Protein for a fussy eater

(10 Posts)
LucyLocketLostHerPocket Sun 21-Feb-16 09:47:48

I have a very fussy 5yr old who has always had a pretty limited diet which is very carb heavy. Doesn't do much meat or veg and cheese or eggs rarely. Has whole milk and likes a variety of fruit but it's not enough is it.

I hate the idea of making food an issue and I think peer pressure etc will make her eat different things as she gets older but I've been wondering how I can increase her protein intake in the meantime.

I am thinking about buying some organic whey concentrate (no yucky things added) to add to her food once a day. It's really hard to find good advice about this though. I have seen child specific protein powder in Boots but it's full of sugar and other stuff and I'm not sure adding a sweet milkshake to her diet will be helpful at all.

If anyone has more knowledge about this sort of thing I would really appreciate any advice. She's fine height wise and definitely not under weigh in fact she's a bit heavy but it's not surprising when nearly everything she eats is bread based.

AnotherTimeMaybe Sun 21-Feb-16 09:52:38

I'm using a pea protein powder for mine
It does have vanilla but I don't think it has sugar
I mix it in the yogurt x

Scootergrrrl Sun 21-Feb-16 10:02:24

What about things like pancakes and eggy bread (or French toast if you're posh!)?

LucyLocketLostHerPocket Sun 21-Feb-16 10:14:12

Another - do you know I thought protein powders were usually whey. Is there a reason why you're not using dairy?
Scooter - eggy bread no and pancakes yes with sugar which is not great.

IndomitabIe Sun 21-Feb-16 10:15:18

There's a surprising amount of protein in foods you wouldn't think.

Protein requirement is generally calculated at 1g per kg body weight. So if you have a 20kg child (I'm guessing, my nearly 5yo is littler than most!) they'd need about 20g protein per day.

The average slice of white bread has around 3ish g protein, so if she has two slices of toast for breakfast, you're already up to at least 6g (more if you're giving 50/50 or brown bread).

There's about 1g protein in a table spoon of peas, 1g in 45g potatoes (80g chips), there's about 1.5g in the splash of milk you'd put in tea.

I would guess she's getting enough as it is, so don't worry about adding anything extra as such. Gentle broadening of horizons as she grows, as you're no doubt already doing!

IndomitabIe Sun 21-Feb-16 10:17:53

Oh, yoghurts are usually 2-3g each (difficult to find one less than 2g), will she eat ham in sandwiches?

Pasta is quite high in protein (relatively, anyway, when you're trying to restrict it!) - a child's portion may be around 3g (check the packet).

LucyLocketLostHerPocket Sun 21-Feb-16 10:41:37

Thank you Indomitable. She eats fresh egg pasta, bread and yes ham in sausages. She actually weighs about 4 stone which isn't great but she's been kind of chunky since she was 7 months old and DHs side of the family are very apple shaped women so I think she takes after his side more.
Maybes she does get enough then, I just worry I think but she's bright, active and clever so not obviously under nourished. I just keep reading that protein is key to everything.

I worry about my teenage DD too as she's a fussy vegetarian who'd live on sugar if she could but I guesstgeresatine when you've told the a million times and it's up to them.

IndomitabIe Sun 21-Feb-16 11:09:26

Sounds like the 5yo is getting plenty for now.

The veggie-teen will need more, but if you apply the 1g/kg idea (I'm not a dietician, but teens might need slightly more than the rest of us, but it's a good starting point) then she might be doing ok. But I've worked with teens whose vegetarian ideals outstrip their palate-maturity (does that make sense? I'm a bit sleep deprived!).

Will the teen eat quorn- type foods? A bit of these with eggs & cheese & yoghurts should see her through (till she can appreciate a good dhal!)

Western culture includes far more protein than we actually need. And if you've grown up on meat & boiled veg in the 70s & 80s we have an ingrained idea that we should be eating meat every day. But that's overkill, really.

AnotherTimeMaybe Sun 21-Feb-16 11:16:59

OP he's dairy free that's why we don't do whey
The one we are using is called vital protein pea protein isolate it tastes great too

LucyLocketLostHerPocket Sun 21-Feb-16 12:35:37

Thanks Indomitable, it's funny isn't it that the one I was really concerned about is probably ok and the one I've just let get on with it lately should be more of a concern. She does eat some quorn stuff but only if it doesn't have a meaty texture (tricky). It doesn't help that she's not keen on vegetables either. Foods just not her thing unless it's a cake.

Another - DD is ok with dairy but I'll have a look anyway as I do think you can over do it and an alternative would be good if I decide to buy some.

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