Monday, May 15, 2017

My Athlete Children



   As a mom I feel like I feed my children a pretty balanced diet. I mean, they will eat pretty much anything and they graze often. So when my seven year old son started having dizzy spells we were at a loss of what was the cause.

  We made several visits to our trusted Pediatrician.  He did several neurological and reflex tests which all yielded normal results. He suggested increasing his electrolytes. I was not quite sure what an electrolyte actually is or how it functioned in the body. Thankfully my husband is quite knowledgeable about these specifics from his triathlon years.

  When the spell hit about a week later, our pediatrician repeated the tests and concluded that it was most likely a combo of things that were going on. ( Doesn't everyone just love a mystery puzzle?) He detected a slight infections deep in the sinus cavity. We started him on a daily allergy treatment along side an antibiotic. We also kept his electrolytes increased.

  That increase got me to start looking at how many calories a kid is actually supposed to be getting on a daily basis according to  U.S pediatric standards. As a grown adult, I know what my needs are. As a mom, I knew what my babies needed. Babies. My babies... They physically aren't babies anymore and their needs have changed. Dramatically, I might add.

  Both of the kids eat pretty much what they want when they want it. I restrict sweets but they know real food is always available for them.They will eat all day long so I was never worried that they weren't eating enough. That was until this dizzy situation with my oldest. Over the past few weeks I have consciously made a note of what, when and how much was being eaten by each kid. It all seemed lagit.

  Puzzled by the food intake I was seeing and thinking it was good, I decided to do a bit of research on what an athletic childs caloric intake need actually is per the American Pediatrics Association. After reading several articles, I was faced with the fact that the kids were indeed short on their daily needs as athletes. Wow, what an eye opener for this Momma!

  Thanks to HeathlyChildren.org  and Nutrition.gov I was able to see what my children need.

     I am such a visual girl that it is difficult for me to grasp quantity in just a written form. Someone can tell me 6 oz of grains and I struggle with what that actually means.


                                                                     Naturally I started to compare an apple to a measurement of a cup. Okay, That is any easier one to sort through, but what about that 6 ounces of grains? Not so easy now to ingest. It could be anything from bread to quinoa, to barley or rice.

More questions started to simmer as I run down my grocery list. Questions like, Is that cooked grains? Does Almond Milk count as dairy? Won't they get constipated if they get 3 cups of cheese a day? Yes, that is where my mind went.

  For today, I have made progress. To learn and actually admit that what I thought was right, really wasn't is a tough pill to swallow. I may not know all of the answers to my questions, but you can bet that I will find out. I will have visual ques to guide my inquisitive brain down this new path of mothering.


Helpful Sites;
https://www.nal.usda.gov/fnic/dietary-guidelines

https://www.healthychildren.org

https://www.aps-spr.org/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3805623/

https://health.gov/dietaryguidelines/2015/guidelines/chapter-2/a-closer-look-at-current-intakes-and-recommended-shifts/

https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/educational/wecan/downloads/calreqtips.pdf