5 reasons for the lack of appetite in children

You can differently perceive the fact of malnutrition of the child food on the plate. Modern parents are trying to adequately respond to this situation, but grandmothers have a different opinion. It is believed that the child is hungry, he lacks nutrients, the child should eat everything. There are no established norms of nutrition, they give recommendations. Separate baby - a separate metabolic period, respectively, a different need for incoming food.

Children toddlers (1-2 years): meals should be received per day 4 times: have breakfast, lunch, afternoon snack and dinner. Older children (3-7 years): nutrition should provide vitamins and nutrients to prepare the body for sharply increasing mental and physical stress. The calories contained in the food must be sufficient to ensure all processes. In 3 years, 1540 kcal is enough, and in 7 years, the figure increases to 2350 kcal.

To assume that a child has a bad appetite, and that he is undernourished, on the basis of his weight, is wrong. The relationship of two factors is not. If the baby is gaining normal weight, he has a harmonious development, there is active communication and games, he regularly goes to the toilet - there is enough nutrition, there is no need to increase the appetite.

Loss of appetite can occur for various reasons - not associated with diseases or indicating a violation of the function of the internal organs of the baby.

Disruption of appetite can lead to complications:

  • By reducing the feeling of hunger, body weight is reduced to a critical point - cachexia. With increased hunger, obesity develops.
  • Inadequate intake of nutrients leads to cracks in the skin. Excessive food intake causes the appearance of scars in places of stretching of the skin during obesity.
  • The function of the body is reduced.
  • Decreased appetite leads to dysfunction of the internal organs due to the lack of adequate nutrition.
  • The processes of growth and development of the child are impaired, mental activity decreases, memory deteriorates.
  • Uncomfortable psychological nature, sleep disturbance.

Mouth pain

The baby refuses to eat and is naughty because of painful sensations in the mouth. Stomatitis causes the appearance of small ulcers on the mucous membrane of the mouth, which prevent normal chewing of food. A bad tooth or inflamed gums will interfere with the normal processing of food. Sore throat when swallowing will lead to refusal to eat.

Causes of loss of appetite in children

Medical workers often face complaints from parents about the deterioration of the nutrition of their child. There are many different provocative reasons. The most popular is an unpleasant disease. Most often, small children suffer from loss of appetite. They all love sweets, and therefore in their body can get worms. Such a disease is not dangerous, it is quickly treated and the appetite is restored. Let's take a closer look at the main causes of loss of appetite:

    “All I want is what I eat!” First of all, you need to find out the reason. After all, often the baby refuses to eat porridge, and wants candy or fruit. He wants, there are those products that he likes, and come to taste. The child goes through food and demands that he be given what he wants. You should not go on about the baby, poke him around. Raise the baby properly, if he refuses to have breakfast, then let him wait for dinner. Teach him to diet, so that he understands that for the sake of him nothing else will not cook. Time will pass and he will want to eat. Try to eat with the whole family to set an example for the baby. So he will develop food habits.

Quick snack. The reason for reducing appetite may be associated with occasional snacks between meals. For example, the student did not have time or did not want to have breakfast, and in a couple of hours he would like to chew something. Go buy a muffin or eat a sandwich cooked by mom. Very often, children, coming home after lessons, are too lazy to warm up food. It's easier for them to make a sandwich and eat it quickly. To appetite was normal, you need to avoid small snacks.

Personal development. Taste needs for each child and their different. After all, the first kid jumps, jumps, plays all day. And the second one can easily watch cartoons, leaf through a book, play with a toy. Therefore, their needs are directly dependent on physical activity, movement, growth, produced immunity. We can observe this, for example, when the kid ran, played outside and after a walk he eats well. Each baby has an individual digestive system, a different metabolism. Therefore, their needs for food differ significantly. Signs of normal nutrition are fatness, growth intensity, optimal body formation, proper functioning of the internal organs and all systems. From an early age, children begin to grow, the growth of their muscles accelerates. Therefore, some have a thin physique, and others are well-fed. They have different tendencies to fat loss, the shape of the chest, the length of the limbs, is different in height and body weight.

Exercise stress. Kids do not sit on the spot, they run, jump, jump, play. Energy reserves go, and there is a need to replenish them. Then they have an appetite, and they want to eat. Very rarely do children who play sports complain of lack of appetite. Since they have a large level of physical activity. Good kids eat in teams. For example, in the kindergarten, there they all sit down at tables, eat together. When a child does not want to eat something, he understands that his comrade can do it instead. This has a very positive effect on the child’s appetite, and he eats it with pleasure. Parents should not forget that the child needs to engage in some kind of sport (karate, football, swimming). After all, learning a foreign language, playing the violin is not a sporting activity. At the same time energy does not disappear, but accumulates, it does not go anywhere. Because of this, appetite may disappear, and those extra pounds accumulate. Therefore, offer your child to go to a class that he likes. At the weekend, leave with your child to the country, walk more, ride a bike, walk well in the forest.

  • Power through force. Such food does not cause an appetite, but only makes it forced to eat. Some mommies do that, forcibly trying to feed the baby. The consequences of this diet can be a failure of the digestive tract, the development of other diseases.

  • Screaming while nursing a baby is generally not recommended. Because it can lead to vomiting, intestinal spasms, loss of digestive juice. Involuntary disease can occur - habitual vomiting syndrome.

    Due to the fact that the child eats, he grows, develops, receives energy, maintains a good state of health. Appetite decreases due to a symptom of the disease that needs to be diagnosed in time.

    What to do to improve the appetite?

    First of all, the child's appetite depends on the mother. She should develop and follow the diet. If the baby gets used to eating at the same time, it contributes to the optimal functioning of the gastrointestinal tract.

    When a baby cries, it is naughty, do not feed it. Wait, calm the child, distract for a while. After your capriciousness calmed down, you can start feeding.

