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Hungry all the time! What do you do?

(12 Posts)
Mamabear12 Fri 16-Jan-15 21:50:55

If your child says they are hungry all day long, what do you do? I feel bad trying to distract and not give food. But I feel I must start. Sometimes I feel like she does not have an off button. She is almost 3 and has always had a good appetite. She eats tons of veggies, fruits, meats, carbs, and other snacks. My worry is right after breakfast she demans a snack on the way to school. When I pick her up she demands snack and that is RIGHT after lunch! Her school says she has seconds and has a REALLY good appetite. So why the heck does she need snack when I pick her up if she just had lunch!? Sometimes she keeps asking until I relent and give in. She is quite active and she seems to burn off all the food! But can a child really eat all day long?,!? The only breaks she has w me is when I can distract her w park, ballet, gymnastics, art etc. but in between activities she always asks for snacks and right after meals! Is this normal for some kids to have such a big appetite? I don't mind, it's just that I wonder if I need to be more strict and guide her to eat less. For example, maybe she doesn't realize she is full or had enough?

MoreSnowPlease Fri 16-Jan-15 21:54:26

Yes, especially when they do activities, particularly gymnastics.

Does she eat much fat? What does a typical day look like in terms of food and activity?

GlitzAndGigglesx Fri 16-Jan-15 21:57:47

She might be thirsty not hungry. A lot of people mistake thirst for hunger

NickyEds Sat 17-Jan-15 15:05:00

If she's not over weight, the snacks are reasonably healthy and she isn't snacking in place of proper meals then I'd just give her the food. If she isn't over weight and you reduce her food and keep her activity the same then surely she'll start to lose weight?

NickyEds Sat 17-Jan-15 15:07:36

Oh and children are actually much better than adults at regulating their food and knowing when they're full.

purplemurple1 Sat 17-Jan-15 15:13:21

I let mine eat but I do offer him water all the time just in case it is thirst. I also fill him up with lots of veggies as he is a little chubby (16months, 13kgs, 82cm).

Mamabear12 Sun 18-Jan-15 20:17:04

I generally just feed her when she says she is hungry. But I have started to delay it a little when she says she is hungry right after she ate a large meal! A typical day goes like :

Upon waking - bottle of 6 ounces whole fat milk mixed w 3 oz water
Breakfast - eggs, toast w peanut butter, or wheatabix w yogurt or fruit purée
Snack on way to school - cheese or bread sticks or crackers, or fruit
At school she gets a snack in morning too - I am told its fruit or biscuit
Lunch - lunch is a three course meal starting w salad, main and desert! I am told she eats really well and gets seconds. I even witnessed her getting seconds of desert (after she ate her main) and even getting a biscuit after and then telling me she wants snack straight after as she got into the buggy!
Snack on way home some times if she insists - fruit purée or banana or baby puffs or bread sticks
When we get home she relaxes w cartoons bc she no longer naps - with a bottle same as morning
Snack - fruit and baby biscuit, cheese, or bread sticks
Dinner - pasta w broccoli (loves broccoli) or rice w chicken etc. yogurt after
6oz milk w 3 oz water befor bed

She also is offered water during day and at school the squeeze their own oj juice. At one point, they had to keep the oj juice maker away until afternoons, bc she would come in (when she was part of breakfast club) and go straight to orange juice make for some juice!

I am not too worried bc she eats vegetables and meats etc. well rounded diet. I am just concernd a little she does not seem to know when she is full sometimes. I mean, sometimes she knows when to stop eating, but sometimes she asks for more more more and I'm like omg! And I tell her no more. I guess that is normal?

Oh and purplemurple, my daughter used to be 98th centile for weight and was a littl chubby, but around 20 months, when she started walking more and more. She. Lost the baby fat. She didn't lose weight, but didn't gain as fast and grew tall and slimme out. And of course, we always feed her well. It was just bc she moving around more.

