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4 year old constantly wants food(6 Posts)
DS turns 5 in August. No health problems and very bright. Since he was about 3 he’s always loved his food but it’s becoming a real problem now, as the whole day seems to revolve around him nagging for food and snacks. When he does eat, it’s very quick and he barely seems to taste it. Typical day’s intake is:
Breakfast: (about 7.30am)
-Porridge with raisins and banana (no sugar)
-2 weetabix and semi skimmed milk
He always has an apple after breakfast.
Snack about 10am:
-piece of fruit
-Ham sandwich (olive oil spread, usually whole meal bread)
-1/2 bag Pom Bears
-Little Yeo yoghurt
- sometimes another apple
Snack after school:
-pasta with sauce and grated cheese, or tuna
-omelette and low sugar beans
- sandwich/fruit/yoghurt combo if he’s had a large school dinner
He only drinks water - doesn’t like milk as a drink, or any kind of squash.
He was just over 9lb at birth so has always been big, and right now is just on the border of healthy/overweight. DH, DD and I all slim. But he nags food food and snacks constantly. I can’t go in the kitchen or open a packet without him asking what it is and can he have some. Days out involve him sprinting to the nearest bench/seating area and asking can we sit and have a snack. If we go past a cafe or he spots an ice cream shop he tries to hurry us round and wails if we don’t go in (we do occasionally, as a treat).
His sister is 2 and eats like a bird, and we’ve been told by the HV to offer her additional snacks - which causes DS to cry because he’s not always allowed what she has. I can’t ever make myself an impromptu slice of toast or grab an apple without him hovering round and often crying if he’s not allowed it. These Easter holidays have been relentless with him watching the clock for ‘snack time’ and asking for more food about half an hour after he’s finished his breakfast. He’s always got a bottle of water on the go which I remind him frequently to drink from (he had a UTI last year so I’m very aware of the need to drink enough).
Anyone had similar?
Have a bowl with small pieces of fruit and plain muesli bars that he can have any time if he feels hungry. Keep carrot sticks in the fridge so you can quickly give him a couple any time he asks.
He may be asking all the time, not because he is hungry, but because he is worried about BECOMING hungry later and not having any access to food so he needs to ask now while there's the opportunity of getting some food. If he can get his own food without having to ask that might stop.
Take him to the gp/nurse just to make sure there are no underlying issues causing this hunger.
It may be that he's having a long growth spurt and just needs slightly bigger portions or it could be a comfort thing. Best to get him checked x
Increase protein in the snacks - Pom bears etc are empty calories so won’t satisfy for long
You are giving a lot of industrial food and zero vegetables.
Try preparing real food, and he will probably feel fuller
Can you cook for lunch or dinner:
- chicken breast
- a sole
- homemade meatballs in tomato sauce with to without peas
And give some broccolini, green bean, roasted brussel sprouts, braised pumpkin, cherry tomatoes, a cucumber salad, bake some kale chips, cook risotto, a rich soup, a meatloaf, .... I could continue endlessly.
Pom bear, all these oats bars/cake which are probably loaded with sugar, little yeos, a ton of fruit will not be filling and make him ravenous.
My four year old is exactly the same. Constantly asks for food throughout the day and wants to know what's for each of her meals ages in advance!
I put it down to boredom a lot of the time, and comfort (which was mentioned previously) Not sure how you get around it if food is a comfort for them in some way. It's a tricky one and it does drive me mad so I can totally sympathise!
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