    In order for the baby to eat with pleasure, use bright dishes. This may be a plate with your favorite hero from the cartoon. In this way, your baby’s appetite may also increase.

    What determines children's appetite?

    Parents are alarmed by the uncertainty of the reason for a decrease in appetite. When a child is sick, it is clear that he does not really want to eat. But when there are no signs of illness and no appetite, then this state of the baby scares the mother. So, loss of appetite has a special physiological, normal basis:

      Plays an important role hormone production. From a young age, thyroid growth hormone is produced in the body in significant amounts. Thus, the child quickly matures, increases appetite. Remember that growth also depends on hereditary genes. Also in the winter period, growth stops, and in the summer it resumes again.

    Energy costs. When a boy is mobile, active, then his energy is quickly consumed. To restore it, you need to eat. In the process of feeding the children's body receives nutrients, trace elements for the smooth functioning of the internal organs, vitamins for growth.

  • Personal features. Each baby has a peculiar individual metabolism. He is responsible for the assimilation of food, and for how long it will be enough for the body. Therefore, it affects the formation of the constitution and muscles of your child.
  • Sources of appetite loss

    • with oral disease (thrush, stomatitis),
    • when the first teeth appear, the baby can stop feeding,
    • in the fight against infectious disease,
    • constipation blocks the process of nutrition,
    • snacks interrupt the main meals,
    • because of stress, punishment, screaming at the child,
    • watching cartoons, playing on the gadget.

    The desire not to eat may arise from fatigue, the use of new products, overstrain. Because this problem can not be left unattended. To be sure, go check with your doctor and find out the reason. Treat your child with understanding, teach to eat, what you have prepared for the whole family, do not follow the whims on the principle “I want to eat only that”.

    What to do when refusing food?

    The most important thing is to find out the reason for not eating. There are some rules that will help you deal with this situation:

      Do not feed the child by force. From this, the baby develops a negative attitude towards dishes, and he will resist.

    Observe the daily regimen. At a certain time, the child must eat, so he will produce pancreatic juice, which speeds up digestion.

    Before eating, do not give fruits, sweets. They do not satisfy the feeling of hunger, but only kill the appetite.

    The child does not need to be customized during meals. In a calm state, he is better fed up.

    Do not force to eat a large portion. It is better to eat in small doses, but regularly and often.

    Ask for help from a child to prepare a dish, arrange appliances, plates, decorate a salad or just mix it.

  • At the table, do not shout, do not find out the relationship with family members.

  • Arrange a lunch in a relaxed atmosphere, surprise your household with a delicious dish.

    What products are needed for the baby?

    Be patient and give your child the choice of foods he wants to eat. According to research, it has been proven that children choose products that they lack. They are able to independently express the need for certain useful enzymes. Require the specified product.

    Therefore, it is necessary to monitor the performance of the body and growth, physical development of the infant. In order not to miss everything necessary in the process of child development, regularly visit the pediatrician.

    Little kids need to follow the food stereotype. It is worth remembering about the group of products that are very important to the baby, in order to provide the physiological needs:

    • citrus vegetables,
    • dairy products (cheese, milk, sour cream, yogurt),
    • cereal of different grains,
    • meat, fish, eggs.

    Food is not always a source of appetite deterioration. It can provoke children's stress. Perhaps the child had a row with a peer and is in a depressed state. Regime change can also reduce nutritional needs, for example, if you eat at different times.

    Eat bad and few children who are few on the street. Therefore, regularly walk with the baby in the fresh air. But remember, food should be not only healthy, but also tasty.

    Doctor Komarovsky in this video tells how to increase the child's appetite:

    Causes of poor appetite in children

    The first thing to do when a child eats poorly is to figure out the cause of this behavior. Causes of poor appetite can be:

    • disease (from mild ailment to serious diseases of various organs),
    • bad mood, negative emotions,
    • eating sweets in the breaks between breakfast, lunch and dinner,
    • incorrect approach to the feeding process by the parents (irregular or excessive feeding).

    Some children refuse to eat if there is no additional entertainment (cartoons, toys, grandmother’s tales), rewards (parents promise the child to buy the toy they want if he eats all the porridge). The habit is developed quickly, but it is not easy to wean from it.

    How to improve the appetite of the baby under the age of 1 year

    The infant's appetite depends on a number of factors:

    1. Anatomical features and health.
    2. The composition and taste of milk, which largely determines the nutrition of the mother.
    3. Diet and sleep baby.
    4. Psychological condition of the mother.

    Equally important is the observance by the woman of the rules of hygiene, as the unpleasant smell, cosmetic fragrances can affect the baby’s appetite.

    It is necessary to start teaching the child to solid food in time. If a child after 6 months eats only breast milk, then later it is much more difficult to accustom him to regular food.

    Baby's appetite improves after bathing. Before feeding it is necessary to change it into spacious clothes that provide normal thermoregulation.

    What to do if children have no appetite

    For a growing body, you need good nutrition, which includes proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins. Therefore, meat, eggs, dairy products, various cereals, fruits, vegetables should be present in the children's diet. This is the only way to satisfy the body’s need for essential macronutrients:

    • calcium (part of the bone tissue is necessary for the growth of healthy teeth),
    • phosphorus (if it is deficient, abnormal bone growth occurs),
    • magnesium (affects heart activity, muscle development).

    With food, iron, zinc, iodine and other trace elements that make up the blood flow to the body, ensuring the normal development of all organs, enter the body. The lack of these substances leads to delayed development. This is another reason for experiencing when a child eats poorly. What to do in this situation will be prompted by a pediatrician who will most likely prescribe special vitamin complexes to compensate for the lack of elements.

