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3 year old constantly hungry, what can I feed her?

(45 Posts)
CbeebiesIsMyLife Tue 21-Jan-14 10:42:25

I just put this in Food, but thought some people over here might have some ideas too?

I don't know what else to try. Since starting nursery in the afternoons a few weeks back dd1 just seems constantly hungry.

This morning she's eaten, a banana, a handful of raisins, a handful of grapes, 2 bowls of cereal, a cereal bar and 3 digestive biscuits. She's also finished off her sisters bowl of cereal and her sister breakfast bar

She's not bored and is happily playing, but keeps telling me she's hungry. I've started giving her her water bottle when she says she's hungry, I was thinking she may be thirsty but its made little difference. She's begging me for lunch already with tears and I'm finding I'm making her lunch earlier and earlier every day. At the moment lunch time is around 11am.

She wakes up between 5 and 6 am and has snack time at 9/10 ish.

What can I give her to fill her up in the morning? she doesn't like porridge or weatabix or anything 'sloppy'

When she gets home from nursery its the same, I give her a snack at 4, we have dinner at 5 and she's still telling me she's hungry as I'm putting her to bed.

She's not over eating as she's very slim and putting on very little weight (the health visitor was concerned about her lack of weight last time we saw her, but her dietitian, who we no longer see, was happy so no further action was taken), so I genuinely think she's hungry.

I need some new quick and easy ideas for a filling breakfast (I'm 24 weeks pregnant with a 2 year old and a 3 year old, I really cant do fussy!) Please help!

CbeebiesIsMyLife Tue 21-Jan-14 17:18:07

Quint I wouldn't say she's having a lot of sugary processes carbs... Is she? I thought I was doing ok in the nutritional stakes. I thought it was balanced out over the day. Up until around a year ago she was seeing a dietitian because of an allergy she's grown out of. Her sister was seeing the same dietitian until about 4 months ago, I kept strict food diaries and she saw everything I gave them (even the odd sweet and chocolate) she saw the bad days where I had 2 under 2 to look after and was very very ill and gave them toast 3 times a day spaced with fruit and the good days where I gave them proper food and she thought their diet was fine. It hasn't changed since. I really didn't think I was doing that bad a job sad

Thanks for the recipes Andi I'll take a look later and try some out (I know what you mean about the moon placement!)

QuintessentialShadows Tue 21-Jan-14 18:11:58

"This morning she's eaten, a banana, a handful of raisins, a handful of grapes, 2 bowls of cereal, a cereal bar and 3 digestive biscuits. She's also finished off her sisters bowl of cereal and her sister breakfast bar"

I suggest you look at the contents of the breakfast bars/cereal bars. Raisins are also very sugary. What cereal out of interest?
Cereal bars are processed sugary foods. Equally biscuits. Aside from the bananas and the grapes, I see little of nutritional value, unless the cereals is weetabix.

Instead of starting the day with a cereal bar, I suggest you look for something protein based that will fill her up properly.

AndiMac Tue 21-Jan-14 18:12:53

Today might have been a little heavy on the sugar, depending on what th cereal was, but I personally don't think it was too bad. But the sugar in anything, including fruit, can get used up pretty quickly, leaving little ones hungry faster than you'd expect. Right now I have a similar issue with DS4 who keeps eating tonnes of fruit. Which is good, but really, he needs to eat more at meal times to have it stick to his ribs a bit more, rather than going through 3 pieces of fruit between any two meals. Plus, I need to also do the same as you and make certain there are high protein snacks available.

Doitnicelyplease Tue 21-Jan-14 18:16:20

My 5 year old goes through stages of this, usually is a growth spurt. I know that feeling of being nagged for snacks all day well.

We are trying to overhaul our after school snack at the moment and these are some of the ideas I am trying.

Monday: Homemade baked good such as healthy(ish) banana muffins.
Tuesday: Homemade fruit smoothie made with full fat milk
Wednesday: Apple slices with cheese/crackers
Thursday: Celery/carrot sticks with peanut butter dip
Friday: Edamame beans (good source of protein)

My DD is really fussy but will luckily eat loads of fruit and veg, but they never fill her up, she is also funny about eggs, so it is hard trying to find good snacks.

Solo Tue 21-Jan-14 18:33:31

The Dairylea 'cheese' is very processed. It has quite a lot of salt in it and sugars...

Energy1275kJ/ 305kcal
of which Sugars9.0g
of which Saturates9.5g

AndiMac Tue 21-Jan-14 19:38:20

I don't think 9 grams of sugar per 100g (which is at least double a usual portion size) is a lot. I would agree it's fairly processed.

