8

votes

Should kids eat low carb?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created September 18, 2011 at 3:24 PM

I ask this question because I see reports of what paleo peeps tend to feed their children.

I see the odd sweet potato thrown in but even with sweet potato at every meal and moderate fruit, the diet would be less than 100g carbs a day.

Do you think this is a good idea? Just going from gut feeling (heh) rather than extensive research on the subject I'm going to say no. Kids need lots of calories and starch with added fat is a good way of achieving this.

Most of us would be aghast at the idea of feeding a child a low fat diet, so I think equally a low carb one might not be the best idea.

Kids tend to have very good carb tolerance and usually this means ketosis comes a lot easier. Long term ketosis for children just seems like a bad idea.

I have no children myself and cycle my carb intake (though anything above 40% seems to trigger BG issues in me) so feel free to ignore my ramblings, but does anyone else feel concerned about this?

C835934198ffe146cb90eebc22c6b8d8

(844)

on February 06, 2012
at 09:07 PM

Keto-jen I never said soy makes you fat. It doesn't help though if whatever you are eating is fried in soybean oil. Soy has other issues though. And some people do fine with white rice...others don't. I only said MY child seems to do better without refined carbs, sugar and soy.

B999e22df9b9ec64daea50bedefabfe5

(10)

on February 06, 2012
at 01:28 AM

I lived in Japan for quite awhile, and if white rice and soy make people fat, then they must be hiding them somewhere.

B999e22df9b9ec64daea50bedefabfe5

(10)

on February 06, 2012
at 01:24 AM

But were you " trained" to eat Paleo? I think most people try to eat in a more healthy way as adults than they may have as kids. The problem is conflicting " advice" on what is healthy. I had friends in the 90's who thought it was OK to down a box of snack well cookies because they were " low fat".

B999e22df9b9ec64daea50bedefabfe5

(10)

on February 06, 2012
at 01:20 AM

I have what we call a " junk drawer" , and real junk - rice crispy treats and the occasional fruit roll up are mixed in with sunflower seeds, dried fruit, beef jerky, fruit and nut bars, and Graham crackers. My son is sunflower seeds and beef jerky, older daughter may eat the occasional dried mango, and the baby (4) is all about the rice krispy treats. Her favorite snacks, tho are string cheese, peanut butter spoons, and raw veggies. I don't sweat it. She eats maybe one RK treat a week, but it is there.

B999e22df9b9ec64daea50bedefabfe5

(10)

on February 06, 2012
at 12:59 AM

Some hospitals give a few drops of sugar water to baby boys immediately post circumcision. They startle, and seem to ' forget' about the circa whilst trying to figure out the sweet taste. Just thought it was interesting. I saw it done - it worked.

26b7615ef542394102785a67a2786867

(7967)

on September 25, 2011
at 12:32 AM

My brain doesn't work without glucose. YMMV.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 20, 2011
at 05:59 PM

Cravings are an unreliable source of information about what your body needs. When I quit smoking, I craved cigarettes for *years.* I'd look for other indices.

E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on September 20, 2011
at 09:43 AM

@abimorph maybe it does?

149af6e19a06675614dfbb6838a7d7c0

(3202)

on September 19, 2011
at 08:02 PM

Cliff says "i think the biggest thing with modern low carb diets is that they are pretty much an expirement." The experiment is the high carb diet for the last 100 years. We evolved eating less refined carb than we do. In a perfect world, all carbs are less refined and grow under the ground or on trees. This is not a perfect world. Plus, the minute you chew a carb, however unprocessed, you are processing it. Point is, sugar is the problem for disease and ageing. Whether you eat it or it is converted from another carb source, the damage is done as if it were sugar.

149af6e19a06675614dfbb6838a7d7c0

(3202)

on September 19, 2011
at 07:37 PM

Eating lote of fat and cholesterol does not mean starvation. Glucose does not repair or build the brain. It is built with fat, cholesterol and a little protein. How would suppling glucose build the brain. If anything, glucose slows healing and body repair.

1da74185531d6d4c7182fb9ee417f97f

(10904)

on September 19, 2011
at 07:35 PM

He'll eat it with a bunch of butter or sour cream but he doesn't seem too entralled. I'm not pushing too much starch on him yet because babies don't really make the enzymes to break them down yet.

A727956fa3f943057c4edb08ad9e864e

(4183)

on September 19, 2011
at 07:05 PM

How does he feel about white potato? I bloody hate sweet potato, so sickly sweet to me.

A727956fa3f943057c4edb08ad9e864e

(4183)

on September 19, 2011
at 05:56 PM

Pricilla, I would define low carb as less than 30% of calories from carbohydrate.

A727956fa3f943057c4edb08ad9e864e

(4183)

on September 19, 2011
at 05:36 PM

I like civil carbsane, more of this please.

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 19, 2011
at 04:33 PM

The brain does not grow optimally in a real or simulated starvation state.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 19, 2011
at 03:37 PM

Thanks, Mr. T; inflammation is always my first suspect. But I don't know by what mechanism, it's just a theory, whereas the cortisol idea seemed more concrete. And my experience since going VLC/ZC is certainly that I'm never sick, but I haven't seen numbers for other people. I'd be interested in anything published on LC/VLC and infections, colds, etc.

149af6e19a06675614dfbb6838a7d7c0

(3202)

on September 19, 2011
at 03:33 PM

Why would you think a "growing " brain needs glucose to grow? A growing brain needs lots of fat and cholesterol to grow. The problem with kids is that their parents have restricted fats and thus increased the carb grams to make up for the deficit in energy. See low fat/no fat milk in homes and schools ad. nauseum. Teach your kid why high carb diets are bad. Sorry, we don't live in an environment where kids have access to whole food carb sources (tubers, low glycemic fruits etc..) without an abundance of easy to get high processed crap. Teach them why, teach them how and be an example.