    Decreased appetite due to disease

    One of the first symptoms of a child’s illness is a decrease in appetite. It is not necessary to insist on an indispensable meal, if it feels bad, such signs as lethargy, temperature increase appear. In this state it is much more important for the child to drink more. At the same time he will sweat, due to which the temperature drops. In addition, toxins, which are formed in the body during inflammatory processes, are released later.

    Digestion requires energy. A weakened body cannot cope with this function. Food during this period should be light: fruit, milk soup, mashed potatoes, boiled fish, chicken meat. And it is better to offer the child to eat those foods that he loves.

    Anorexia in children

    Anorexia is a condition in which the body cannot eat. In adolescents, it may occur as a result of the desire for weight loss.

    Pediatric infant anorexia is manifested by regurgitation during eating, aversion to ordinary food.Sometimes there is a predilection for sour citrus (lemon, grapefruit). At the same time, the child does not eat well, is capricious, throws dishes from the table, expresses dissatisfaction with the feeding process itself. Parents are often at a loss: what to do to rectify the situation.

    If a child eats badly, then, following certain rules, you can gradually accustom him to a normal diet:

    • if necessary, the interval between meals increases, so that the baby gets hungry,
    • food should be given in small portions, put it in a small plate, adding, if the child expresses a desire,
    • it is not necessary to ensure that the child eats everything that was placed on the plate, or that which is unpleasant to him,
    • it is not recommended to sit at the table during feeding for more than half an hour, then it is better to remove the food from the table,
    • In no case should you scold the child if he vomited during the meal,
    • feeding should take place in a calm and friendly environment
    • if necessary, you need to change the dishes, combine products, causing interest in them,
    • You should not give buns, sweet juice and sweets between the main meal.

    Recommendation: Do not eat when a child has a cake, if he is given oatmeal, and put dessert on the table when the child is fed with soup.

    Do I need to feed the child by force

    Often it seems to parents that their son is lagging behind his peer neighbor in growth due to the fact that he eats less. However, the point is not the quantity of food, but the individuality of the physiological processes. All people assimilation of food and the implementation of metabolism in the body occur in different ways. If the child has no signs of illness, then you should not worry about his appetite. The body lacks nutrients. And growth can be affected by heredity. Some children begin to grow rapidly during puberty, catching up and distilling peers.

    Note: If, in the absence of hereditary factors, a child differs significantly in height from his peers, the doctor often sends him for an examination to an endocrinologist, since it can be caused by hormonal disorders.

    Appetite is directly related to the work of the intestine. Therefore, parents should pay serious attention to the frequency of bowel movements of the child. If the baby suffers from constipation, then he may experience vomiting at the next meal. This is a natural defense reaction of the body. If at the same time insist on eating, then children develop a pathological reaction, vomiting will appear at the sight of any food, anorexia will develop.

    Feeding through force, rudeness, threats can cause irreparable harm to the health of the child, traumatize the psyche. The consequences of such feeding are heart disease, stomach diseases, including cancerous tumors.

    What to do to improve appetite

    Parents often cannot find the answer: what to do if children do not eat well. In order for the feeding process to proceed normally, it is necessary not only to diversify the dishes and pay more attention to the table setting, but also to make the child feel calm, not afraid of threats, know that they will not persuade him and force him to eat.

    A child’s appetite usually improves if he is fed with other children.

    If the appetite is bad, it is more important to eat a second, more nutritious dish, without filling the stomach with the first, liquid one.

    The food should include meals that stimulate the appetite. Children can be given not very salty herring, pickles and tomatoes, cabbage and a variety of salads. It is necessary to feed the child with foods that contain a lot of fiber (cereals, vegetables, fruits) in order for the intestines to work properly.

    Of great importance to increase appetite is the duration of walks in the fresh air, outdoor games, sports, tempering procedures. In some cases, you may need to take special drugs to improve the production of gastric juice, products containing bifidobacteria.

    What is the appetite and the reasons for its violation

    Man instinctively chooses his own food, which requires his body. At the core of appetite is a feeling of hunger, which occurs in the hypothalamus.

    It should be understood that small children (6 months and a little older) do not eat out of hunger. They may well be fed up with breast milk, but they still begin to ask for food from my mother's plate.

    This is an interest in food. The most powerful incentive for a healthy appetite. If food interest is disturbed, problems with appetite occur.

    Why does a child eat badly

    Causes of poor appetite are medical and pedagogical.

    In the first case, kids refuse to eat if they have health problems. This may be fever, pain in the joints and stomach and during teething (read the article on the topic: Teething in children >>>).

    Pedagogical reasons include:

    • snacks between feedings, especially sweets,
    • excessive and irregular feeding,
    • if they are accustomed to cartoons while eating, but they are not included,
    • there is no incentive for food
    • the child is not in the open air and moves a little,
    • bad mood.

    Attention! If you promise to buy a new toy for good food or turn on a cartoon, then you make a big mistake. The habit is developed quickly, but it will not be easy to get rid of it.

    In addition, children can eat poorly during the heat, with the late introduction of complementary foods, because it is difficult for them to chew. Also, babies do not want to eat when they are given too large portions and monotonous food.

    There may be psychological reasons:

    1. parents feed the child by force
    2. if not near mom,
    3. stress in the period of adaptation to the children's institution (an important article on the topic: Adaptation to kindergarten >>>),
    4. family conflicts or the appearance of another child.

    Disruption of appetite may be temporary and permanent.

    • Short-term violation may be associated with the quality of food, with the organization of food, lack of drinking and the monotony of dishes,
    • Long-term appetite can be disturbed due to intoxication of the body and gastrointestinal tract disease, with problems with the nervous system.

    What causes a poor appetite?

    If young children are malnourished, it can lead to problems in mental and physical development. Since the baby does not get all the nutrients he needs from the products, he may lag behind in growth and development.

    When a schoolboy is undernourished, he has a bad time at school. Serious refusal to eat leads to anorexia.

