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Weight Gain Foods for Kids: Best Options and Tips



All children need to put on weight as they grow and mature, but gaining the right amount can be a real hurdle for some children. In fact, despite rising child overweight and obesity rates, many children need a little help gaining weight.

Having the right nutritious foods can help your child gain weight healthily. Here’s a look at the best nutrient and high calorie options to prepare meals and snacks for your child that are both nutritious and weight enhancing.

Keep all food groups in mind as you work on moving the needle on the scales. It’s not just a solid diet of burgers and pizza that makes your child gain weight (although this may be the preferred route!). Even some fruits and vegetables have more calories than you might think.

Try any of the foods in these categories:


  • red meat, including ground beef, steak, and lamb
  • white meat, such as chicken and turkey (especially with skin)
  • Pork sausage, pork chops, bacon, ham and ribs
  • oily fish such as salmon, mackerel, tuna, trout, and sardines
  • Eggs
  • Nut and core butters, such as cashew butter, almond butter, peanut butter, and sunflower butter
  • Nuts and seeds, including pecans, walnuts, almonds, chia seeds, and flax seeds
  • Soy proteins like tofu, tempeh, and soy milk


  • Full fat yogurt
  • Full fat cheese
  • Whole milk or 2 percent milk
  • Buttermilk
  • half and half or cream
  • sour cream
  • cream cheese

fats and oils


fruits and vegetables


  • Smoothies with substantial ingredients such as full-fat yoghurt, nut butter or coconut milk
  • Protein shakes with protein powder, avocado, nut butter or chocolate milk (best if you choose homemade shakes with natural ingredients)
  • hot cocoa with whole milk

There are a variety of causes of underweight in children, many of which are related to three little words (which can sound a bit scary): Failure to thrive.

This medical term is not a disease and has no uniform definition, but it usually refers to a child’s slow growth caused by malnutrition.

Babies may fail to thrive due to nutritional problems, such as:

  • Difficulty breastfeeding
  • an allergy to formula ingredients
  • Reflux

All of these can cause a child to fall behind in their growth pattern.

Children of all ages can fail to thrive due to:

  • an undiagnosed food allergy or intolerance
  • illness
  • oral problems
  • Gastrointestinal complaints
  • Behavioral, developmental, or neurological problems

Certain drugs are also notorious for reducing appetite and causing weight loss or plateaus in children.

Drugs used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children – such as Ritalin, Dexedrine, and Adderall – are particularly known for their decreased appetite side effects. If you think your child’s medications may affect their appetite or weight gain, speak to your pediatrician about your concerns. Do not stop taking medication suddenly.

Sometimes your child’s slow weight gain can be so simple that they are not consuming enough calories for their age. Active, growing children may need more calories than you think. For example, teenagers often need as many calories as adults.

For record keeping – and for your own safety – the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) define “underweight” as being in the lower fifth percentile of the growth chart.

Regardless of the cause of your child’s slow weight gain, the good news is that as a parent you have a great deal of control over one primary healing factor: their diet. A nutritious, high-calorie eating pattern is the best place to start.

You can also lead by example by modeling healthy eating habits and making nutritional decisions.

If any point on your child’s growth chart falls below your expectations, it’s only natural to notice. But some variations in the growth process are normal.

Pediatricians usually look at your child’s weight gain over time, rather than looking at a single low weight when visiting a healthy child. They can also help focus your home efforts on helping your child gain weight.

Don’t worry if your child skips a meal here or there, or suddenly turns up their nose at certain foods (or, let’s face it, a whole category of foods for toddlers).

Children’s appetites can be fickle. Give your child time and space, knowing that this can be a temporary phase. (But keep offering a wide variety of foods!)

Using the foods listed above as building blocks will put you well on your way to preparing meals and snacks to help your child fill out. Try these tips to increase your healthy weight gain even further.

Do not let children fill up with drinks

Fluid intake is certainly important for children from infancy through teenage years. But sometimes too much fluids can compete with food for space in your child’s tummy. To whet your appetite, try offering food before meals with drinks. Also, avoid sugary drinks like sodas and fruit juices.

Allow yourself to eat when you feel hungry

Sure, for most of us, food shouldn’t be wasted all day. However, for children who are struggling to gain weight, allowing them to eat at any time of the day can be a perfectly acceptable approach.

Consider breaking away from the preset meal and snack times that you refer to as “normal” or “right” and simply encourage your child to eat when they are hungry.

Try several small meals a day

Here’s another strategy that goes hand in hand with the “Eat is Always OK” model.

