Question

Children's Health

Why is my child so thin?

A Answers (2)

  • ASarah LoBisco, Integrative Medicine, answered

    One of the core concepts of Naturopathic Medicine is to look at the individual to find the cause. You may want to consider things that may not usually be considered such as malabsorption of food due to damage to the intestinal tract lining. This can be caused by various things such as immune imbalances, food allergies or sensitivites, eating a diet that is deficient in nutrients, such as good quality proteins. You may want to get further testing if diet alone isn't working ro rule out some of these factors.

  • I understand your concern with this, because my own mother had a similar concern for me when I was growing up.  She asked that very question to our family doctor who replied,  “give it some time, and it will catch up to him.”  In my case, it did.

    In general, a few things that can play a role in a child’s weight are growth spurts, activity level, and genetic factors.  Having a lower body weight due to one or a combination of these things could be considered normal (for example: he is at a point where he is growing very quickly, while at the same time playing sports, and the men in your family were thin kids as well).  

    However, there are other things that may be occurring or could also be playing a role.  Is he eating a healthy diet?  If there is a consistent calorie deficit (that is to say, he consistently consumes fewer calories than are burned) you could expect a decrease in body weight.  If he is eating properly and eating enough, is his weight fairly stable, or does his weight continue to drop?  If so, it could be time to visit the family physician in order to see if there is something else going on.  

    Putting any normal factor aside, since his weight has you alarmed the best place to start is a visit to his pediatrician.  They can best help you determine if this is something temporary, or if there is any problem.  If there’s nothing wrong, the visit will put your mind at ease.  If there’s something else happening, they can help make it right.
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