Why are millions of children in India still underweight? Symptoms, causes and treatments.
Are you wondering why millions of children in India are still underweight? Well, you should know that reasons for not gaining weight are not only from calorie intake but also from dependence on a carbohydrate-based diet low in protein and fat. Read on to know the symptoms, causes, and treatments of poor weight gain in children.
Table of Contents
Symptoms of poor weight gain in children
The symptoms of poor weight gain in children are listed below.
- Weight is stagnant for more than three months
- No height increase for more than six months, except in the older age group
- Easily fatigued, sometimes experiencing fainting spells and dizziness
- Catch infections easily or constantly still
- The problem of absentmindedness and low concentration
- Binge eating disorder
- Mood disorder
- Rigidness, irritability, irrational fears, and worries, making them prone to risky or troubling behavior
Causes of poor weight gain in children
Listed below are the most common reasons for not gaining weight in children.
- Inadequate food intake: When children start reducing food intake, it can result in inadequacies such as low iron, low vitamins, low proteins, and low calcium.
- Failure to assimilate or inability to absorb and retain nutrients: This is due to reasons such as food intolerance, gluten sensitivity, wheat or proteins causing stomach sickness, lactose intolerance, unable to tolerate milk and milk products like curd, cheese or milk in any other form, medical reasons, worm infestations, frequent illnesses such as diarrhea, fever and respiratory allergies, food allergies due to colors and preservatives in the food, thyroid dysfunction, tuberculosis, genetic diseases such as Down’s syndrome and inborn error of metabolism, and certain medications that can interfere with the absorption of food.
Other common reasons for not gaining weight in children are listed below.
- Parents have inadequate knowledge about the daily food requirement according to the age of the children.
- Eating amidst distractions such as the TV or a quarrel in the house.
- Forceful feeding.
- Children are made to eat in a hurry.
- No encouragement is given to eat healthy food.
- A lot of family outings involving eating junk and fast foods.
- Parents are either too strict or too yielding to the demands of their children.
- Children have unhealthy eating patterns.
Read Also:- 5 Tips for Feeding Physically Active Kids
Complications of poor weight gain in children
Ignoring poor weight gain in children can lead to the following complications.
- Nutritional deficiencies such as anemia, bone pains, brittle bones, rickets, osteoporosis, extreme dryness of skin, and early hair loss.
- Low immunity.
- Growth retardation.
- Delayed puberty.
- Problems in concentrating, learning and memory.
- Cardiac problems.
Diagnosis of poor weight gain in children
A detailed clinical assessment of the child’s physical and mental growth is conducted. The following parameters are important to design a customized treatment plan for the child.
- Height and weight records
- Child’s growth milestones
- Mother’s pregnancy history
- Underlying medical illnesses
- Behavioral issues
- Environmental triggers
- Nutritional intake and eating patterns of the child
Treatments for poor weight gain in children
The conventional treatments include supplements, medicines for worms, antibiotics for repeated infections, and counseling for behavioral problems. The possible outcomes of conventional treatments include overdose might interfere with food absorption, worm infestations might recur, diarrhea and loss of appetite might interfere with food absorption and slow and tedious process.
This is when homeopathy treatment comes into the picture. The advantages of homeopathy treatment include enhanced food absorption, reduced tendency of having worms, no side effects, improved immunity, faster weight gain, improved food tolerance, reduced frequency of illnesses, improved concentration, a sharper memory, decreased tendency of infections, and improved overall health.
It is highly recommended to visit your nearest homeopathy clinic as soon as you notice poor weight gain symptoms in children.