“Aiyoh, why is your boy so skinny? Do you feed him?” You’re tired of hearing this from your friends and family members every time they meet your little sprout. But no matter how much you try to get him to eat, or how much he actually eats, your mini-me just doesn’t seem to put on weight.
Yet, your child’s lack of bulk may be due to factors other than not eating enough ― this could range from genetics, a high activity level, and insufficient vitamins to picky eating. So, don’t be fooled into thinking that skinny means that he or she is fit.
Some parents may let junior eat all the junk food they want, in the mistaken belief that this will help them gain some mass. However, unhealthy eating can lead to many health problems in the future such as blocked arteries and obesity. Start training him to eat right from young, and help junior gain weight the healthy way!
Infographic: Paulyn Ng
1. Nutritious carbohydrates
Complex carbohydrates like sweet potatoes, whole grains and quinoa pack more nutrients while taking longer to digest. Also, whole grains like brown or unpolished (red) rice are fibre-rich, and are therefore, good for bowel movements. They also contain lactic acid, which boosts “good bacteria” to support digestion, promote better absorption of nutrients, and even power the body’s immune system.
Fish such as wild salmon and snapper are full of protein and Omega-3, which can help with the development of the cardiovascular system and absorption of nutrients, as well as improve eye function.
Chickpeas, kidney beans, soybeans and green beans are high in protein, vitamins and fibre and will help to enhance eyesight and bowel movements. This, in turn, ramps up kiddo’s appetite!
Eggs contain protein, folate and iron, which help to grow healthy cells and boost oxygen circulation in the body.
5. Seeds and nuts
Snacking on seeds and nuts that are high in monounsaturated fats, protein and calories can help your tot put on weight healthfully.
6. Snacking on seeds and nuts that are high in monounsaturated fats, protein and calories can help your tot put on weight healthfully.
7. Dairy products
Rich in calcium and fat, consuming dairy products like milk and cheese helps strengthen bones and teeth.
Bananas, avocados and dried fruit (raisins, cranberries, figs) are rich in protein. They are a great source of energy for your active tot as well. If junior gets peckish, slice some bananas and spread some peanut butter over them for a yummy afternoon snack!
Main photo: iStock
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