Every child is special and a blessing for their parents. From the news of conception to the moment when we hold them the very first time, the baby’s right growth parameters are our key priority. Exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months makes sure the baby gets whole nutrition from mother’s milk. So far so good, but the main tussle begins when they start with the solid food. It is the real test of patience for every mother to understand and focus on the right growth in children.
Why do mothers need to understand the right growth parameters of growing children?
I have often read mothers asking questions related to their child’s growth in mom community groups on social media networks. Almost every second mother is fighting a battle with a fussy eating kid/s at home. This is one area, where we feel helpless and out of ideas but it is directly proportionate to the child’s growth.
Unhealthy eating habits, dependency on junk food, picky eating, are some of the major causes of lack of nutrition in the kids these days. More so because we inadvertently give in to these demands due to lack of time or our own convenience.
What are these #GrowRight tips?
I recently got an opportunity to learn first-hand the information on the Grow Right tips by Abbott organized in Mumbai. The idea behind this session was to bring an understanding among the mothers on the right growth patterns in children.
Every child is different, so are their growth patterns and eating habits. Pediatrician Dr. Sameer Dalwai explained how mothers often get carried away by feeding kids out of habit/compulsion instead of need.
He further emphasized on ‘gaga over growth’ syndrome among over-concerned parents. According to the #GrowRight tips – “The average growth of a child from the age of two till the growth spurt at puberty continues at a rate of approximately 6–8 cm per year, and 2 kg per year, however, every child has his/her own pace of growth which may vary.”
We must respect the pace at which the child is growing, keeping the standard milestones in view without pushing for them. So, unless it is required and the child is really hungry, feeding him/her will only result in him disliking the food permanently or lead to obesity.
The Grow Right tips covers the 4 critical areas –
- Right Nutrition
- Right Play
- Right Nuture
- Right Impact
Monitoring the Growth
Monitoring growth is an important aspect of understanding the nutritional intake during the first six years. Growth charts are used widely as a standard part of the check-up, and experts can compare results to identify any gaps. These charts allow doctors to assess the right growth parameters in terms of weight, height, age, etc.
It is of vital importance to identify these gaps early and act on the nutritional deficiency on time. Growth monitoring helps us detect irregular growth patterns, in terms of weight and height in accordance with the age. The chances of these irregularities going unnoticed are higher if not monitored at regular intervals.
Bridging the nutritional gap via right growth parameters
We all agree that nutritious food is the prime source of health and immunity in kids. However, when they do not accept this healthy homemade food, the whole idea gets defeated resulting in an imbalanced growth. Physical and mental capabilities are highly dependent on nutritional intake during growing years. Hence, it is of prime importance to feed healthy and nutritious food to the children.
Dr. Mukesh Sanklecha touched upon the unhealthy patterns in child behaviour like lack of focus, or mood tantrums. The habit of having distractions while eating or providing umpteen options for satiating hunger is taking away the joy of eating.
Kids must be involved in the process of nutrition says health enthusiast and celebrity mom Mrs. Lara Dutta Bhupati. She makes sure to involve her daughter in this process and also gets the chance to spend quality time with her.
Bringing up a child is a challenge, but taking right care of their health, growth, and nutrition can be quite overwhelming. We should focus on what is right, especially the right growth parameters. All we need is the right guidance, better understanding, and best in class assistance from industry experts like Pediasure which is summarized into ‘Grow Right tips.’
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