after going Gluten Free but since the beginning of Jan. he has gained no weight and only a few inches in height. He's a picky eater, liking mostly fruits and vegetables (and popcorn). A typical day is 2 waffles for breakfast, part of an apple in the car to school, tea with half and half. For lunch he'll have a pear, gluten free cereal bar from Glutino, fruit snacks and maybe another snack type food. He'll have popcorn when he gets home from school and then dinner which he eats fairly well. I encourage him to snack, have ice cream, shakes or smoothies but he doesn't seem to want more. The doctor did put him on an appetite stimulant but I saw no increase in his appetite on it. Last night I encouraged him to eat ice cream and his question was "is there another way I can gain weight other than eating?" I'm at a loss. He's 70lbs and looks so tiny next to he is peers.

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Ads by Google:

"is there another way I can gain weight other than eating?"

Weight gain by snacking would be weight gain by increasing fat percentage. Nothing healthy about that.

Real weight gain means more muscles, which of course comes from exercising in combination with eating more proteins...

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I have a 14 year old who does not have these issues but has eating habits that are similar and that is a challenge for this mom. He has gotten that attitude that I am a restuarant that will cater to his whims and has gotten fussy. He hardly wants to eat B and L and just wants junk.

But I feel for your son, maybe he is feeling like I am right now, I feel like "do I have to eat?" LOL. But no joke. I just have too many issues with food and it's just not enjoyable anymore. Plus we often don't feel like eating because food makes us feel unwell. I have the challenge of being underweight too. I was able to gain but it took a lot of consistancy over a long time and I had to put some of my feelings about food aside. Sorry, but it's true. I still do.

That being said, it really helps to keep trying new things, not too much at once, but keep trying. I dug out a new recipe that DH and I will try this weekend because I am in a big food rut right now. Also we have to think that the success is in trying, not whether or not we like the results. We need a few hits sometimes but we can't get stuck in the misses. You also need to try new things that he can eat as a family. It makes a big differnce to have it on the family table, no matter what our age.

Ideally you don't want him to be just eating carbs. That will contribute to feeling unwell. No fear of fats-full fat dairy is a good thing. And protein, ideally from meat or eggs at each meal. But you may just have to start with anything if he's in a real rut-even just a differnt veg or fruit. Maybe rotate his favorites so that he doesn't get too used to one thing and it becomes a crutch. Sometimes our tummies and minds need to be retrained to get used to variety.

Get into the kitchen and make things together. Enlist him with helping in family meal prep. I've been teaching my son kitchen skills for a few years now. My goal is that he can cook for himself by the time he graduates high-school. It's just a basic life skill and esp. important with food allergies on board. He doesn't need to stay for the whole meal prep, if that feels like too much. I often have my son do one task and then he is free to go ;) like cutting lettuce for tacos, peeling apples and cutting them for apple crisp, flipping pancakes after I've made the batter, browning ground beef for tacos etc. It's good for him and helps me;)

Just some ideas. Each family and kid and situation is different but hopefully some of that will help.

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I know the feeling of not wanting to eat. Sometimes I wish I could just take a pill and get it over with!

As a teen, I had a very rough time when I had some sort of stomach thing happen to me. I got very ill and couldn't keep any food down. When I finally got better I was still so fearful of food and even drinks with calories in them that I wouldn't eat a thing and would only drink water or diet soda. I reached a dangerously low weight. For me the appetite stimulant did work.

The only thing I can suggest is to keep food available at all times and encourage him to eat it. Sounds like he needs to be eating more protein. Adding fat to the diet isn't necessarily a bad thing but it needs to be good fats like olive oil, avocado or avocado oil, coconut oil, etc.

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