    Important! The most vulnerable are children under five. They have anemia from poor nutrition and nutritional deficiencies, and they often get sick.

    Also damage to health can cause a monotonous and unbalanced diet.

    If a baby has been eating poorly for a long time, then it can be clearly stated that he is undernourished. At the same time, all the necessary nutrients that he needs for development and growth do not enter the children's organism.

    Malnutrition gradually leads to a decrease in immunity and low body mass, the baby often gets sick and gets tired quickly, does not study well and develops poorly. Poor nutrition can lead to serious health consequences for your baby.

    Attention! Many parents give the baby any food, even harmful, believing that the main thing: to fill the volume of food. However, this is a blunder, because such a tactic leads to the fact that the baby quickly gains weight, which only aggravates his health.

    Causes of poor appetite for age

    1. In infants, the appetite decreases with the incorrect introduction of complementary foods,

    If you feed a baby while feeding, force-feed and distract his attention while eating cartoons and games, you will get an appetite problem in time.

    How to enter the supplements correctly, so that the child eats everything and with appetite, look in the ABC's online feeding seminar: a safe introduction of complementary feeding to the infant >>>

    1. Children older than a year and children of preschool age do not eat well, if the diet is violated, they interrupt their appetite with sweets, in the interval between main meals,

    At any age, reduced appetite with:

    • acute and chronic diseases
    • low hemoglobin and endocrine diseases,
    • cardiovascular pathology and liver problems,
    • poisoning
    • an excess of vitamin D,
    • while taking medications.

    How to improve the appetite

    If a child eats badly, how to raise his appetite? First, you need to diversify the menu, pay attention to serving, and make the baby not afraid that he will be forced to eat.

    1. Appetite usually improves if the child eats with all family members. You can feed him with other children or at the table,
    2. In this situation, it is more important to eat a more nutritious dish,
    3. Cooking products are necessary those that stimulate the appetite,
    4. For the normal functioning of the intestine, it is important to give porridges, fruits and vegetables,
    5. For appetite, the baby should be outdoors, play outdoor games, play sports and undergo hardening procedures,
    6. To increase the appetite of the baby will help joint cooking.

    In no case do not scold the kid at the table and do not force him to eat, it only discourages the desire to eat.

    You can offer older children to make a "false choice", offering him pasta or mashed potatoes, vegetables or porridge.

    When you feed your baby, follow some rules:

    • try to eat the whole family,
    • make sure the baby does not interrupt his appetite,
    • do not allow your child to eat in front of the TV,
    • Plan your baby's day regimen so that he feeds his appetite.

    A problem with appetite during a latent chronic illness is eliminated by a pediatrician after a full examination.

    Some tips for mom

    All children are individual, so the approach to eliminate the causes of poor appetite is different for everyone.

    However, there are several secrets that may be useful to you:

    1. Make sure the child does not snack between meals,
    2. Do not allow knocking with a spoon and playing with food,
    3. Try to focus the attention of the baby on a meal,
    4. If the baby does not eat any foods, then enter them little by little into the main course, before turning them into mashed potatoes,
    5. Do not feed by force
    6. Control how a small person chews and swallows food, do not put a spoon in his mouth until he has time to open it for the next portion of dinner.

    For more details on each of these points, as well as other, the most important principles of healthy eating, which help to return the child’s appetite and teach neat behavior at the table, see the online course.

    Write in the comments your questions on child nutrition.

    What nutritional or feeding difficulties have you encountered? What worries you most?

    Lyudmila Sharova, nutrition consultant, child psychologist.

    It's difficult to breathe

    A cold disease in children is often accompanied by the formation of snot. The child breathes through the mouth, eating is problematic. Every adult faced a clogged nose and knows that in such a situation, the appetite disappears completely.

    Food Intolerance

    In this situation, we are not talking about allergic reactions of the child’s body, but rather, about the infant’s breast period (0-6 months). Entering new foods into the diet is always a load on the digestive organs. Intolerance to one of the introduced products can lead to failure to eat.

    Older children will lose their appetite when they see jelly, semolina, etc. Attempting to feed a child with unpleasant food leads to gagging reflexes and whims.

    General physical discomfort

    Colds and infectious diseases in an adult cause loss of appetite, in a child even more so. Virus and fever, baby does not eat - it is important for the body to fight infection, and not to digest food. An attempt to feed a sick child will lead to a deterioration of his physical and moral condition.

    After the disease, the child's body is weakened, reduced appetite - the phenomenon is normal.

    Causes related to caprice

    The above reasons are easily diagnosed and resolved. But the child is healthy, there is no pain, but he eats badly or demands tasty. This is - whims.

    Consider the advice of Dr. Komarovsky on appetite disorder in the younger generation.

    Eat what i want

    Trouble in bringing up. The child demanded candy instead of tasteless porridge and his desire was satisfied, then the situation repeats. This is called selective appetite; it has nothing to do with a healthy call.

    To restore the correct behavior of the baby enough to adhere to strict rules of eating. He does not want to eat porridge, it means that breakfast is over, and the kid must wait for dinner, he has not eaten soup for lunch - the next meal will be at dinner. Important: there is no snacking between meals, avoid talking about food.

    If adults believe that in this mode, the children's organism will remain hungry, they are mistaken. The human body is designed so that it can endure a long hunger strike. The child during this time will form nutritional skills.

    Unreasonable reduction of hunger is associated with snacks between main meals. The kid did not eat lunch, after an hour he gets a sandwich, he ran around and found a sweet drink. The lunch hour comes, the appetite is gone.

    Returning home, in the absence of parents, the student eats a large piece of sausage, and the proposed bowl of soup remains intact. Parents advice: do not give children the opportunity to snack.

    In adolescents, the frequency of snacking increases many times. Unfulfilled understanding of food in adulthood is difficult to fix.

