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lilbeetle 04-18-2013 11:26 PM

Young children and low carb
 
My 3 year old has sort of slid into moderate carbing by virtue of being like most 3 years olds, he wants to eat what the big people in his life are eating :)

So he has his cereal for breakfast, and some times helps me eat my eggs.

Has a salad for lunch like I do, and then since I dont make 2 dinners, he gets a LC dinner. If I cook some rice or spuds for DH I put a few on baby's plate, but since he doesnt like potatoes unless they are chips, he wont eat them anyway.

The only real health change we can see is that for the first time ever, he has firm stools. Seriously, all his life to date, he has has stools so loose, they border on diarrehea. We thought he was dairy intolerant but it never went away, no matter how careful and restrictive we were.

Is there any research on small people and LC? I am concerned about nutrition for him - I dont know enough to feel comfortable about him being a strict LCer.

suzanneyea 04-18-2013 11:59 PM

I follow this diet because I believe it is the healthiest way to eat for all people. My one year old eats low carb and is doing great.

Ntombi 04-19-2013 12:16 AM

There is a lot of research on kids with certain medical conditions doing better on a ketogenic diet (it helps tremendously, and is healthy). But your three year old doesn't have to be in ketosis if you're uncomfortable with that. Feeding him a moderately low carb diet, with a few more servings of low-glycemic fruits and veggies than you guys get, works great too. Teaching him to focus on eating healthy servings of meats and non-starchy veggies, with small amounts of starches and fruits is a great lesson for anyone to learn.

Mistizoom 04-19-2013 06:12 AM

I don't think there is anything harmful in it. But for young children with no issues related to weight I think a bit higher carb is fine - for example let him have plenty of fruits and veggies.

I really wish I had not introduced my 10 year old to all the carbs we did. He was born underweight and we were just happy he was gaining when he was little. He's now gone in the opposite direction.

clackley 04-19-2013 06:22 AM

I wish I had known better when my children were young. I would have fed them a lot differently. I would likely have chosen a 'paleo' way with a little dairy but would have kept grains (wheat in particular) out of their life along with processed foods in general. It is a low carb woe but allows for some starchy veg and fruit - although I think that should be kept to a minimum due to the sugar content.

Karerose 04-19-2013 07:58 AM

I also wished I had known back then what I know now. My daughter would have never been given any kind of bread/wheat product. I also would have been choosier on the vegetables I let her eat. Her favorite vegetable was potatoes pretty much any way you made them. She even liked instant mashed potatoes and I always had a box on hand. I would encourage her to mix things in the mashed potatoes to try to get to like them. I really wish I had known better then and saved her all the hard work now.

If I had known then what I know now, but I was new to it and still struggling, I would have totally hidden all the bad choices I might make. I would never have let her know it was an option to have bread and potatoes, etc.

My niece has two extremely fussy eaters, and I cringe when she tells me what they do eat. It seems like almost every day for breakfast they have french toast or pancakes. At holiday meals the only thing I've seen one of them eat is a roll. The other one pretty much eats nothing. They seem to survive on those very high carb breakfasts. They do love dessert though - or at least one of them does. Her mother will not allow them to have any dessert even if it is a holiday unless they eat something, but unfortunately she doesn't realize that a roll or a few bites of corn is much better than the desserts.

nolcjunk 04-19-2013 08:16 AM

I grew up on a lower carb diet- tons of vegetables, fruits, full fat dairy (yogurt, cottage cheese, cheeses, buttermilk), chicken/fish/steak/pork, eggs.

But we also had sugar and grains and beans. I wouldn't cut those things in a child's diet. These foods are not inherently bad, they become bad when a kid is fed cereal, white bread sandwiches, and fast food all in one day and they become overweight. Beans, some grains, and a little bit of sugar add variety to a diet and ensure that they aren't seen as forbidden foods.

We had dessert sometimes and stuff like chips/candy on trips or sleepovers or at parties.

