Anything you can suggest on how to increase children's appetite

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  1. annieloulaurel profile image57
    annieloulaurelposted 13 years ago

    I'm a mother of a 10-year old child who doesn't like to eat at all. I've done everything I can from appetite stimulant, food supplement, to complete milk powder. Still, no effect! Can anyone help, please?

    1. edelhaus profile image72
      edelhausposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Hi Annieloulaurel,  this may seem like an obvious question but have you taken your child to a doctor?  The first thing I would ask is does my child's weight fall within the "normal" parameters for his or her age.  If they do, stop worrying!  Your child will eat when hungry and is getting the necessary calories.  If your child's weight doesn't fall within the normal parameters then your pediatrician will set about finding out why not.

      I think sometimes we can get caught up in feeling like we and our children need to eat 3 squares a day regardless of whether we're hungry or not.  Kids pay a lot more attention to the signals their bodies are sending them and less attention to what they "should" or "should not" do - so again, as long as your child's doctor says everything is alright - relax.  Your child's appetite will kick in when they start to grow again.


    2. bettybarnesb profile image61
      bettybarnesbposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Hi annieloulaurel

      If you have visited doctor and no concern is shown then try not to worry.  Although I know how you feel.  I have 4 children and all of them had different appetites when they were young.  Does your child prefer to drink milk, juices etc more than eat solids, then I would suggest that you insist upon the solid foods before he can have something to drink.  Another thing you may want to consider is normal bowel movements.  It will also cause a child to refuse food.

      Let me know.


    3. Evil Stepmother profile image59
      Evil Stepmotherposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      I know this post is old, but I've just read it and I think I can help.  I didn't see my solutions here already.

      Melpor suggested cutting up raw veggies, because kids really don't seem to like them cooked.  I agree with that but would like to add the following--1.  Cut them up into interesting shapes.  That'll get the kid's attention.  Especially if you can do it in the shape of something they love (a favorite character,  a football, etc).  2.  Put out some dips for the kid to try.  If they like it, they would be more likely to eat it.

      My other suggestion, which seems to be unique here, is to let the kid help make the food.  "Hey, want to help mommy bake cookies?", a sentence most kids would love to hear.  Start with something you know they'll like, and then go onto some more adventurous recipes.  Most people sample while cooking.

  2. profile image0
    Baileybearposted 13 years ago

    there are a number of possible reasons for poor appetite.  Is your child very thin and/or frequently sick/feeling sick or with a sore tummy?  If so, may have a food sensitivity which can make them feel ill and lose appetite.  eg a sensitivity to a group like dairy or gluten is common.

    If they have heightened senses eg very strong sense of smell etc, then sensory issues may be the main factor ie the texture of food.  Often the food is spat out or gagged on & rejected if it is a particular texture.  Also will tend to only eat one or two textures together  eg my son gags on solid butter as a spread, but is fine with melted butter on some things.  We have been seeing an occupational therapist to help desensitise him a little - we a doing a simple body brushing technique (pressure therapy) which seems to help.

    Other reasons include anxiety, OCD tendencies.  We were recommended having our son serve his own portions. He had to put any food he didn't want on his plate, or on a plate next to it.  We were not to comment on his eating, positive or negative.  He ate larger amounts and gained a few kilos.

  3. crazymom3 profile image68
    crazymom3posted 13 years ago

    I would say get her a well-check, make sure her blood tests are in the healthy levels and her weight.  If everything is ok don't worry so much about how much she is eating, rather then what she is eating. Is it healthy? is she taking a children's vitamin to supplement what she may lack in her diet. I have a child that practically only wants salad and or chocolate. She's only five, but she is healthy in every way. every child is different and like us grown-ups when we have a craving sometimes children do and sometimes they don't crave what we make because we are craving it so offer peanut buyter and jelly or tuna sandwitches(other alternatives they may want.

  4. couturepopcafe profile image60
    couturepopcafeposted 13 years ago

    Check for one or all of the following deficiencies:  B12, calcium, magnesium, vitamin D, complete protein.

  5. Jaggedfrost profile image59
    Jaggedfrostposted 13 years ago

    become a short order house?  it doesn't do anything for your sanity but sometimes get results.  the long term side effects aren't fabulous... but....

