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Mom2Chickadee

Proud Parent
Jun 2, 2014
150
So, my 6 year old DD has always been very slender and tall for her age, meaning she's normally in the 80th or higher percentile for height and has been as low a the 5 percentile for weight. Our doctor has always kept a close eye on this, but she's a fussier eater who does eat lots of "good" stuff so I've never been super concerned. However, recently I'm noticing with increased gym hours (9 hour per week) she has become nothing but muscle and bones, there is no fat on this child what so ever! I mean her gym shorts (bootie shorts) are baggy around her legs.

With the amount of time and strength conditioning they're doing in the gym I'm starting to get concerned that she has no more muscle to build and think we may have to work on putting some weight on her...not for her gymnastics future but for her own health. Do people have some good (picky eater friendly) recipes that they could share to help bulk her up a bit?

This feels like a ridiculous question, but should I be concerned that she's too skinny for gymnastics? Is that even possible?
 

COz

Proud Parent
Jan 21, 2014
1,484
If she's not eating enough she'll be tired and lack energy.
If she's eating a decent diet (I'm assuming you would have mentioned if she were vegetarian) she's probably fine, just skinny. She is only 6 after all.

I've seen a few girls (and boys) like her. I always wonder where they keep their muscles :)
Even the ones who aren't super skinny tend to have low enough body fat to have visible 6-packs at that age and that many hours.

Will she eat nuts?
I remember a thread a while ago where someone mentioned making smoothies will ground almonds in it or a little protein powder.

Oh, and it may be the shorts she's wearing. I used to buy ones online and they never fit very well and didn't hug around the legs. Changing the shorts may make you feel better :)
 
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profmom

Proud Parent
Nov 18, 2011
9,461
Region 7
Owner and operator of two string beans. Increasing fat and calories helps. If she's a milk drinker, you can go with full fat or encourage her to eat some ice cream every day. Avocados are also great if she'll eat them (one of mine does and one doesn't). The workouts should make her hungrier, so it's just a matter of thinking about how many calories you can pack into the bulk she consumes.
 

poodlemomma

Proud Parent
Jul 11, 2014
125
53
My oldest son was like this. I just looked for the most calorie/protein dense foods I could find. I did try Pediasure. It didn't work for him. It made him full and then he really wouldn't eat. I never did low fat with him either. It was whole milk, peanut butter, add in protein powders, non low fat yogurt mixed with so many things, etc. At 18, he still isn't a very big person. It just is who he is.
 

Iwannabemargo

Numpty Watcher
Proud Parent
Aug 28, 2011
6,962
UK
I have one too (must have skipped a generation). I just make sure I calorie load.

I also have the problem that she has poor teeth and so the dentist wants us to lower her sugar consumption.

She eats shed loads of milk products, all full fat, so cheese, yoghurt, milk, cream.

I make sure she snacks often, before gym she will eat carb heavy meals, like pasta, rice, pizza, afterwards she will have a sugary snack and something milky so hot chocolate, yoghurt etc. I make sure she eats before and after practice every time.
 

Mom2Chickadee

Proud Parent
Jun 2, 2014
150
Thanks all for the replies. I think switching to whole milk and full fat products is a great idea. She does like smoothies too so I can probably sneak some extra calories in there. She does eat a lot of pasta and normally has a good snack at the end of practice. Not sure if she likes nuts, since school and gym are nut free we don't have a lot of nut products around. I should pick some up for snacks at home though and give that a shot. She's not a big fan of meat but not a vegetarian either. Thanks again!
 

MILgymFAM

Proud Parent
Fan
Feb 6, 2014
4,717
42
Twin Cities
My ODD is like this. She was always over the top of the height chart and off the bottom of the weight. It made ballet teachers drool, but it made gymnastic coaches groan. Her old HC thought she could never gain the kind of strength she would need, but she just kept getting stronger. She was all muscle and bone for awhile, and then the muscles began to fill out. She is still very slim, but definitely not skin and bones. I didn't vary her diet at all. By all measures she is very heathy and thriving, so she must be doing everything ok..
 

skschlag

Staff member
Gold Membership
Proud Parent
Jul 19, 2011
11,282
Region 9
Sigh. I have 3 of those, including my husband. ODS is 6'3" and 120 lbs dripping wet. Try finding jeans that are 28/36! LOL. YDS (gymnast) is not quite as thin, but definitely has that lanky shape (can you be short and lanky?) DH is like 5'11" and 140. SO my whole life is making sure that the 3 of them get enough calories.

I 2nd/3rd/4th the whole milk. It doesn't add a ton of fat, but it helps. Mine will do it with instant breakfast as well. You can request at the store for whole fat milk powder (the stuff on teh shelf is non-fat). I used that for years in milk, smoothies, mac and cheese, etc. I try to stay away from most protein powders as they are formulated for adults.

Other ideas: we do LOTS of eggs, avocado (if they won't do that, try guacamole), cheese, salmon, hummus, nut butters, etc.

I have been trying to inherit their metabolism for years, but I just can't seem to do it.....sigh. I will forever be making them full fat stuff while trying to lose weight myself.
 