I think the most important thing is to model correct behavior. I saw how my parents ate and they were very healthy. There was no overeating or tons of processed foods and no one ever drank soda. My mom was never on a weight loss plan, she never talked about her weight or her body, and never made our weight a focus. We ate healthy so we could be healthy and everyone was thin and athletic. I would go to other people's houses that fed their kids mostly junk and I saw that as abnormal, so even if I had something like pop tarts(and even then I thought they were disgusting) and soda at someone's house, I would prefer and go back to my regular eating at home and the rest of the time.

Same way that I learned about responsible drinking- I grew up around my parents having drinks with dinner or after dinner drinks, they never got drunk, but they enjoyed them and I even got sips when I became a teenager and wanted to taste them. They taught me that alcohol isnt bad and it wasnt forbidden, so I never had a big desire to go out and drink in secret.

I remember we mostly got a big breakfast in the morning (eggs/some kind of meat/vegetable and tea), then I would skip lunch when I was older because I wasn't hungry, then a meal with fish/meat, a salad, some kind of cooked vegetable and something like a small portion of potatoes/buckwheat/pasta/bread.

abby! 04-19-2013 08:32 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by nolcjunk (Post 16382579)
I grew up on a lower carb diet- tons of vegetables, fruits, full fat dairy (yogurt, cottage cheese, cheeses, buttermilk), chicken/fish/steak/pork, eggs.

But we also had sugar and grains and beans. I wouldn't cut those things in a child's diet. These foods are not inherently bad, they become bad when a kid is fed cereal, white bread sandwiches, and fast food all in one day and they become overweight. Beans, some grains, and a little bit of sugar add variety to a diet and ensure that they aren't seen as forbidden foods.

We had dessert sometimes and stuff like chips/candy on trips or sleepovers or at parties.

I think the most important thing is to model correct behavior. I saw how my parents ate and they were very healthy. There was no overeating or tons of processed foods and no one ever drank soda. My mom was never on a weight loss plan, she never talked about her weight or her body, and never made our weight a focus. We ate healthy so we could be healthy and everyone was thin and athletic. I would go to other people's houses that fed their kids mostly junk and I saw that as abnormal, so even if I had something like pop tarts(and even then I thought they were disgusting) and soda at someone's house, I would prefer and go back to my regular eating at home and the rest of the time.

Same way that I learned about responsible drinking- I grew up around my parents having drinks with dinner or after dinner drinks, they never got drunk, but they enjoyed them and I even got sips when I became a teenager and wanted to taste them. They taught me that alcohol isnt bad and it wasnt forbidden, so I never had a big desire to go out and drink in secret.

I remember we mostly got a big breakfast in the morning (eggs/some kind of meat/vegetable and tea), then I would skip lunch when I was older because I wasn't hungry, then a meal with fish/meat, a salad, some kind of cooked vegetable and something like a small portion of potatoes/buckwheat/pasta/bread.



:goodpost:
Great post. For children, the concentration should be on whole foods including meats, fruits, veggies and some carbs like sweat potatoes and brown rice. Their growing brains and body needs more variety and energy to build itself than us adults and there's no room for mistakes. I cringe when people give their children a vegan diet but also cringe when it's a kitogenic diet that has not been deemed medically necessary. There are adults who thrive on vegan diets and those who thrive on LC but children are not just mini-adults, they have a very different physiology.

pocahontas 04-19-2013 09:23 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by nolcjunk (Post 16382579)
I grew up on a lower carb diet- tons of vegetables, fruits, full fat dairy (yogurt, cottage cheese, cheeses, buttermilk), chicken/fish/steak/pork, eggs.

But we also had sugar and grains and beans. I wouldn't cut those things in a child's diet. These foods are not inherently bad, they become bad when a kid is fed cereal, white bread sandwiches, and fast food all in one day and they become overweight. Beans, some grains, and a little bit of sugar add variety to a diet and ensure that they aren't seen as forbidden foods.

We had dessert sometimes and stuff like chips/candy on trips or sleepovers or at parties.