    Individual development

    The needs of an individual baby are individual. One runs, jumps, restless - while thin, no matter how much he ate. The other is quiet, calm, moves little, while well-fed and eats little. The measure of the compliance of the nutritional needs of the child is not the amount of food consumed, but the quality and level of development of his growth, mental qualities.

    In this case, the advice of Dr. Komarovsky is useful: if a child eats little, but at the same time is mobile, active and develops correctly, the only ones in need of treatment are the parents of the baby.

    The younger generation involved in sports and active physical activity does not complain of a lack of appetite. The children's body is a solid ball of energy, designed to be spent. Spending, you need to replenish energy reserves and there is an increase in the desire to eat.

    Food through force

    Forcing an adult to eat something unloved or superfluous will lead to failure and resistance. So is the child: having been fed up with half a serving, the other one eats through force. Parents, trying to feed the child, go to tricks, persuasion.

    Food that enters the body not at will is poorly digestible and undergoes incomplete absorption. At the same time, the functioning of the digestive organs is disturbed, diseases develop.

    Treatment methods

    Parents often wonder what to do to increase the appetite of children. The situation associated with the whim of a child or improper upbringing by adults is decided at the level of pedagogy and psychology. And the impact is exposed to the baby and parents.

    More serious is the issue of loss of appetite due to illness.

    Appetite is different

    Without food, life is impossible, but appetite does not always come with eating. Natural appetite occurs when food is required by the body to replenish energy reserves in order to survive.A selective accompanies the modern man much more often. The child wants a cookie, because he likes it, and does not want porridge, because cookies are better.

    The selective appetite reflects the real picture of the needs of only an infant; at 8-9 months, he intuitively feels that he needs calcium, and refuses to eat soup.Not because the soup is tasteless, but because milk is healthier. At the age of 1 year, 2 years, children for the same reason prefer dairy products.

    If a one-year-old child does not eat meat in principle, this does not mean that in 3-4 years he will not start to eat him with pleasure. Just for the 12-month crumbs are more important vegetables and fruits, cottage cheese and milk. And he understands this on an intuitive level.

    Closer to 3 years, the problem of electoral appetite, according to Komarovsky, is far-fetched - if the child does not eat vegetable puree and requires only chocolate and sausage, this is the usual pedagogical error of mom and dad, and no medical reasons for this behavior should be sought.

    Drug treatment

    Any medications must be taken as prescribed and under the supervision of a physician, in particular a pediatrician. Children's body reacts differently to drugs.

    More often, in order to increase the appetite, doctors advise homeopathic complexes with magnesium salts and calcium salts.

    Among the drugs that work to increase the desire to eat, offer:

    • Elkar is a vitamin that normalizes the work of the stomach, is involved in the digestion of food and metabolism.
    • Lysine is an amino acid necessary for growth, production of homo, antibodies and other enzymes.
    • Glycine is an amino acid that reduces tension, aggressiveness, improves attentiveness, reduces the desire to eat sweets.

    The pharmacological industry produces vitamins to increase appetite in children. The pediatrician prescribes a medicine or a mixture of medicines for the best effect of treatment, based on the characteristics of the child’s body.

    If there is no desire to give the child chemicals, it is permissible to replace the berries: lingonberries, strawberries, raspberries, etc. Food must be fresh and ripe.

    In infants, medications do not increase appetite. The infant's body is able to determine the amount of nutrients needed. Baby's refusal to eat is caused by inappropriate products in breast milk. Having found out which ingredient is not suitable, mother should eliminate it from the diet and replace it with another.

    The first lure also carries the risk of reducing appetite. Perhaps the wrong menu. Try giving another ingredient and see the reaction. Then continue to add new food and switch to full power.

    Natural remedies

    Nature comes to the aid of parents in the struggle to increase the appetite of their children. Activated receptors of the body, responsible for the feeling of hunger with a cherry, a little raspberry, carrot, a piece of apple - half an hour before the main meal.

    Possess stimulating properties:

    • Chokeberry - rich in vitamins and trace elements, sugar and organic acids. Helps the work of the entire gastrointestinal tract, removes toxins from the body and improves immunity.
    • Strawberries are the main source of minerals for children. Helps to cope with colds, improves digestion, increases appetite.
    • Black currant, kiwi, citrus, etc.


    To prevent loss of appetite, preventive measures are taken. Frequent walks will help to increase the appetite in children (fresh air helps “nagging” feelings of hunger), as well as physical exertion, the main thing is to choose the right set of exercises.

    Preventive actions in case of already impaired functioning of the digestive organs or dysfunction of other organs that affected the appetite. The disease requires full and adequate treatment. Ways to combat the difficulties encountered are appointed by the pediatrician after the examination and identification of the source of dysfunction.


    There are such types of impaired appetite in a child:

    • complete loss of appetite
    • significant deterioration
    • change in taste.

    You should also pay attention to the age norm of daily calories:

    • from 3 to 5 years - 1500,
    • from 5 to 7 years - 1800,
    • from 8 to 12 - 2000,
    • in adolescence from 12 to 16 years - 2400.

    However, it is necessary to understand that the body of each child is individual, therefore, to establish a pathological calorie deficit and the cause of poor appetite in a child, if any, can only be a qualified doctor.


    If a newborn's poor appetite is due to a pathological process in the body, then the presence of such a clinical picture is possible:

    • the child becomes capricious, constantly crying,
    • regurgitation, vomiting,
    • the consistency and frequency of the stool changes,
    • abdominal distention, frequent constipation,
    • increased body temperature
    • the stomach becomes hard and tense
    • the presence of white bloom in the language
    • categorical refusal to eat.

    If the deterioration of appetite is caused by a disease of the oral cavity, then sores, white patches on the oral mucosa may be present.