Instead of sticking to a tight schedule for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, you can gamble with the frequency of meals and snacks. Your child can consume more calories eating six to eight smaller meals a day than eating three.

Don’t let kids load up on empty calories

Foods like soda, potato chips, and fast foods can all lead to weight gain, but since these options are generally low in nutrients, they won’t do your child’s health any favors. Opt for more nutritious, whole foods as often as possible.

Include high-calorie supplements in everyday foods

We’re not that keen on the practice of hiding healthy foods in “kid-friendly” packaging (look at you, hidden vegetable biscuits), but incorporating high-calorie additives into everyday foods is a different story.

For example, nut butters, avocados, coconut milk, and other high-calorie ingredients can easily be included in smoothies to add bulk.

And if your child needs to put on weight, using buttermilk in pancakes, sour cream on baked potatoes, or extra cheese in pasta or casseroles is no problem.

Don’t limit your exercise

Since weight gain is essentially a calorie-in and calorie-out equation, it might be tempting to tell an underweight child not to get too active. But children need a lot of exercise every day. Unless recommended by your doctor, it is best not to restrict your activity.

Visit a nutritionist

Putting all the pieces together to help your child gain weight can be stressful. You don’t necessarily have to go alone!

Seeking help from a nutritionist, especially one who specializes in pediatrics, can make a world of difference. With expert knowledge of child nutrition, a child nutritionist can help you make the best diet choices.

You never have to be embarrassed asking your pediatrician a question, even if it feels silly. (Seriously, they heard it all.)

If you are concerned that your child is not gaining weight adequately, or if they seem to have slowed in their progress along the growth curve, don’t be afraid to share your concerns with your pediatrician.

Additionally, if you feel that your child appears “skinny,” low on energy, or has had behavioral changes along with weight loss, go ahead and get in touch. These are all good reasons for further investigation.

Make sure you follow all recommended visits to healthy children to properly monitor your child’s weight gain.

It is definitely worth seeking professional help if your child refuses to eat for a long period of time, for example for more than 24 to 48 hours, especially if you cannot identify a reason such as illness.

Since medications can interfere with healthy weight gain, you should also discuss the effects of new medications with your pediatrician.

As much as we may think weight loss is good in the adult world, it does not necessarily apply to our children. A significant number of children actually need help gaining weight.

Get creative with the foods and suggestions listed above to round out your child’s diet for healthy weight gain.

Whole Grain Pasta Nutrients

Kate Middleton diet plan: How exercise helps with ‘slender physique’ – expert claims



After marrying Prince William in 2011, Kate Middleton has been in the public spotlight for over a decade. Ten years, a royal wedding and three royal babies later, the Duchess shares the same enviable physique. Personal trainer Michael Brigo revealed how.

Michael began: “The Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton, has a lean and athletic physique that is most likely to be sculpted through resistance-based fitness training, which primarily focuses on strength training using bodyweight and weights.

“She is also an outdoor person and is known to enjoy running, skiing and tennis. It wouldn’t surprise me if she ran an average of 10km or more.”

Kate is rarely seen shying away from a workout or even a friendly athletic competition.

In fact, US Open champion Emma Raducanu described the Duchess’ forehand during a doubles match as “amazing”.

It seems the Queen will try any physical activity, whether it’s land sailing at St Andrews, archery lessons at The Way Youth Zone in Wolverhampton or Gaelic football with Irish children.

Also, let’s not forget how Duchess Catherine and Prince William met; The now legendary royal couple shared a love of sport at St Andrews University, where Kate was reportedly involved in rowing, swimming, hockey and tennis.

She also received a gold Duke of Edinburgh award in sixth form college, which is by no means a small achievement.

The challenge requires contestants to participate in “anything that requires a sustained level of energy and physical activity” for several months, suggesting the Duchess has always been athletic.

In a press release later shared by the Palace, Kate explained, “While getting my Gold Award was challenging at times, it’s one of my most memorable experiences from my childhood and I couldn’t recommend it more highly.”

One of Kate’s favorite exercises that anyone can try is the plank.

A royal insider reportedly explained: “There are three elements, the ground plank, the side plank and the prone skydiver, all positions that Kate can hold for 45 seconds or more and repeat each at least 10 times.”

As for her diet, Kate fans can rejoice, as Dr. Charlotte Norton, Medical Director of the Slimming Clinic, told that the Duchess’ main secret is simply having a balanced diet.

She explained: “Kate Middleton is very relatable (even down to her diet) and I think that’s one of the reasons the nation loves her.

“She’s known to be an avid cook and doesn’t shy away from pizza, pasta and curries, which we’re probably all fond of.”

