CerebralPalsy.ie

Cerebral palsy on a diet

Children suffering from cerebral palsy may have considerable problems with eating. Their dietary needs are also more specific than the needs of healthy children. This can make preparing food, and mealtimes very challenging.

Feeding the bones

Children with cerebral palsy often have brittle and weak bones, easy to fracture or break. To prevent this, you should introduce a diet rich in calcium, vitamin D, and phosphorus.

Calcium is most easily found in milk, cheese, yoghurt, and other dairy products. One and half pint of whole milk should be enough to cover one’s daily need for calcium. If your child is allergic to cow’s milk, providing enough calcium without supplements may be tricky. They should eat canned sardines, kale, and broccoli.

Vitamin D is produced by our own bodies when we absorb enough sunlight during a day. Your child should spend as much time outside as possible to get enough vitamin D. On overcast days or in the winter, however, you may want to feed them fatty fish like salmon and tuna, and eggs, which are rich in vitamin D and other important nutrients.

Phosphorus is important for your bones and teeth. A diet rich in phosphorus should include dairy, eggs, fish, and nuts.

Count those calories

Your child may need a diet richer or poorer in calories, depending on how active he is and how tense his muscles are. Children who are less active should also eat less, because overeating may lead to obesity and further health problems. If you aren’t sure what diet would be best for your child, don’t hesitate to ask a professional dietician for advice.

2 comments

  • Martha

    It’s all nice and swell, but when your child has reflux and can’t eat without help, eating even a small amount of anything is very complicated.

  • Eddie

    You shouldn’t drink milk unless it’s from a proven source. Cows are fed so many antibiotics nowadays that it can do more harm than good.

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