HELP! Dr says 10yr old girl underweight

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-09-2003
HELP! Dr says 10yr old girl underweight
14
Tue, 09-09-2003 - 8:34pm
My 10 year old daughter had her school physical today and her doctor says she is severely underweight for her height. He advised to up her calorie intake and concentrate on meats and vegetables. She is also now borderline anemic. What should I do?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 05-02-2003
Wed, 09-10-2003 - 1:04am
((((Hugs))))

I always find it hard to ask relevant questions immediately after I'm surprised by something the doctor says. It's only afterward that I think of all the things that I wanted/needed to ask. I'd write out a list of those questions, then call the doctor to get them cleared up. If you're still unsure of how to proceed with her diet, perhaps you could get a referral to a nutritionist who could give you some pointers to help her gain weight and increase her iron levels.

Please keep us updated as you can.

Best Always,

Sherrie

Sherrie Rainbow

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-09-2003
Wed, 09-10-2003 - 11:27am
Thanks, Sherrie! I have already started the list and I'm going to call the doctor this afternoon. It was definitely a shock to hear the doctor say that and that they are things that could cause serious health problems, especially when you think that your children are pretty healthy! She's never been a big eater, but I always thought she made good food selections. Her and her brother don't drink soda and both enjoy a variety of fruits and vegetables. None of us are big meat eaters, but I always try to include other forms of protein in their diets. Both of them have taken a multi-vitamin for years and are both very active. Lexi plays soccer and basketball and is a cheerleader and Tezzy plays baseball and basketball and does karate. It was definitely a shock, so thanks for helping me calm down and approach this logically. That is hard to do sometimes when it comes to your children........right?!?!?!?! Anyway, thanks again and I love these message boards so you will definitely continue to see me in the future!

KIM

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-02-2003
Wed, 09-10-2003 - 12:03pm
It was definitely a shock, so thanks for helping me calm down and approach this logically. That is hard to do sometimes when it comes to your children........right?!?!?!?!

------------------------------------------------------------------------

Hard? Try nearly impossible for me LOL. I'm glad I was able to help!! I look forward to "seeing" more of you soon. Please keep us updated on DD.

Best Always,

Sherrie

co-CL

Sherrie Rainbow

Avatar for suzyk2118
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-30-1997
Wed, 09-10-2003 - 3:39pm
Take a look at these links and see if you agree with your doctor's opinion:

http://www.kidsource.com/kidsource/content/hg/pg13.html

http://www.cdc.gov/growthcharts/

The second one leads you to more links on body mass index and such as well. I hope these help.

Sue

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-02-2003
Wed, 09-10-2003 - 4:06pm
Thanks for posting these, this is great information IMO.

Best Always,

Sherrie

Sherrie Rainbow

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Thu, 09-11-2003 - 12:31am
My daughter is underweight too. But not by much. She has consitantly been in and around the same percentile for five or six years.

She dances for seven hours a week on her dance team. She plays outside a lot, so she burns a lot of body fat (I should have her problem)

I try to give her as many vegetables as possible...she will eat scrambled eggs with cheese, most meats...and loves Broccoli. You should also give her a multi vitamin. I suggest the "Flinstones Complete" (they are yummy)

Let her have ice cream, P-nut butter, Oveltine (chocolate milk stuff). BUT other than being mindful of WHAT she eats...don't stress about how much she eats, it will only make things worse.

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-09-2003
Thu, 09-11-2003 - 2:12am
Thank you for the links. According to the information they provide with my daughter's specific information, she is barely above the 50th percentile for her weight but above the 95th percentile for her height. Hopefully, she just needs to grow into her height a little bit!! Thanks again!
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Thu, 09-11-2003 - 4:52am
I was 10-20% underweight my entire childhood. IOW, my height percentile was about 90, but my weight percentile was much lower. All of us who have my dad's genes are like this. My little halfsister is a stick destined to become 6 feet tall.

I think it is important to separate weight from nutrition. The anemia would worry me, IOW, the weight would not. Concentrate on making sure that her diet is as excellent as you can possibly make it. Instead of pumping calories in the kid, rather make sure that every calorie she does consume packs maximum nutritional value. One example would be cookies. When dd wasn't eating well, I used to make my own cookies. I would reduce the sugar and add a cup of finely ground walnuts, dried apricots and raisins. I also used to make batches of pureed soups and freeze them in portions. It is easy to make a pureed soup with a flavor the kid likes, but at the same time add some spinach, some meat and anything else you think she needs. Make them with a milk bechamel and you have added calcium and calories as well. Bechamel can be made with olive oil instead of butter. The portions can be nuked quickly and makes a better snack than a stick of string cheese. For breakfast I make my kid oatmeal from raw oats and milk. I add other rolled grains, chopped nuts, sunflower seeds and chopped dried fruit. Dried fruits and nuts are high in minerals, calories and for apricots also iron.

Don't feel bad, just take some action.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-05-1998
Thu, 09-11-2003 - 9:37am
We went through this with my son last year, when he was 9. He was tired, achy, and seemed to be losing weight. I was imagining all kinds of terrible things (leukemia, juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, etc.), so we took him in to the doctor. She ran a bunch of tests, and they all came back fine. But when she plotted his weight and height, he had gone from being in the 60th percentile for height to the 95th.

Turns out he was just growing faster than his body could keep up with. She basically told us to let him eat as much as he wanted of good food (if he wanted seconds or thirds at dinner, fine) and said to include more pasta and baked potatoes and ice cream, yogurt, and cheese. In a few months, his growth spurt slowed down and his weight and height evened out again. Now he's fine.

Take care of the anemia and I bet the weight issue will resolve itself.

Elizabeth

mom to three DS, 12, 10, and 7, and one DD, 9 months

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-09-2003
Thu, 09-11-2003 - 10:29am
Thank you for your message. Sometimes it makes such a difference to hear someone else has gone through the same thing, and everything worked out okay. I have made an appointment with a nutritionist and she is going to set up a diet for Lexi concentrating on iron rich foods and healthy foods to help her gain some weight. The nutritionist said this is just a growing time for her and she is probably just going to have her dad's build - he is 6'2" and weighs around 170 lbs. The nutritionist said the important thing is to make sure she is getting everything she needs from her diet to sustain her body and that her metabolism will determine her weight after that! Thank you so much for your support!!

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