COz

Proud Parent
Jan 21, 2014
1,484
She's not a big fan of meat but not a vegetarian either.
Don't tell anyone, but I find adding salt makes them eat more meat...

I 2nd/3rd/4th the whole milk. It doesn't add a ton of fat, but it helps. Mine will do it with instant breakfast as well. You can request at the store for whole fat milk powder (the stuff on teh shelf is non-fat). I used that for years in milk, smoothies, mac and cheese, etc. I try to stay away from most protein powders as they are formulated for adults.
.
Wow! It's heaps easier to get full fat stuff in Australia (milk powder etc). How odd.
The protein powder from supermarkets doesn't have a lot of extra stuff in it that I recall, just do it by weight, ie. 6 yo is what, 1/3 or 1/4 of an adult's weight and then reduce it further so you feel comfortable, aren't giving ridiculous amounts to annoy the kidneys. Particularly useful if they don't eat milk. Check if it is milk or egg based if your child has allergies.

Oh, and chocolate is good too. But dentists may disagree.
I'll go and hide now :rolleyes:
 

COz

Proud Parent
Jan 21, 2014
1,484
Oh one other thing, particularly for little ones like 6 year olds. You might find that they have trouble putting on weight if they are drinking a lot of milk. I know two parents of 6 year olds with skinny kids who have seen dietitians and been advised to cut back on the amount of milk their children are drinking. In both cases this has increased their appetite and they have gained weight.
I think the advice was no more than 500mL (less than a pint) of milk a day for a child that age.
 

Iwannabemargo

Numpty Watcher
Proud Parent
Aug 28, 2011
6,962
UK
blimey, mine drinks way more than that and always has !

I make lots of cakes, but have replaced half the sugar with sucralose to help Pink's teeth, plus she will eat a full English Breakfast every day if allowed so that bumps up the calories. I just shove food in at every oppotunity
 

Mom2Chickadee

Proud Parent
Jun 2, 2014
150
What exactly is a full English Breakfast? Excuse my ignorance ;-). DD does eat more in the mornings than later in the day and breakfast foods (eggs, pancakes, etc) are some of her favourites.
 

Iwannabemargo

Numpty Watcher
Proud Parent
Aug 28, 2011
6,962
UK
oh boy, weeeeeelll

bacon, eggs, baked beans, sausage, Hogs Pudding ( local delicacy, like Black pudding (boudin noir) but without the blood), toast, fried potato.

(daddy makes it - the sight of all that food first thing makes me want to heave)
 

wgymmom

Proud Parent
Aug 21, 2013
742
DD is very slender. She's around the 8th %ile, I think? Pretty low, but not below 5th. She's solid muscle too. In fact, I don't think she would have broken 65 lbs yet without all that gym training! Our doctor wasn't concerned though, because she's always been on the petite side, as has my non-gymmie DD.
 

SignHere

Proud Parent
Jul 11, 2011
518
I was wondering about protein powder... Since it says on the label not to feed to the kiddos.
 

beachgirl

Proud Parent
Judge
Nov 7, 2013
1,288
56
I have an almost 14 year old boy that weighs 63 or 64 lbs ( depending on time of day). He was stuck at 60 lbs for almost 3 years. Last summer I started adding Carnation Instant Breakfast to his milk every morning and he gained 3 or 4 lbs over the summer. My daughter ( the gymnast), age 9, weighs the same as her brother and is super embarrassed about it. At her last check up the doctor said she was overweight for her height. She showed him her 6 pack and he felt her thigh muscles and made a note in her chart. I don't think he will ever say that again.
 

NMNorskie

Proud Parent
Aug 13, 2014
106
The Land of Enchantment
I have one who's not a vegetarian, but not a big meat eater. I actually AM a vegetarian, so I'm very conscious of the need for protein. One thing that I've done since she started gymnastics is buy a yogurt maker. I make full-fat Greek yogurt, which has tons of protein and is beyond delicious (serious, it's SO creamy and good!). Yogurt makers aren't very expensive, and it pays for itself quickly if you've been buying store yogurt. Plus it doesn't have all of the sweeteners and crap that the store stuff has.

Another thing I think is helpful is to have them help make meals. My kids are way more willing to eat (and eat more) when they help cook it. Amazon has lots of good cookbooks; we especially like the Betty Crocker one and the Cooking Light one. The recipes are genuinely good, and it makes them feel proud to have their own cookbooks, choose the recipe for dinner, etc.
 

COz

Proud Parent
Jan 21, 2014
1,484
blimey, mine drinks way more than that and always has !
Only an issue if they're not getting adequate nutrition or there is concern about their weight. This also seems mostly a concern around the preschool/early school years.
Too much milk (for the child's size) means they're too full to want to eat other nutritious stuff and end up missing out. Can also be associated with lower iron levels for the same reason.

If the child is healthy and eating a good diet then not a problem. Just something work considering if a super skinny child is drinking bucket loads of milk to the exclusion of, well, food :)

I'm a great believer in some kids are just skinny. If they're doing 9 hours of gym at 6 and not seeming overly tired they sound pretty healthy!
I'm pretty sure a lot of 6 year olds photosynthesize, it's the only explanation I have for some fussy kids who seem to eat virtually nothing :)
 
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