At birth, my first baby was tongue-tied and struggled with nursing. We got over that hurdle, and then at five weeks, he started getting a birthmark called a hemangioma. It appeared on his lower jaw and eventually grew to be the size of a baseball cut in half. A couple weeks later, after vomiting and crying incessantly for several days, he was diagnosed with gastroesophageal reflux disease, or acid reflux. By eight weeks, he had lost so much weight that he was classified as “failure to thrive.”
Ask any new mom to live with that label for even a day. As if questioning the ability for your baby to “thrive” wasn’t horrible enough, they threw in “failure.” Even now, seven years later, getting food in his little body remains a struggle and he rides a line well below the zero percentile on our doctor’s growth chart.
- Olive oil. Pour it into and onto everything, and don’t skimp. (I also cook with a little coconut oil).
- Carton egg whites are pasteurized, do not need to be cooked and have very little taste. Add to most anything for a healthy dose of protein.
- Carrot baby food and carrot smoothie juices can be added to all that orange and red food that kids love.
- Extra firm tofu can be chopped into small curds and boiled with pasta. There’s no taste. And when asked what it is, casually reply, “cheese.” They’ll never know.
- If you do have some extra time, puree pre-cooked chicken pieces (store bought or leftovers) and throw into mac n’ cheese and pasta sauces without detection.
- Sneak in the unexpected. I just discovered yellow carrots and they went over big. And, in our house, breakfast for dinner is always a hit.