RawCoconutMacaroon Tue 21-Jan-14 20:20:17

Cheese should have no sugar in it and only trace amounts of carbohydrate... 9g sugar and 22g carb is a lot. Actual cheese has more vitamins and minerals.

TheGreatHunt Tue 21-Jan-14 20:27:44

How about porridge with milk in it for breakfast? Or add a chopped up banana with yoghurt?

Def give chunks of cheese and full fat yoghurt for snacks. Petit filous is low in fat.

Hummus and breadsticks/crackers is another great snack.

Peanut butter is an easy one (although you mentioned allergies?)

My ds is a great one for gorging on carbs so I up the protein intake in his meals eg more meat/fish in there.

QuintessentialShadows Tue 21-Jan-14 20:42:18

Petit Filous is low in fat, but has a very high sugar content.

TheGreatHunt Tue 21-Jan-14 20:44:04

Yes I was suggesting have full fat yoghurt as yoghurts like petit filous are low in fat so no good.

QuintessentialShadows Tue 21-Jan-14 20:45:30

Yes, I agree, I rather my kids have full fat youghurt, than low fat high sugar! It is less processed and more natural.

TheGreatHunt Tue 21-Jan-14 20:48:37

Yes although my dd is difficult to persuade. Thankfully ds loves the stuff. Thank god I've stopped DH buying those dreadful "character" yoghurts!

QuintessentialShadows Tue 21-Jan-14 20:49:06

We are a "frube free" house! grin

TheGreatHunt Tue 21-Jan-14 20:49:55


kitchensinkmum Tue 21-Jan-14 20:56:24

Most children go through a very hungry phase . It can be an indication that their food isn't nutritious enough. Their body can tell them they need more food when in fact they have already had a large quantity but the nutritional content is low
Try home made porridge or eggs for breakfast .
Small snack of oatcake with hummus or nut butter
Or a home made smoothie made with flute and avocado
Hot, home cooked lunch
Small afternoon snack of coconut yoghurt or
Piece of cheese and apple mid afternoon
Lighter supper
Avoid all cereal bars and packet cereal apart from porridge .

gnittinggnome Tue 21-Jan-14 20:57:51

Can't link as on my phone, but look for a recipe online, Google "oaty drops Blueberrygirlinoz" which takes you through to a woman's blog and the most amazing recipe for a sugar-free flapjack. (Currently dealing with gestational diabetes, this recipe has been a life-saver.) Lots of oats, nuts, easily adapted and takes very little time to make but all very filling and healthy.

kitchensinkmum Tue 21-Jan-14 21:10:38

Try a handful of dates and drop of water into food processor . Blits to a paste . In small sauce pan a spoon coconut oil and table spin of raw coco butter , melt on very low heat.
In a bowl mix about mug or organic porridge oats , few Sultanas , table spoon ground flax sees few goji berries. Mix oil/coco butter with puréed dates and oats etc into bowl.
Press into a shallow cake tin, mark out small squares and refrigerate.
You could also add some maca powder and puréed banana
It's a bit like a raw flapjack, firm in texture , travels well and great for hungry toddler , exhausted mums and packed lunches

Onesie Wed 22-Jan-14 21:01:10

Cerial bar, cereal, grapes, raisins, biscuits are all high sugar. Even the banana is high sugar. She needs slow burning stuff and protein. So maybe Eggs with grilled tomatoes followed by porridge served with berries. Water and an apple.

Solo Thu 23-Jan-14 00:41:22

RawCoconut I thought so too.

The OP has already said her Dd dislikes sloppy food like weetabix and ready brek/porridge (from memory).

omama Thu 23-Jan-14 08:45:48

OP I have a similar issue with ds (3.5) so am interested to hear sime different meal suggestions. Trouble I have is that ds is a very fussy eater & struggles with textures. Wont eat anything sloppy eg porridge, gravy/sauce type dinners, refuses potatoes pasta or grains, eggs, meat (except susages/nuggets). He doesnt eat any veg either so the only nutrition he gets is from fruit. His diet is basically cereal, bread, cereal bars, sausage & fruit & he's constantly asking for food to eat. He's MPI too so cheese/yoghurt is off the menu - I just dont know what to give him that is filling & healthy that he will eat. We dont comment whatsoever on what he eats, put food in the middle & self serve, but find that 5 days out of 7 he eats no tea. We do however usually give him a limited choice for breakfast, snack & lunch so I guess maybe we need to offer some alternatives & just tough out the tantrums when its not what he wants?

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