She Says… Hollow Leg

Well if New Years weekend was defined by puking and NOT eating, this past weekend has been defined by eating everything in sight.

For Owen, thankfully, not me.

The kid must have a hollow leg or something. Yesterday he was pretty cranky and every time I asked him, “Are you hungry?” he said yes. And he ate. Boy, did he eat.

6:15am – Sippy cup of milk
7:20am – Scrambled egg, 1 waffle with butter and jelly, pomegranate seeds, 1/2 banana
8:00am – Dry cereal and steamed carrots (random… I was packing up a snack to take to a friend’s house and he just kept saying and signing, “More! More!”)
8:45am – Pretzels in the car to keep him from screaming the entire time (Yeah, we’re still not over the “I hate the carseat with a passion” phase)
10:00am – Banana bread at a friend’s house (He would’ve eaten several pieces if I hadn’t cut him off)
10:45am – Hot dog, cheese, steamed broccoli, cauliflower and carrots (the random “clean out the ‘fridge” snack I packed for our morning playdate)
12:00pm – Sippy cup of milk, crackers and green peppers with hummus for dipping, more pomegranate seeds and a few bites of my yogurt
3:00pm – Pirate booty and apple sticks (his favorite snack to snap him out of the post-bad-nap weeping)
5:00pm – Another sippy cup of milk, lemon pepper fish, green beans and sweet potato fries.
5:30pm – Black beans, pomegranate seeds, more sweet potato fries and frozen raspberries (apparently not finished eating!)

Today has been much of the same. I usually stick to fruits, veggies and proteins more than carbs, but the kid seems to be carbo-loading. Perhaps he’s running some marathon I’m not aware of. Or just refilling the fuel tank that he emptied last weekend. Either way, I’m fully expecting him to bust out of all of his clothes by the end of the week.

I know toddlers’ eating habits wax and wane and kids generally eat exactly what they need. And I like to follow Owen’s cues to figure out how much I should put on his plate, but I’m beginning to wonder if I should cut him off! I assume this only gets worse when he is a teenager…

Has your toddler gone through similar periods of eating everything in sight? Or perhaps in the other direction, a food strike?


11 responses to “She Says… Hollow Leg

  1. I wouldn’t cut him off. He’s not filling up on fries or something and growing boys can eat more than you imagine.

    My kid does a Thanksgiving type eating day and then a food strike day and then a Thanksgiving type eating day….there’s a pattern 🙂

  2. I agree, I wouldn’t cut him off, either … kids won’t stuff themselves senseless the way we do (er, *I* do ;)) and he is a growing boy. I had the opposite problem yesterday… Maya didn’t want to eat anything and shook her head NO at everything we offered. She drank some milk … ate a few bites and was done. Oh well. Hoping she fared better at daycare but it’s hard. So many things come into play with respect to their appetites. They are very smart. He might just be making up for lost time last week 😉 Either way, glad he is on the mend — and have fun shopping for new clothes 😉

  3. Elle goes both ways, too. This weekend she couldn’t eat enough – I swear she ate more than I did at every meal. Today she barely even ate dinner. I just go with it, although sometimes it’s frustrating when I’m stressing about balanced meals and she’s all like “Mom, I’ll eat, but only if it is fruit.”

    These kids … 🙂

  4. Sounds like a good old fashioned growth spurt!

  5. I call that impressive! And I agree with everyone else. He’s eating a great assortment of good food and the little guy was ready for solids early to begin with, so it’s no surprise he’s got a great appetite. Cameron is much like how Kara describes Faith. There are many days that he eats like a bird and others he will eat MUCH more.

    Are there things that Owen specifically doesn’t like? He seems like such a great eater, but is he showing any signs of being picky about anything in particular so far?

    Cameron is generally good, but there are things that he is now starting to drop out of his mouth half chewed if the texture catches him off guard (I think it’s a texture thing). Like yesterday, I made him an Annie’s Shells pasta mixed with greek yogurt, broccoli & edamame and he loves it (usually without the edamame), but it caught him off guard I think because he was happily eating away and then came “the ewwww face” and they came right back out onto his plate. He can sometimes do the same thing with ground meat or things with varying textures in the same dish if the textures are noticeably diverse.

  6. @Angie All The Way, We’re currently in a not-very-picky phase. If you had asked me a few months ago, I was really struggling with the “just put a variety of foods on the plate and let him eat what he wants” philosophy because it felt like it was BACKFIRING, big time. I’m considering us lucky right now 🙂

    Currently he’ll put almost everything I hand him in his mouth to try. Sometimes things come right back out (like tomatoes), but he eats most things. He’s been rejecting chicken and beef recently, so I’m taking a break on that. I’ll try again in a week or two. One of the only things he absolutely WILL NOT eat is pasta. Strange. But overall he’s a great eater.

  7. I feel like I’m constantly feeding my kids. Glad to know I’m not the only one who is wearing out the revolving door to my kitchen! At least he is getting a ton of healthy foods – be proud, mama! I think a constant eater is much less stressful than a picky eater.

  8. As a dietitian I will say that young children know when they are hungry and full much better than us as adults. Also there are some days when they eat very little and other days when they eat a ton and it all averages out. Interesting enough these days there are pre-school age children who do not listen to their hunger anymore (that was never the case in the past) but it has a lot to do with the processed foods they are eating. So I would not be concerned, he’s eating tons of nutritious foods and clearly needs the calories. If he was eating fast food, high sugar, white refined products then I would cut him off of those things but that’s not the case! I mean it’s hard to stop eating cookies when you start and it’s similar for them. But who overeats vegetables?!

  9. yes, the food strike option. a 12 month food strike! started the day we started solids.

  10. Bravo to you for giving him such a diverse selection of foods (especially all in one day)! If I could get my 5yo or 2yo to eat a tenth of those things (variety OR quantity) I would consider myself lucky. It sounds like he’s in a growth spurt and just needs more calories – and it’s so great that he wants to eat so many different healthy and fresh things!

  11. RhodeyGirlTests

    Raffi JUST went through this same thing. I was googling around about growth spurts and toddlers and this old post came up! 🙂

    I swear my 14 almost 15 month old ate more than me for 2 weeks straight. He is finally eating his normal amount again, and not surprisingly he shot out of his clothes. He seems so much bigger and taller now!

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