READ MORE: Princess Beatrice’s engagement ring is different from Kate & Meghan’s

Those who want the Duchess’ figure would do well to include “protein (meat, fish, dairy, legumes and nuts), carbohydrates (whole grains), lipids (healthy oils), vitamins, minerals and water” in their diet. according to dr Norton.

Her favorite raw food dishes include gazpacho, sushi, ceviche and goji berries.

And while she’s not a vegetarian, the Queen also likes to stick to plant-based foods when she can.

During her and William’s royal tour of India, chef Raghu Deora, who cooked for the couple during their stay at the Taj Mahal Palace, revealed they enjoyed vegetable kebabs and lentil curry. Hi! reported.

Raghu explained, “It’s all vegetarian because I’ve been told that’s what they prefer.”

READ MORE: James Martin on why you should never put eggs in the fridge

dr Norton concluded: “I truly believe Kate’s secret is consistency.

“There hasn’t been a moment in history where she’s had a dramatic change in her appearance, not even post pregnancy, and I think that’s because it’s compatible with diet and exercise.”

However, in preparation for special occasions, the Duchess is reportedly taking extra precautions and following the Dukan Diet, which author Pierre Dukan says is “the real reason the French stay thin.”

To keep her slim ahead of her wedding in 2011, Kate reportedly tried the high-protein, low-carb diet.

This consists of four phases, Attack, Cruise, Consolidation and Stabilization, but ultimately encourages dieters to “eat as much as they want” out of 100 high-protein and plant-based foods.

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Diet and cervical cancer: What is the link?



Cervical cancer is one of the most common gynecological cancers. The American Cancer Society estimates that approximately 14,000 people in the United States will be diagnosed with cervical cancer in 2022.

Up to 99.7% of cervical cancer cases result from human papillomavirus (HPV) infection. This viral infection causes abnormal changes in the cervix, leading to the development of this form of cancer.

Doctors can diagnose cervical cancer during routine health exams like Pap smears and HPV tests. The condition is often asymptomatic.

In addition to regular Pap smears and HPV testing, there are three HPV vaccines that protect against some strains of HPV that are known to cause cervical cancer.

Other factors that affect the progression of HPV to cervical cancer include smoking, exposure to environmental toxins, co-infection with sexually transmitted infections such as HIV, and diet and nutrition.

Diet and nutrition play a role in the development of cervical cancer.

In fact, proper nutrition helps optimize the immune system, which in turn eliminates HPV and helps the body respond to cancerous tumors.

However, research on the role of diet in preventing or reducing the risk of developing cervical cancer has focused on antioxidant nutrients and dietary patterns that mitigate the effects of HPV.

High-inflammatory diets – similar to the Western diet – have been linked to the development of cervical cancer, particularly in women with HPV infection and a sedentary lifestyle.

A Western diet — which is typically high in saturated and trans fats, added sugars, and sodium — has been reported to increase chronic inflammation and make HPV infection more difficult to control. Persistent HPV infection leads to the development of cervical cancer.

On the other hand, following a Mediterranean diet — high in fruits, vegetables, peas or beans, healthy fats, and fish — can lead to a lower risk of both HPV infection and cervical cancer.

The intake of antioxidants such as the carotenoids lutein, zeaxanthin and beta-carotene as well as vitamins C, E and A can suppress the development of cervical cancer, especially in smokers.

In addition, nutrients like folic acid, vitamin D, and lycopene can stop the progression of HPV to cervical cancer.

Each of these antioxidant nutrients play distinct protective and overlapping roles during the developmental stages of cervical cancer.

Therefore, it is best to focus on overall dietary patterns rather than just individual nutrients.

An observational study of nearly 300,000 women suggests that increased intake of fruits and vegetables — which are high in various antioxidant nutrients — is associated with a reduced risk of cervical cancer.

A daily intake of 100 grams (g) of fruit, equivalent to 1 cup of cranberries, has been linked to a reduced risk of cervical cancer. Likewise, a daily increase of 100g of vegetables has a similar effect.

Adopting a dietary pattern similar to the Mediterranean diet reduces inflammation and the risk of cervical cancer.

A person could eat more:

  • Fruits and vegetables with an emphasis on a variety of colors and textures
  • complex carbohydrates such as brown rice, pasta, bread and couscous
  • Nuts, seeds, and olive oils, which are healthy unsaturated fats to replace saturated and trans fats
  • Herbs and spices, such as onion and garlic, while limiting sodium supplements
  • Low-fat dairy products such as milk, cheese and yogurt
  • Legumes such as peas, lentils and beans, including chickpeas and red beans

In addition to a balanced and nutritious diet, taking a daily multivitamin in women with HPV is associated with less severe HPV infection and a lower risk of progression to cervical cancer.