RabbitSaysWoof Sun 18-Jan-15 21:06:39

Could she have just learned to fill some free time eating? does she chill without asking for food often? I'm not a believer that children should never be hungry tbh, I think it's a natural part of the eating cycle to feel hungry sometimes and we should all be at ease with mild hunger so we don't end up eating to prevent it ever occurring. I know her diet is great tho, but you say she asks for food between activities rather than when she is busy I think it sounds like a default setting to boredom or just not knowing what else to do with herself.

Mamabear12 Sun 18-Jan-15 21:54:55

Rabbit, actually that is what I'm afraid of! You are right. It seems she asks for food when she is bored. Or not being distracted. I started the bad habit of feeding her in the buggy when nursery used to be twenty mins walk home. She would cry and have a huge fit, unless I fed her whole time in buggy! She would cry so hard and for whole twenty mins every time. I am not sure why, and no it was not an option carry her home bc I was heavily pregnant and she was too young to walk far...16-19 months at the time. So it guess it started there. But now it seems she wants a snack all the time. Unless she is distracted w activity.

RabbitSaysWoof Sun 18-Jan-15 22:24:13

Its a hard thing to break. I think there will be some tantrums to get through before she learns to distract herself. Its really great that she is not turning down her nutritious table food tho despite the snacking smile
A few things I can suggest are to, eat at the table always so she loses association with eating whilst watching tv/ cuddling up with you/ sitting in the buggy/ car seat. Tell her what her eating times are so when she says 'I'm hungry' you can show her on the clock when it will next be time to eat or reassure her it's ok and normal to feel hunger by saying something like 'me too, I cant wait for our dinner we will have ....... tonight' and encourage her to drink water.
I bet someone will be along soon for more practical ideas to hep her distract herself with activity or learn to just relax without a crutch.

Mamabear12 Mon 19-Jan-15 10:08:52

What about for my 15 month old ds who is always wanting snack in buggy? Okay, partially my fault. But I give snacks so they don't scream and cry for twenty mins in the buggy. Daughter getting better at explaining things to. But son, he doesn't understand. Do I let him scream, which is stressful and unpleasant for me or give him snacks? I know it's not the best idea to give him snacks to distract. He will end up eating all day like his sister! How do other people do it? How do ur kids just sit in the buggy? Mine will have to be in buggy for 20-40 mins due to nursery run or going to park or grocery. Wish these kids would just relax and enjoy the scenery!

RabbitSaysWoof Mon 19-Jan-15 16:55:58

Tell me about it!! Mine fusses about the buggy too, I have to leave extra time so he can piss around getting out to walk, then back in when he's tired, and yes he has had a screaming phase still and still fusses when I put him back in sometimes, I have to just let him or we won't get anywhere.
I have a friend who brags she has the most chilled out kid ever and judges people who cant take their dc shopping for hours or to the hair dressers, but I've never seen the boy without a rice cake (and he doesn't eat meals now) IMO she has a very pacified child not a laid back one.
There was a thread on here about this buggy hood someone had found that had a slot for an i pad and the reaction was unanimously that it's awful, the op was like 'well it stops dd screaming in the buggy' and the much 'better' parents where falling all over themselves to suggest an apple to chomp on instead. I'm not an expert on anything, obviously you can ignore me but I strongly think fixing any problem other than genuine hunger with food is emotional eating, and that preventing mild hunger sends a message too that it's something dangerous to run scared from. It's something I focus on avoiding because I have to try very hard not to go open the kitchen cupboards when I'm bored, it's ingrained in me to pick for 'something to do' I remember as a child saying 'I'm hungry' because I couldn't think of anything else to do, but I didn't really know the meaning of the word hungry.
But it is widely accepted that bored children can be occupied with food as long as it's healthy food, that upsets me a bit because it's still an unhealthy habit, and the child is not learning to cope with boredom they are actively avoiding learning that. This book was great for me

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