I think the most important thing is to model correct behavior. I saw how my parents ate and they were very healthy. There was no overeating or tons of processed foods and no one ever drank soda. My mom was never on a weight loss plan, she never talked about her weight or her body, and never made our weight a focus. We ate healthy so we could be healthy and everyone was thin and athletic. I would go to other people's houses that fed their kids mostly junk and I saw that as abnormal, so even if I had something like pop tarts(and even then I thought they were disgusting) and soda at someone's house, I would prefer and go back to my regular eating at home and the rest of the time.

Same way that I learned about responsible drinking- I grew up around my parents having drinks with dinner or after dinner drinks, they never got drunk, but they enjoyed them and I even got sips when I became a teenager and wanted to taste them. They taught me that alcohol isnt bad and it wasnt forbidden, so I never had a big desire to go out and drink in secret.

I remember we mostly got a big breakfast in the morning (eggs/some kind of meat/vegetable and tea), then I would skip lunch when I was older because I wasn't hungry, then a meal with fish/meat, a salad, some kind of cooked vegetable and something like a small portion of potatoes/buckwheat/pasta/bread.

:goodpost:

This is how we have raised our 2 yr old. He would rather sit down and eat tomatoes and cucumbers or broccoli and pork chops over the junk that I see a lot of kids eating these days. We dont restrict anything, we just dont buy junk at our home. Most of our food is LC, healthy, fresh, organic. DH is not a LC'er so he has some add on's like crackers, rice, potato, etc. and I offer those to DS but he doesnt always eat them. As long as he is healthy, growing and thriving, I know I am doing my part. :heart:

nolcjunk 04-19-2013 09:53 AM

[QUOTE=pocahontas;16382737

This is how we have raised our 2 yr old. He would rather sit down and eat tomatoes and cucumbers or broccoli and pork chops over the junk that I see a lot of kids eating these days. We dont restrict anything, we just dont buy junk at our home. Most of our food is LC, healthy, fresh, organic. DH is not a LC'er so he has some add on's like crackers, rice, potato, etc. and I offer those to DS but he doesnt always eat them. As long as he is healthy, growing and thriving, I know I am doing my part. :heart:[/QUOTE]

That's model parenting.

I think restricting too much just leads to kids lashing out and over consuming foods that are considered bad at home.

Karerose 04-19-2013 02:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by nolcjunk (Post 16382801)
I think restricting too much just leads to kids lashing out and over consuming foods that are considered bad at home.

I would never have restricted my kid from eating food at others house, but I still wouldn't have it in my house. They would have to make do with treats like strawberries with cream.

I may have not known the value of low carb when my daughter was little, but I didn't know the value of drinking water over soda or too much juice. Luckily I happened to love water, so that was just naturally the number one drink in our house. My daughter did have some other stuff to drink, but her number one drink was water and since it was she grew up loving it and was surprised to find out some people didn't and that some of her friends seriously over consumed soda. For her soda was a treat when we went out and even then we still asked for water too.

nolcjunk 04-19-2013 02:51 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Karerose (Post 16383290)
I would never have restricted my kid from eating food at others house, but I still wouldn't have it in my house. They would have to make do with treats like strawberries with cream.

I may have not known the value of low carb when my daughter was little, but I didn't know the value of drinking water over soda or too much juice. Luckily I happened to love water, so that was just naturally the number one drink in our house. My daughter did have some other stuff to drink, but her number one drink was water and since it was she grew up loving it and was surprised to find out some people didn't and that some of her friends seriously over consumed soda. For her soda was a treat when we went out and even then we still asked for water too.

I agree with that. I am still baffled by people who drink soda all day long, starting at breakfast. What I said was in response to people who don't allow their kids to have anything that they consider bad, like sugar, grains, whatever, whether at home or outside.

pocahontas 04-19-2013 03:23 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by nolcjunk (Post 16382801)
That's model parenting.

I think restricting too much just leads to kids lashing out and over consuming foods that are considered bad at home.