Foods with high inflammatory potential are associated with an increased risk of cervical cancer.

The “fast food culture” of the Western diet, characterized by processed foods low in fiber and high in added sugar, increases inflammation and is implicated in the development of cancer.

Foods to limit or avoid include:

  • Foods high in added sugars
  • processed meats such as cured meats
  • Red meat
  • Foods high in saturated and trans fats

Excessive consumption of added sugars from sugary drinks, dairy desserts and table sugar significantly increased the risk of cancer in a 10-year observational study of over 100,000 people.

Red meat, such as veal, pork, and lamb, in amounts of 101–200 g per day has been linked to an increased risk of cancer in both premenopausal and postmenopausal women.

Limit your intake of animal and processed sources of saturated and trans fats, which research has shown promote the growth of cancerous tumors.

Naturally occurring and plant sources of saturated fats and trans fats had no negative impact on cancer risk.

Pro-inflammatory foods upset the balance of the “good” bacteria that live in the gut, triggering inflammation and increasing the risk of cancer.

There are several natural home remedies that promise to treat or cure cervical cancer without medical intervention.

Some natural practices — like drinking green tea — may offer benefits for someone with cervical cancer. However, these do not replace the need for appropriate medical intervention and treatment.

Despite the emerging research on medicinal herbs to treat cervical cancer, more research is needed on these cancer-fighting plants, their active ingredients, and safe dosages.

Always consult with your oncology medical team to determine the best treatment options.

Cervical cancer is one of the most common gynecological cancers. Infection with HPV causes 99.7% of cases.

There is a clear link between diet and nutrition, the progression of HPV infection and the subsequent development of cervical cancer.

The fast-food culture of the Western diet — whose hallmarks are processed foods, red meat, low fiber and high added sugars — is pro-inflammatory and linked to an increased risk of cervical cancer.

Research suggests that antioxidant nutrients like carotenoids, vitamins A, C, E, D, and folic acid — all of which are prevalent in a Mediterranean diet — may prevent or reduce HPV infection and thus the development of cervical cancer.

Limit pro-inflammatory foods and increase the amount of fruits and vegetables rich in antioxidant nutrients to reduce the risk of cervical cancer.

Avoid substituting natural home remedies for appropriate medical interventions and treatments to treat cervical cancer. Consult with your oncology medical team to find the best treatment options.

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Not All Calories Are Equal – A Dietitian Explains How the Kinds of Foods You Eat Matter to Your Body



Even when two foods have the same calorie count, there can be huge differences in how they affect your body.

A calorie is a calorie is a calorie, at least from a thermodynamic point of view. It is defined as the amount of energy required to heat 1 kg of water by 1 degree

The Celsius scale, also known as the Celsius scale, is a temperature scale named after the Swedish astronomer Anders Celsius. On the Celsius scale, 0 °C is the freezing point of water and 100 °C is the boiling point of water at 1 atm pressure.

“> Centigrade (2.2 pounds at 1.8 degrees

The Fahrenheit scale is a temperature scale named after German physicist Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit, based on one he proposed in 1724. On the Fahrenheit temperature scale, the freezing point of water is at 32°F and water boils at 212°F, a 180°F separation as defined at sea level and normal atmospheric pressure.


But when it comes to your body’s health and energy levels, not all calories are created equal.

For example, some studies have reported that diets high in protein, low in carbohydrates, or a combination of both result in greater weight loss than diets with other levels of fat, protein, and carbohydrates.

If every calorie in food was the same, you wouldn’t expect differences in weight loss among people consuming the same number of calories spread across different types of food.

Nutritionists like me know that there are many factors that affect what a calorie does to your body. Here’s what we know so far about calories and nutrition.

Energy that is actually available to your body

At the end of the 18th century, the chemist WO Atwater and his colleagues developed a system for finding out how much energy – i.e. how many calories – different foods contain. Basically, he burned food samples and recorded how much energy they released in the form of heat.

But not every bit of energy in food that can be burned in the laboratory is actually available to your body. What scientists call metabolizable energy is the difference between the total energy of the food you eat and the energy that leaves your body undigested in feces and urine. For each of the three macronutrients—protein, carbohydrate, and fat—Atwater devised a percentage of the calories in it that would actually be metabolized.