    Lack of appetite in a child may be due to gastroenterological disease, which will be characterized by the following clinical picture:

    • a complete rejection of food, even from your favorite dishes,
    • weakness, lethargy, apathy,
    • abdominal pain, location and nature will depend on the underlying cause,
    • nausea, which may be accompanied by repeated vomiting. In vomit may be present bile, blood,
    • violation of the frequency and consistency of the stool - with food poisoning there will be attacks of diarrhea,
    • low-grade body temperature, in some cases high,
    • dizziness,
    • high blood pressure
    • pallor of the skin,
    • dry mouth or, on the contrary, increased salivation,
    • bad taste in the mouth
    • heartburn, increased flatulence,
    • bloating.

    Due to the fact that the child is far from always able to explain what and where he has a pain, at the very first manifestations of the clinical picture one should consult a doctor and not try to eliminate the symptoms on his own.

    If the child has lost his appetite, it can be a manifestation of parasitic damage to the body, which is characterized by the following clinical picture:

    • a sharp weight loss, even if the appetite deteriorated slightly,
    • nausea, which is almost always accompanied by vomiting, especially after eating,
    • prolonged constipation alternated with bouts of diarrhea,
    • pain in the abdomen, which can give to the right or left hypochondrium,
    • signs of beriberi,
    • weakness and frequent dizziness,
    • sleep cycle disturbance - daytime sleepiness and sleeplessness at night,
    • a child may complain of itching in the anus,
    • capriciousness, apathy.

    Often the reason that a child eats badly is a disturbed metabolism. In this case, the following signs of the clinical picture may be present:

    • overweight, despite the small amount of food consumed,
    • violation of the frequency of the act of defecation - refers to those cases where a child goes to the toilet less than once every 1-2 days,
    • brittle hair and nails, dry skin,
    • swelling of the feet,
    • destruction of tooth enamel, frequent diseases of the oral cavity.

    To establish the cause of the disturbed metabolism can only be a doctor, after the necessary diagnostic procedures. Therefore, to self-medicate or try to force feed the child should not be.

    If the cause of lost appetite in a child of 2-3 years is an unfavorable psychological situation, then additional symptoms are usually absent, and the main clinical manifestation will be temporary. As the child's psychological state improves, his appetite will also improve.

    It should be understood that only a doctor, by carrying out the necessary examinations, can determine the exact cause of a child’s poor appetite. Trying to force the child to eat the usual portion should not be, as this can only exacerbate the situation and lead to a complete rejection of food.


    With such a clinical manifestation should first contact the pediatrician. You may also need to consult with the following narrowly qualified specialists:

    • gastroenterologist,
    • infectious diseases
    • endocrinologist,
    • neurologist,
    • child psychologist.

    To clarify the underlying cause can be assigned such laboratory and instrumental methods of examination:

    • general and biochemical blood test,
    • urinalysis and feces,
    • helminth feces analysis,
    • Ultrasound of the abdominal organs,
    • endoscopic studies of the gastrointestinal tract.

    The diagnostic program will depend entirely on the current symptoms and the history collected during the initial examination.

    How to raise the appetite of the child, and what caused his deterioration or complete absence, the doctor can say for sure only after the examination. If the cause of this symptom is a gastroenterological disease, then a course of drug therapy and a special diet are prescribed.

    Drug treatment may include taking such drugs:

    • antibiotics
    • antispasmodics,
    • probiotics
    • sorbents
    • antiparasitic,
    • to improve the motility of the stomach,
    • antidiarrheal,
    • vitamin and mineral complexes,
    • enzymes of gastric juice.

    A minimum of drugs are attributed to a newborn child.

    Special attention should be paid to the nutrition of the child, which should be based on the following recommendations:

    • the exclusion of snacks junk food, food is not on mode,
    • fast food, chips, sugary soft drinks and similar foods should be excluded from the child’s diet,
    • eating sweets should be in limited quantities and only after the main meal,
    • the child should be accustomed to the timely use of food,
    • enough vitamins and minerals in the diet,
    • exception of fat and fried,
    • in the daily diet must be present first courses,
    • the gradual introduction of new foods (for a child in 2–3 years).

    You should also pay attention to the general recommendations for feeding a baby:

    • while eating a child should not be distracting something - feeding in front of the TV, during the game is not strongly recommended,
    • To attract attention, you can use special children's dishes, interesting food design,
    • in the unloved dishes, if they can not be abandoned, you should add the components that the baby eats with pleasure,
    • it is impossible to overfeed a child - this can lead to the fact that in older adults he will always overeat, which entails serious problems.

    You can also use traditional medicine to increase your appetite, but only after consulting with your doctor. To increase the appetite, you can use the following recipes:

    • fruits of anise or raspberry should be poured boiling water and leave to infuse. It is necessary to give such broth in small amounts to food,
    • Parsley seeds need to be poured with cold water, boiled, let it infuse and cool. Give a child in small quantities 20-30 minutes before meals,
    • decoction of dried flowers of cornflower
    • decoction of dandelion root.

    The duration of the reception of such funds, as well as their dosage should be checked with the doctor. It is strongly not recommended to use such remedies without permission as some of the components of the baby may be allergic.

    In general, treatment should be comprehensive, often requires counseling classes from a child psychologist. The effectiveness of therapy will depend not only on the attending physician, but also on the parents themselves.

    What to do with snacks, protruding ribs and overweight

    A child’s poor appetite in the summer is the exception rather than the rule, because movement and fresh air do their job. However, in the heat of the children can really eat less than usual. Is it important to monitor the amount of food eaten, says a pediatrician with 40 years of experience Yuri Ivanovich Staroverov.