ITA. DS gets treats at daycare and even home occasionally, we buy the odd box of Annie's Organic Fruit Snacks. He also gets carbs at daycare, his DCP is Chinese and they often have dim sum or rice or noodles. She also shops the local farmers market and provides tons of fresh veggies and fruits, fish and other proteins so I am fine with it. I know my DS, he is eating up the proteins, fruits & veggies and likely leaving most of the carbs anyhow. :laugh: That's how he rolls.

cocoeubanks 04-19-2013 03:38 PM

I'm glad someone brought this up. Both my husband and I had weight problems as kids, but he now has his at a manageable place, thanks to a lot of self discipline and not having to be the bearer of the child, haha! Anyway, we now have a seven month old daughter, and I'm constantly pondering what I can do to keep her from having the same struggles I've had my whole life. Right now, of course, she still gets the majority of her nutrition from formula, but the day is coming (much too) quickly when there will be a lot of other foods involved. Our doctor knows we've lived a moderate carb lifestyle since moving to Colorado and is perfectly fine with al three of us LC'ing, though he made an excellent point when it came to higher starch fruits and vegetables. To quote "You didn't get this way eating too many carrots, Court," and he's exactly right. While I know *I* need to avoid (and other things. Carrots are just the example) them to correct the problem I have, I don't think restricting my kid from them is going to help. Now not having those God forsaken goldfish that every child in American seems to survive on, THAT, I can do.

Mistizoom 04-19-2013 03:59 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cocoeubanks (Post 16383368)
I'm glad someone brought this up. Both my husband and I had weight problems as kids, but he now has his at a manageable place, thanks to a lot of self discipline and not having to be the bearer of the child, haha! Anyway, we now have a seven month old daughter, and I'm constantly pondering what I can do to keep her from having the same struggles I've had my whole life. Right now, of course, she still gets the majority of her nutrition from formula, but the day is coming (much too) quickly when there will be a lot of other foods involved. Our doctor knows we've lived a moderate carb lifestyle since moving to Colorado and is perfectly fine with al three of us LC'ing, though he made an excellent point when it came to higher starch fruits and vegetables. To quote "You didn't get this way eating too many carrots, Court," and he's exactly right. While I know *I* need to avoid (and other things. Carrots are just the example) them to correct the problem I have, I don't think restricting my kid from them is going to help. Now not having those God forsaken goldfish that every child in American seems to survive on, THAT, I can do.

I highly recommend any of Ellyn Satter's books, such as Child of Mine: Feeding with Love and Good Sense or Secrets of Feeding a Healthy Family. I really wish I had heard of her when DS was a baby. I didn't find her books until DS was 5 or 6 and even then her techniques worked very well for us for quite a while. If you are at all into paleo/whole foods/grain-free eating there are a couple of good books out there for kids (though older than your daughter probably) such as Eat Like a Dinosaur and Paleo Pals.

cocoeubanks 04-19-2013 04:15 PM

Thanks Misti! Even if she's too young for some of it now, it will be handy in the future. We're definitely grain-free, and if I can ever give up Splenda we'll be mostly processed food free, too. Even before we started LC'ing we were on that train.

DiamondDeb 04-19-2013 04:51 PM

LC is healthy eating.

The SAD - AKA "normal" eating - is unhealthy.

flappa1016 04-19-2013 08:02 PM

Tom Naughton, his wife and two children were recently guest hosts on Jimmy Moore's podcast, and the topic was feeding children a low carb diet. Even at the ages of 7 and 9, their children recognize and appreciate the diet that Tom and his wife feed them. I really enjoyed the podcast.

lilbeetle 04-19-2013 09:32 PM

Thank you for your input everyone.

I was sent a link to a blog by a mother who is raising her preschool kids on paleo + dairy and it seems to be something I can easily incorperate into the family menu and I would be very comfortable feeding a growing small person. So he can be paleo, DD and I will be LC and DH will just eat whatever is avaiable, or help himself :)

LiterateGriffin 04-20-2013 05:25 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ntombi (Post 16382039)
There is a lot of research on kids with certain medical conditions doing better on a ketogenic diet (it helps tremendously, and is healthy). But your three year old doesn't have to be in ketosis if you're uncomfortable with that. Feeding him a moderately low carb diet, with a few more servings of low-glycemic fruits and veggies than you guys get, works great too. Teaching him to focus on eating healthy servings of meats and non-starchy veggies, with small amounts of starches and fruits is a great lesson for anyone to learn.

