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Thread: Increased Metabolism in Sick Babies

  1. #1

    Default Increased Metabolism in Sick Babies

    My son was hospitalized for a month when he was 4.5 months old. He had acute respitory failure and pneumonia from two viruses and a bacterial infection. He was a pretty sick little boy.

    He is now almost 8 months and happy as a clam, though we still have to nebulize him with Albuterol and Budesonide three times a day. We just can't shake this cough.

    He has not gained much since he left the hospital. He went in at about 14 lbs and is currently 16.1 lbs. His Ped has been worried and we go in once a month for a well check. She has him on 36 oz per day, though I can only manage to get him to eat about 32 oz a day. I have him on an iron-rich multivitamin and we are working hard on purses, but he doesn't have much interest.

    I read that babies that have been sick for an extended period of time tend to have a higher metabolism to fight the illness. Our Ped mentioned that we might have to start putting formula in his BM to calorie load him. I want to avoid this and go a more natural route to get more calories in him.

    Has anyone had experience with this? Is he just not absorbing the calories well enough? Any other ideas on how to put some weight on him?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009

    Default Re: Increased Metabolism in Sick Babies

    I am so sorry your little boy has been unwell, glad he seems to be so much better!

    Personally, in your situation I would be seeking another medical opinion. It may be that your baby is not gaining normally, but what bothers me is the assumption that the answer is formula when there are clearly health issues either from the past or the present that may be impacting this. If your baby is taking in 32 ounces of breastmilk a day, that is certainly normal intake.

    we are working hard on purses, but he doesn't have much interest.
    ? do you mean, solids?

    Breastmilk is high in calories...higher than most foods a baby is likely to eat. If your baby loved solids that would be one thing, then you could tailor those to only the highest calorie foods. but if he is resisting them that is entirely normal at this age and not usually a problem, especially since most solids he would eat would have less calories and fat and be harder to absorb than breastmilk.

    A book I strongly recommend for any parent whose baby or young child has a weight gain concern is My Child Won't Eat by pediatrician Carlos Gonzalez. He offers some very interesting perspectives on the subject of eating and growth.

    I want to avoid this and go a more natural route to get more calories in him.
    when nursing, breast compressions are said to get more fatty milk into baby. If bottle feeding, some moms make "double cream" bottles by skimming the fat off one bottle and mixing it with the contents of another.

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