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Wednesday, December 16, 2015

My Little Cricket’s Delay: The Nutritionist

One of the several things that the Developmental Pediatrician suggested was to go and see a nutritionist specializing in children. Because my Little Cricket is at a low weight (5%) to his height (75%) and because he is a picky eater she wanted to be sure we were on top of meeting his nutritional goals.

I have been working really hard with the limited things my son will eat to massage as much nutritional value as possible into his diet. But he is a picky eater, he doesn’t eat enough in my opinion and he refuses to try anything new. It is the most frustrating thing ever to try and get him to go outside of his comfort zone. I spend time researching and making new things only for him not to even put it in his mouth. I was doubtful a nutritionist would help me. After all I have been doing research and trying to get as much into his diet as I could. What I really felt like he needed was a food expert to help me convince my child to eat a larger variety of food.

Despite my misgivings I made an appointment with the nutritionist that my doctor recommended. I have to follow the advice of those that are trained in these areas, and not let the little voice in my head tell me that I know better. To be honest I don’t. These people are professionals, they are the ones that I am paying to give me advice, and to not follow up on that advice seems to be shooting myself and my son in our foot.

So I called the nutritionist last week. I made an appointment and I was told that for the week until I see her to make a log of every single thing that my son ate. That in itself was difficult; by writing it all down it only increased my insecurities. Because in my mind his limited list of foods and his limited intake of those foods was a problem. I walked into her office today convinced that although I was doing my best my son wasn’t getting the nutrition he needed. I was afraid of being judged for having a picky eater. I was afraid of a raised eyebrow that this was all my son ate. And I was afraid that she wasn’t going to be able to help me much at all.

Thankfully the reality was vastly different than my perceptions. She started by getting a history of my son. Making a list of the foods and types of things he will and will not eat. And then she dove into entering the food my son ate for the week into the computer. The goal calories for a child my son’s age is 1800-2000 calories and I was shocked that my son was eating 2428 calories on average a day. I was like WHAT!?!?!? Seriously I really thought that at most he was at least going to be on the low end of what was acceptable. Instead he is over the high end. I was ecstatic and thought I couldn’t get happier. And then she showed me the nutrient goals. You want a child to be over 150% she said and my son was well over that on almost every single category; with 246% on his calories. She explained that although my son wasn’t eating a wide variety of food, that I was doing an excellent job keeping what he was eating balanced, and that the food he was eating was meeting all his needs.

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Walking into that office I wasn’t expecting much. I ended up leaving at the very least with the knowledge that my son is eating enough. I know I have been stressing about his food and the food balance he eats, it’s so validating to know that I am doing a good job. On the way home I swung by Whole Foods to pick up the things that the nutritionist suggested I start giving to my Little Cricket. I got Whey Grass-Fed Protein Powder and Omega Fish Oil Supplement. She also suggested replacing the occasional pedisure I gave my Little Cricket with Organic Valley Protein Shake. Since he refuses to eat meat I should give him a bottle or so a day, cut in with his milk at meals, until meat is in his diet.

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With the nutritionist behind us I can at least check that off my very long long long to do list.

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