For something like 80 years, they've been using ketogenic diets in young children to treat epilepsy.

It is proven safe.

One thing you MIGHT see is fewer behavior problems. A large number of "tantrums" are caused by plumetting blood sugar. When you take that away, you get to see your sweet child again. (At least we did!)

Girlieschmoo 04-20-2013 08:07 AM

I have had this same concern but knowing what we know now about grains and inflammation and blood sugar levels, etc...I feel great feeding my kids drastically-reduced carb meals. Also as important: keeping it clean. I try to make food with 5 (single) ingredients or less.

Two years into LC/HF WOE and I am still trying to get the train turned around from conventional (read: inaccurate) directives on food consumption.

Geekin' in Utah 04-20-2013 08:37 PM

Google Robert Lustig. He's a pediatric endocrinologist at UCSF. He isn't "low carb" per say, but his comments on the real poison (literally) that is fructose is eye-opening. That means fructose in juice and soda, high-fructose corn syrup in bread, and all the other places it shows up.

He has a YouTube video that is a little over an hour. It is time VERY well spent as he describes the metabolic path that causes fructose to do basically the same damage alcohol does to the organs.

So, while carbs may be OK in the form of glucose (eg the Traditional Japanese diet) and lactose if you can tolerate it, our food supply is so I undated with fructose that it is nearly impossible to get away from without going low carb.

nolcjunk 04-21-2013 03:59 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Geekin' in Utah (Post 16385183)

So, while carbs may be OK in the form of glucose (eg the Traditional Japanese diet) and lactose if you can tolerate it, our food supply is so I undated with fructose that it is nearly impossible to get away from without going low carb.

I don't think it's that hard if you focus on unprocessed foods and don't guzzle juice and instead have one orange or apple. There are plenty of breads that don't have HFCS, you just have to get more natural ones, not the ones that have been dyed brown but are basically wonderbread.

Geekin' in Utah 04-21-2013 07:42 AM

You are right, as long as your kids aren't in school. Once they are in school (and preschool counts) the crap adds up everywhere. The treats for birthdays, the snacks after recess, the "nutritionally balanced" lunch, the stuff they trade with their friends when they take their own lunch.

I can manage my 12 year old fairly well within my home, but I cringe daily knowing that my son is getting doses of crap that I've come to believe is a chronic poison at the levels eaten in our society. But I also know if I put my fist down hard, the rebel gene will come out and I'll do more damage than I fix.

Anyway, my overall point: low carb is fine for kids (it has been used to treat epilepsy for years). I agree with you that doing the best you can in your home is important, because everybody else in the world will do their worst. Start early, but don't be so strict that they have reason to rebel. Teach them that, at part of a sensible way of eating, a treat on a special occasion is fine (it is, if you aren't trained to be addicted to them and trying to lose the weight that addiction brought :), but every day isn't a special occasion, no matter what the food commercials say.

nolcjunk 04-21-2013 07:51 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Geekin' in Utah (Post 16385533)
You are right, as long as your kids aren't in school. Once they are in school (and preschool counts) the crap adds up everywhere. The treats for birthdays, the snacks after recess, the "nutritionally balanced" lunch, the stuff they trade with their friends when they take their own lunch.

I can manage my 12 year old fairly well within my home, but I cringe daily knowing that my son is getting doses of crap that I've come to believe is a chronic poison at the levels eaten in our society. But I also know if I put my fist down hard, the rebel gene will come out and I'll do more damage than I fix.

Anyway, my overall point: low carb is fine for kids (it has been used to treat epilepsy for years). I agree with you that doing the best you can in your home is important, because everybody else in the world will do their worst. Start early, but don't be so strict that they have reason to rebel. Teach them that, at part of a sensible way of eating, a treat on a special occasion is fine (it is, if you aren't trained to be addicted to them and trying to lose the weight that addiction brought :), but every day isn't a special occasion, no matter what the food commercials say.