    The first reason: I eat what I want

    In the morning in the clinic there is a phone call. An alarming female voice reports: “My boy refuses to eat. And this is not the first time. What to do?". To begin with, it is always a good idea to find out what the lack of appetite is. Often it turns out that the child refuses some products, but willingly eats others. For example, defiantly spits out porridge and requires sweet fruit. If they meet him, the next time the situation repeats. It's obvious that problem of selective appetite has no direct relation to appetite per se. Pedagogical problem: a usurper and an egoist are growing in the family.

    And what is to do? It is important that the child in the family feel equal among equals, and not a darling of fate and the center of civilization. He does not want to eat porridge - breakfast is over, lunch is in 4 hours. I did not eat soup at dinner - wait until dinner. At the same time, it is very important that in the intervals between meals food does not come in the eyes of the child, so that he does not have the opportunity to have a bite on his own and that there is no talk about food in his presence.

    Many people object: "Why, he won't eat like that for a whole day." Nothing wrong. Nature has created man in such a way that he can do without food (but not without drinking) for several days, quite painlessly. Well, business, as a rule, does not reach this, provided, of course, that mom and grandmother have enough patience. But not enough, well, this is your child.

    The formation of a child's nutritional skills largely depends on the example of adults. It is difficult to demand a thoughtful absorption of food from a baby if dad usually snacks on sandwiches on the go and the family never gathers at the dinner table.

    Reason Two: Snacks

    Another common variant of falsely decreased appetite is associated with snacking between meals. The child did not eat well at breakfast, an hour later he was offered a sandwich, an hour later he eats yogurt and does not want to eat again at lunch. Or the schoolboy returns home when the adults are still at work. He gets out of the fridge and eats a piece of sausage. Mom returns, offers him food, but he has no appetite.

    If you want your child to have an appetite, you should not feed him between meals.

    Reason Three: Individual Development

    As you know, children are very different, and their needs for food are also different. One child is restless, worn like a top, jumping endlessly, everywhere he climbs. The other is calm, sedentary, prefers quiet games, likes to listen when they read books to him. The first, as a rule, is thin, regardless of what and how much it eats, everything burns in its energy furnace. The second is usually well-fed, although it can eat less than the first. The nutritional needs of children largely depend on the costs of physical exertion, growth, heat production, and the fight against infections.. It got colder on the street - the child began to eat better, the growth in puberty accelerated - the appetite improves, he runs on the street - he “started eating appetite.

    Along with the differences in the energy needs of each child, there are different digestion possibilities (splitting and absorption of food), its own metabolic rate. And depending on this, the need for food in children of the same age can also vary significantly.

    The measure of the adequacy of the nutrition of the child is not the amount of food he absorbs, but the level of his development: growth rate, fatness, timeliness of appearance of new skills in him.

    Often they go to the doctor not because the child eats poorly, but because: “I feed him, feed him, and his ribs stick out anyway”. And sometimes it is extremely difficult to convince the mother (and especially the grandmother) that it should be so, that this is normal.

    It should be so because children grow unevenly. Up to 3 years, the so-called “period of the first fullness” continues, when weight gains somewhat outpace growth rates. But after 3–4 years, a period of stretching begins (the so-called “half-height growth spurt”).The child accelerates in growth, and it seems that he is losing weight. And in the first class most of the children are thin and slim.

    “Most, but not all” - you will say, and you will be right. Yes, indeed, children, among other things, differ from each other and their physical characteristics. Some narrow with an elongated cylindrical chest, with long arms and legs and with a small amount of adipose tissue - asteniki. Others with a broad chest, strong bones, well developed muscles and a tendency to increased fat deposition. Both are perfectly normal. But why such differences? Maybe the point is nutrition? Everything is much simpler. Look at yourself in the mirror. The child is like you, not only the color of the eyes and the shape of the ears, but also the characteristics of the physique.

    Reason Four: Loads

    Of course, you had to watch the children. At home, on the street they can run for hours, jump, jump, and tumble. A child is by nature a clot of energy that requires an exit. As this energy is consumed, there is a need to replenish it, that is, appetite appears. Extremely rarely (I don’t even remember) children who regularly go in for sports complain about the lack of appetite.

    In our clinic, a rather large group of girls swimmers and girls gymnasts were examined. We carried out a preventive examination of Nakhimov people and cadets. Bad appetite is not noticed by anyone. And the point is not that they are poorly fed. They just all have a high level of physical activity.

    High energy costs - and the child has no problems with appetite.

    It is possible that in the given example also matters the phenomenon of "collective power". Back in the old days, well-off people who had low-spirited offspring used to invite poor children to dinner. It turns out that a good appetite is contagious. And nowadays, when a child eats in a team and when he knows that what he does not eat, with pleasure his colleagues will eat, it acts on his appetite very excitingly.

    But relatives of a full boy complain of his lack of appetite. It turns out that he was freed from physical education on some far-fetched pretext, after school he additionally engaged in a foreign language, in the music school he played the violin, in the evening - at the computer. An ordinary modern child! What is there to be surprised? Yes, and with reduced appetite, he is overweight.

    How can you help here? We'll have to break the entire existing way of family life. It is not enough to give good advice to your offspring. Here you need a personal example. We'll have to go jogging with him in the morning, play football with him in the afternoon, ski in the winter, cycle in the summer, take him to the pool, go hiking. Or - to recognize their parental failure and leave everything as is.

    Reason Five: Feeding through Force

    Well, of course, it is impossible to force an appetite, but it is possible to force one to eat one’s child without any appetite. And many go this way. You can often hear: “Well, immediately make! We do not force our child, we persuade him ”. Indeed, what kind of tricks do not invent the household to saturate the beloved child.

    Of course, you can put porridge or mashed potatoes in your child’s mouth, but will the food be assimilated during this feeding? The works of academician IPPavlov were proved and subsequently repeatedly confirmed that for normal digestion it is not enough to place food in the stomach. It is necessary that the food looks appetizing, that it smells deliciously and causes the release of the fiery gastric and intestinal juices.