Calorie Macronutrient Chart

According to the Atwater system, it is estimated that one gram of each macronutrient provides a specific number of calories. The US Department of Agriculture still uses these calculations today to come up with an official calorie count for each food.

How much energy you use

What you eat can affect what scientists call your body’s energy use. That’s how much energy it takes to keep you alive — energy you expend to breathe, digest, get your blood flowing, and so on — along with what you expend to move your body. You may have heard this called metabolism.

The quality of the diet can alter the body’s energy expenditure, also known as the thermic effect of food. For example, in one study, people who ate the same number of calories per day but ate either a low-carb or low-fat diet had differences in total energy expenditure of about 300 calories per day. Those on a very low-carb diet used the most energy, while those on a low-fat diet used the least.

In another study, high-fat diets resulted in lower total energy expenditure than high-carb diets. Other researchers reported that although replacing fat with carbohydrates did not change energy expenditure, people who increased their protein intake to 30% to 35% of their diet used more energy.

Nutritional information food labels

There’s a lot more to nutrition labels than just calorie information—and for good reason.

In general, a diet high in carbohydrates, fat, or both results in a 4% to 8% increase in energy expenditure, while high protein meals result in an 11% to 14% increase over resting metabolic rate. Protein has a higher thermic effect because it is harder for the body to break down. While these fluctuations aren’t huge, they could be contributing to the obesity epidemic by promoting subtle average weight gain.

quality of the calories you eat

Nutritionists look at a food’s glycemic index and glycemic load — that is, how quickly and by how much it raises your blood sugar levels. A rise in blood sugar triggers the release of insulin, which in turn affects energy metabolism and storing excess energy as fat.

Foods like white rice, cakes, cookies and chips all have a high glycemic index/load. Green vegetables, raw peppers, mushrooms and legumes all have a low glycemic index/load. There is evidence that foods with a lower glycemic index/load are better at regulating blood sugar levels, regardless of the calories they contain.

Reward centers in the brain light up when people eat high glycemic index/load foods, highlighting the pleasurable and addictive effects of foods like candy or white bread.

The fiber content of foods is another thing to consider. Your body can’t digest fiber — found in plant foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and beans — for energy. Therefore, high-fiber foods tend to have less metabolizable energy and can help you feel full with fewer calories.

friends at dinner

Food provides more than calories.

Empty calories — those from foods with minimal or no nutritional value — are another factor to consider. Things like white sugar, soda, and many ultra-processed snack foods don’t offer much, if any, benefit in terms of protein, vitamins, or minerals along with their calories. The opposite would be nutrient dense foods, which are high in nutrients or fiber but still relatively low in calories. Examples are spinach, apples and beans.

And don’t think of empty calories as neutral. Nutritionists consider them harmful calories because they can have negative health effects. Foods that contribute the most to weight gain are potato chips, potatoes, sugar-sweetened beverages, and meat, both processed and unprocessed. On the other hand, vegetables, whole grains, fruits, nuts, and yogurt are foods that are inversely associated with weight gain.

More about health than calories and weight

It is undisputed that the most important factor for weight loss is the difference between the number of calories burned and the number of calories exerted through exercise. But make no mistake. While weight plays a role in health and longevity, weight loss alone does not equate to health.

Yes, some high-protein diets seem to promote weight loss, at least in the short term. But epidemiologists know that in areas where people live the longest — nearly 100 years on average — people eat mostly plant-based diets, with very little or no animal protein and little or moderate fat in the form of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats .

I often hear friends or clients say things like “it’s these carbs that are making me fat” or “I have to go on a low carb diet”. But these ailments drive nutritionists like me insane. Carbohydrates include foods like Coca-Cola and candy canes, but also include apples and spinach. Reducing simple carbohydrates such as soft drinks, refined flour baked goods, pasta and sweets is definitely beneficial to health. But cutting out carbohydrates like vegetables and fruits has the opposite effect.

A plant-based diet high in plant-based protein and carbohydrates, mostly from vegetables, fruits, nuts, and legumes, is the healthiest diet researchers know for longevity and the prevention of chronic diseases like heart disease, cancer, high blood pressure, and many other conditions .

The modern western diet suffers from an increase in the amount of calories ingested while at the same time decreasing the quality of the calories ingested. And researchers now know that calories from different foods have different effects on feelings of satiety, insulin response, the process of converting carbohydrates into body fat, and metabolic energy expenditure.

When it comes to your health, you count more on the quality of the calories you consume than on the number of calories.

Written by Terezie Tolar-Peterson, Associate Professor of Food Science, Nutrition & Health Promotion, Mississippi State University.

This article was first published in The Conversation.The conversation

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