I found that getting a big breakfast before school really helped especially when I was younger- I was too full for junk. And, you can always pack a lunch too. I remember most people actually bringing food because school lunch was horrendous- I mean the supposed pizza was a hunk of round dough with some ketchup-ish sauce and like 2 pepperoni slices. And, I think boys can be convinced to eat a higher protein packed lunch if you talk about muscles and strength and it helping them do better in sports.

suzanneyea 04-21-2013 08:07 AM

There is no way my ten year old would turn down pizza. I have explained low carb to him, I lead by example, but I will not force it on him. I hope one day he chooses low carb on his own. I would freak out if someone tried to control my food, so I will give him the same respect.

nolcjunk 04-21-2013 08:10 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by suzanneyea (Post 16385592)
There is no way my ten year old would turn down pizza. I have explained low carb to him, I lead by example, but I will not force it on him. I hope one day he chooses low carb on his own. I would freak out if someone tried to control my food, so I will give him the same respect.

:lol: I'm sure he would turn down the pizza that I described. The best part was that half of them would be only partially defrosted on the inside. I don't think anyone tried it more than once.

HP 04-21-2013 04:12 PM

Good evening everyone. :) When my 11 year old starts Summer (day) camp in June, I'd like to start going lower carb with him but kind of sneak it in on him. The camp doesn't provide lunch or snacks so I'm looking for ideas to pack lower carb lunches and snacks (and he'll have bottled water to drink since they'll be outside playing on the nice days). I'll give him a lower carb breakfasts and then for dinner try to stick to grilled proteins, one of the vegetables he likes (which unfortunately isn't a whole lot more than broccoli, some salad with ranch or green beans every now and then) and some strawberries and whole whipped cream or something similar. Does anyone else have any ideas? I don't want him to be hungry because he's a tall 11 year old (he already wears a men's size 9.5 shoe) but he is overweight. I've not been putting to much emphasis on losing weight just maintaining and growing taller which he's been doing but thought maybe a little low carb boost over the summer would help him especially since he'll be starting middle school next year. Thanks in advance for any suggestions! :)

Geekin' in Utah 04-21-2013 09:30 PM

With a solid breakfast, he won't need as much for lunch. He also doesn't have to be down at Atkins Induction levels of carbs, either, so you can look for low-carb bead or tortillas with sugar free pb&j and the like. Bratwurst is a regular favorite of my kids, as are the low-carb crackers Netrition sells with cream cheese or sliced cheese (pricier, but good to break things up. Microwaved pepperoni slices (they crisp up great) with mozzarella, cream cheese or green onion cheeseball is also well liked. A new one we've been doing is to take a slice of American cheese and cut it into 16 prices, then nuke them on parch,net paper until crisp (around 45 seconds) to get real "cheezits".

But if you start with a good protein and fat breakfast (bacon and eggs type thing), he likely won't be very hungry by lunch.

Mistizoom 04-22-2013 05:16 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by HP (Post 16386207)
Good evening everyone. :) When my 11 year old starts Summer (day) camp in June, I'd like to start going lower carb with him but kind of sneak it in on him. The camp doesn't provide lunch or snacks so I'm looking for ideas to pack lower carb lunches and snacks (and he'll have bottled water to drink since they'll be outside playing on the nice days). I'll give him a lower carb breakfasts and then for dinner try to stick to grilled proteins, one of the vegetables he likes (which unfortunately isn't a whole lot more than broccoli, some salad with ranch or green beans every now and then) and some strawberries and whole whipped cream or something similar. Does anyone else have any ideas? I don't want him to be hungry because he's a tall 11 year old (he already wears a men's size 9.5 shoe) but he is overweight. I've not been putting to much emphasis on losing weight just maintaining and growing taller which he's been doing but thought maybe a little low carb boost over the summer would help him especially since he'll be starting middle school next year. Thanks in advance for any suggestions! :)

I'm in the same situation, I will need to send our 10 year old with lunch every day this summer. The camp provides two snacks a day so we need to discuss that with the camp instructor. He really does not need a morning snack and I want to make sure the afternoon snack is healthy (I can tell you from past experience that what his camp provides usually isn't). I can come back with ideas later, though maybe we should start a thread in the Children's health forum on ideas for healthy low carb lunches for kids?


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