BAD APPETITE TO BON APPETITE
The most challenging time while raising a child is when the child’s health depreciates due to loss of appetite. The child starts to lose interest in eating food if the food is not good enough, or the taste is not according to their choice. There are several other factors involved that affect the child’s health and appetite among which the relationship with parents and other family members, environment and surroundings, trauma, or any kind of anxiety or stress is at the top priority of the list. The child may show various signs of appetite loss and stop eating properly.
Parents are always concerned about the child’s growth and try to provide the overall nutrients that are required to raise a healthy child, but at some point, the child constantly starts to refuse to eat or eat a very small amount of food that is not appropriate as per the body requirements.
Parents need to discuss with the child and get to know the root cause of the problem. If it is a social or environmental factor then they should provide comfort to the child and try to sort out the issues first. If the problem is a lack of interest in food items that are being served then the meal plan should be upgraded.
Serve your child some nutrient-dense food such as seeds, nuts, avocados, root vegetables, etc.
Serve small meals, but add small portions of various items and give them the choice to choose what they want to eat.
Try to feed your child easily digestible foods which are enriched with Vitamin C such as oranges, lemons, or strawberries, as vitamin C helps in better absorption of the other minerals too.
Iron deficiency can be the biggest cause of loss of appetite, feed your child iron-rich foods such as spinach, lentils, and eggs.
Serve good fats such as peanut butter, olive oil, nuts, eggs, soybeans, etc.
Keep your child well hydrated, and don’t forget that water works wonders in working up the metabolism and controls the appetite very well.
Avoid using too many dairy products in case of low appetite, as they contain extra fats and keep the belly full for a longer time, and may inhibit frequent meals.
You can also develop and enhance the child’s appetite by involving them in helping to prepare and cook family meals, showing your child how much fun cooking is and how you enjoy the meal while eating it. Family time will bring positive changes in the child’s attitude, therefore making mealtime a happy, friendly, regular, and social family time. Sit together and serve your child the same food as the rest of the family, let your child observe how everyone enjoys the meal time, and allow your child to touch, lick, taste, and play with the food. Let them feed themselves, in this way your child will get all the required nutritional benefits of a wide range of foods and will start to accept new tastes, textures, and a variety of foods.