  6. melpor profile image88
    melporposted 13 years ago

    One of the best way to get children to eat healthy, especially more vegetables. Let your children eat their vegetables uncooked. Slice up your carrots, celeries, and other vegetables and serve it to them as snacks. For some unknown reason children do not like the taste of cooked vegetables.

  7. kmackey32 profile image62
    kmackey32posted 13 years ago

    Make something and then tell them they cant eat it. Works everytime... lol Too bad your child doesnt have a brother or sister then you could say it was theres and for some reason they just want to eat it...

    1. profile image51
      patclemsposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      I have a 3 yr old son with the problem of not eating anything at all, the only thing he eats is yoghurt and porridge in the morning, afternoon and evening, often he eats only twice a day. he does not eat any sort of solid food, fruit nor  vegetable nor snacks. he drinks water and some juice at times.  Ive tried to make him eat different food but to no avail. i give him multivitamin and it doesnt seem to work for him, he has no medical condition and right now im concerened he is seriously underweight.

      1. MelissaBarrett profile image58
        MelissaBarrettposted 13 years agoin reply to this

        That description sounds like it is possibly related to oral defensiveness.  The textures of the food your child eats are similar.  Maybe a quick evaluation by a speech therapist or an Occupational therapist might help.

  8. Lisa HW profile image61
    Lisa HWposted 13 years ago

    All three of my kids were small-framed, slight, kids (and healthy and active ones, thankfully), who didn't eat a whole lot on a regular basis.  They'd occasionally seem to have a good meal, but more often they didn't.  Since they were slender I didn't have to worry about the calories in fruit juices or milk, so I made sure I bought the highest quality/most nutritious of both and had plenty of both for them.  Vegetable juice was something else I made we always had in.

    Other than that, I made sure any/every snack they did want was high in nutrition but also something that appealed to them.  That way, at least I knew their snacks were good nutritional supplements for whatever they may not have eaten at meal times.

    I left the meal portions up to them.  If someone wanted a bowl of high-quality/low-sugar cereal (or a bag of dry cereal) later, they could have it.

    As someone who has never really outgrown the "kid-thing" of not liking a big, plate-load, of food (and, in fact, losing my appetite if food shows up in overwhelming amounts), I was always careful not to overload their plates.  (To this day, when I'm eating at home, I prefer a sandwich-size plate to a dinner plate.  My immediate reaction to the over-sized loads of (even food I love) served at restaurants is to kind of lose appetite and interest in it "now that I'm looking at it all").

    Anyway, one thing to try might be smaller portions on smaller plates.

    Most kids and some adults just don't have a lot of interest in spending a lot of time on eating.  Some kids and too many adults have a little more interest in food and eating than is good.

    My two sons got more of an appetite/interest in food when they got to be about twelve.  My daughter, like her mother, grew up to limit her "big-meal" eating to something she only rare does.

  9. CyclingFitness profile image88
    CyclingFitnessposted 13 years ago

    Have you tried getting them to do plenty of exercise?

  10. Monisajda profile image62
    Monisajdaposted 13 years ago

    I would also suggest to look into amount of physical activity your child has during a day.

    Also, some kids don't eat to manifest their protest against you, a parent or your parenting techniques. It may be a form of self inflicted strike to show you that he/she is in charge. But these are just guesses since we don't know anything about your situation.

    When I was a kid I was overeating only because my mom was trying to limit my food intake (she was afraid I would get too fat), so this was my natural rebellion. Maybe your child is sensing that you are too concerned about food and he/she is acting on that...

  11. MyFavoriteBedding profile image39
    MyFavoriteBeddingposted 13 years ago

    Sometimes just making food look "fun" may entice them to eat.  For example, of you want them to each fruit, cut it into shapes to create a figure.  Also, instead of making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, maybe do peanut butter with the nutela, just to make it "fun".

    1. Evil Stepmother profile image59
      Evil Stepmotherposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Oops, the shape thing already was here.  Sorry for the repeat.

  12. dcristo profile image60
    dcristoposted 8 years ago

    Have you tried the periactin appetite stimulant? It is said to be very effective for weight gain in children and adults. You can find more information about this medication here: … ight-gain/


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