    Food taken by fraud is poorly digested and not fully digested.and also disrupts the reflex activity of the digestive tract and contributes to the development of its diseases.

    Well, absolutely unacceptable feeding a child under threat of punishment. Under the influence of fear, the development of digestive juices stops altogether, there are spasms of the stomach and intestines, vomiting and involuntary defecation are possible. This is the way neurosis is formed - the syndrome of habitual vomiting.

    Food for a child means a lot - it is his growth, his development, his energy and his health. But lowering the child's appetite is not a tragedy at all. Of course, this may be one of the symptoms of a disease, but more often this is the result of power errors.

    Why a child does not eat?

    If the toddler refuses to eat, he has, according to Komarovsky, two reasons: he cannot or does not want to eat.

    It can not - this means that the appetite is present, but physically difficult to eat. For example, mothers have no taste for milk (the woman has something to eat), a hole in the nipple is too small, and the porridge does not suck, etc. In infants, the intestines quite often work during sucking, not by the time its peristalsis is activated . The tummy twists, the baby hurts, he stops to eat and cries.

    Quite often, the child has a root in appetite problems in the mouth. Stomatitis, inflamed gums when teething, gum microtraumas (scratches from toys that have been in the mouth, or nails) - all this makes the process of absorbing food rather unpleasant.

    Sometimes the appetite is absent during a cold or ARVI. If the nose does not breathe, then during sucking to block access to oxygen, which is uncomfortable, and the child stops eating. If you have a sore throat and swallow unpleasantly, you will almost always refuse to eat.

    Sometimes a child doesn’t like the food offered by itself - it is hot or too cold, salty or unsalted, large or pureed.

    It all depends on the personal preferences of each individual child. If mothers and fathers managed to understand that the child wants to eat, but cannot, then it is best to consult a doctor to find and eliminate the obstacle that prevents the crumbs from eating normally.

    If a child does not eat well or does not eat at all, because eating gives him discomfort, he simply does not want to eat. However, you should not immediately accuse him of hooliganism and insist that the porridge be eaten. Reluctance to eat also has its own reasons:

      Disease. Even if the parents have not yet noticed that the baby is falling ill, he himself, as a rule, begins to feel negative changes in his body in advance. In this case, a child who does not eat anything simply “turns on” a protective mechanism — on an empty stomach, immunity is easier to deal with the causative agent. It is not necessary to feed the baby by force, he does everything correctly, as his natural instincts suggest. But this is true only for acute infections. If a child has a long-term chronic illness, lack of appetite is a bad symptom, but this is rarely the case.

    The children's body easily gets used to new conditions for itself, and therefore the baby with a protracted illness begins to eat, as usual, and with some ailments, for example, with diabetes, even an increased appetite is observed. Komarovsky gives certain recommendations on how to feed a sick child: in any way, until he asks. And the mother should not be ashamed at all that she does not feed the sick child. This is the best she can do now for his speedy recovery.

    • Refusal to eat "by conviction." This happens with teenage children, especially girls. If she suddenly decides that she has become “fat,” and there is a need to “urgently do something about it,” offer your child lighter and healthier products (salads, boiled meat, fruits, milk). If a girl refuses to eat it, then fasting becomes pathological and is quite comparable with a symptom of a mental illness that leads to anorexia and a slow death or disability of the girl. In this situation, feeding with force is not an option either, says Komarovsky, since the true reason for the hunger strike must be eliminated. This will help the psychiatrist and adolescent psychologist or psychotherapist.

    • Refusal to eat for no reason. There are also such children who eat little or little or no desire to eat without any illnesses. According to Komarovsky, they still have their own reasons for not wanting to eat, such as the individual characteristics of the metabolism. After all, one child's digestion is faster, nutrients are absorbed and absorbed faster, while others process more slowly. Therefore, such a “slow” child refuses to cook dinner, because he still has breakfast in the process of processing.

    Appetite depends on the level of hormones.

    If a child grows faster (his mom and dad are tall), then he will be bigger and more often than his peer, who is genetically “not shining” tall.

    The presence of appetite affects the level of energy consumption. If the child runs and jumps in the fresh air, then it gets hungry faster than if it sits in front of the TV and watch cartoons.

    To return to the child's appetite is simply enough to adjust the energy consumption. - walk more, burn the child in the sports section. In the end, the whole family go on evening walks before dinner - this will surely give a positive result.

    Parental errors

    Very often parents try to treat a non-existent disease. If no serious acute pathologies and infections are found in a child, it can be difficult for parents to admit that the child does not eat because he is not being brought up like this. And the testing begins, and there are necessarily diagnoses that are “as if not there” and their treatment is a waste of time and money.

    Komarovsky advises to stop carrying the child to polyclinics and laboratories, to leave him alone and just change the mode of the day and lifestyle - enter longer walks, cool baths, do sports.

    Many parents force their child to eat by force.

    These actions include Yevgeny Komarovsky's favorite tricks: “Look, the spoon has flown, flew,” “Eat, or we won't go to the park!”, “So I'll tell my dad!”. A cornered kid under pressure will eat, but without appetite. This means that less gastric juice will be excreted, the liver will cope with its part of the work more slowly, and digestion will be difficult. The benefits of feeding by force are less than harm.

    It is also wrong to give food not according to age. If a child does not eat slices a year, requiring mashed food, this can be quite justified. If he has only 2 teeth in his mouth, there is simply nothing to chew on the pieces. However, mothers who have read that the pieces will surely stimulate the rest of their teeth to grow more quickly, immediately sound the alarm: they say, their appetite was gone. Komarovsky calls for a realistic assessment of the capabilities of his child. Nobody asks to wipe his food up to 5-7 years, but to make it digestible, at least until 6-8 teeth come out, it is quite capable of any parents.

    Watch the video: 7 Causes for Loss of Appetite in Babies (April 2020).