485bcefe7f1f7a6df1a293a826bf6137

(2191)

on September 19, 2011
at 01:24 PM

Not to beat a dead horse, but ketosis is the result of the breakdown of fat. Cortisol inhibits that process. So high cortisol during ketosis is unlikely. Last time I checked, VLCers (myself included) had lower incidences of infections, colds, etc, so if cortisol suppresses the immune system, it's unlikely to be high during ketosis. And to Rose, the reduction the symptoms of RA is not a result of a suppressed immune system--it's a result of reduced inflammation.

25f653d9c2581edbafbaabe468bae550

(95)

on September 19, 2011
at 12:00 PM

Amen! Every bite is building their bodies. The nutrition you give your child, determines their future health. Focus on nutrient dense foods. Teach nutrition and healthy living. You give them the best of everything else, so give them the best nutrition.

25f653d9c2581edbafbaabe468bae550

(95)

on September 19, 2011
at 11:53 AM

Being a picky eater may save their life one day. Help them learn to "pick" the best, most nutrient dense food. REAL food won't taste good to them if they eat processed crap all the time. Try adding healthy fats with their carbs, so they don't over consume them. Have fun collecting Halloween candy, then "buy" it from them for lots of cash and maybe an organic dark chocolate bar. Make their nutrition count. Give them the purest, most nutrient dense food you can. If they're properly nourished, consuming too many carbs and excess weight won't be an issue.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on September 19, 2011
at 08:04 AM

I said it MAY be good idea in specific situations, like when it hurts ! It attenuates pain. Also, kids are very active, they will just burn it, its not a problem generally.

7d0c3ea9bf8be00b93e6433d8f125ac3

(7540)

on September 19, 2011
at 04:12 AM

Want to upvote this multiple times.

3b7e6c77a5412587152c9e3f22b41c2a

(434)

on September 19, 2011
at 03:44 AM

The topic of "Why Do People Consider Ketosis Stressful to the Body" has previously been asked and answered here: http://paleohacks.com/questions/25449/why-do-people-consider-ketosis-stressful-to-the-body My take-away from that thread was that there isn't any really compelling reason to consider ketosis to be more stressful to the body than non-ketosis. There may be some suggestive evidence that it is more stressful and some suggestive evidence that it is just fine, but really nothing to worry about, as far as I remember.

E639bc85fd42430285596434a6515ad5

(2226)

on September 19, 2011
at 03:23 AM

Our paleolithic ancestors' children did not generally eat low-carb, so I think it's a good sign that everybody is answering "no" in this thread. Starches and fruit were plentiful in the equatorial tropics where most of human evolution occurred.

78972387772c994caa78513a83978437

(2290)

on September 19, 2011
at 12:33 AM

I'm sorry I don't follow... how is sugar a good idea in a child's diet?

26b7615ef542394102785a67a2786867

(7967)

on September 19, 2011
at 12:21 AM

Ambimorph, I ate low carb for 6 months and my body never stopped craving adequate glucose. I am lean and stick thin like most children eating a whole foods diet will be, so I see no reason not to listen to my body...

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 18, 2011
at 10:55 PM

Hmm. Agnostic is not the right word. I have an opinion, since I have children and have had to make decisions about it. But I'm not arguing about that in this thread.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 18, 2011
at 10:44 PM

I'm somewhat agnostic on the issue of children and carbs. I'm just responding to the posts about ketosis, stress, and cortisol.

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 18, 2011
at 10:34 PM

I've come around with regard to the diets that you guys eat and am willing to agree that in your cases, the theoretical risks are outweighed by the tangible benefits, *however* in the context of the topic at hand, I would not accept that those theoretical risks are outweighed by the theoretical benefits it may give to (what was) a healthy, growing child.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 18, 2011
at 10:02 PM

And of course, that's making the assumption that I am indeed producing cortisol *as a result of* my ketogenic diet, which as Ambimorph points out, is hardly a settled case.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 18, 2011
at 09:54 PM

-- that it may be, but in at least one case (mine), it seems to also be a prophylactic against autoimmunity. I'm not extending this case to anyone else, but it does support my general inclination to not make hard and fast conclusions about whether a particular, individual biochemical action observed in the lab is bad or good. Ultimately health or illness is determined by what happens in the entire body, and while reductionism has its uses, and is sometimes the whole story, it more often is not. Or put another way, the body generally knows what it's doing.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 18, 2011
at 09:51 PM

Hee; this comment thread's spinning out of control. I've spent the last hour combing through this paper ("Obese Men") and trying to learn enough corisol chemistry to get what it's saying. Along the google path, I've learned that cortisol suppresses the immune system. With a fasting BG of 90, I'm sure I've got lots of cortisol. This is an excellent thing, though, as it provides the first real glimmer of understanding for me of why an ultra-ketogenic (ZC) diet provides immediate relief of joint pain/RA symptoms. So to answer Travis's question about cortisol being a stress hormone --

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 18, 2011
at 09:44 PM

According to the authors, obese men had abnormally increased clearance of cortisol, impaired regeneration of cortisol, and correspondingly increased production of cortisol, and the low carb diet corrected these abnormalities.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 18, 2011
at 09:34 PM

Therefore, this study seems to me to be proving that a LCHF diet is actually reducing adrenal stress. I'm not a biochemist, though, so help in interpretation would be welcome.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 18, 2011
at 09:33 PM

But actually, what stands out to me about that, is that it seems to be saying that cortisol use is more efficient on a LCHF diet. In fact, people with adrenal issues are urged to use things like licorice root, because it induces better recycling of cortisol, keeping it in the bloodstream longer, and therefore putting less stress on the adrenal glands.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 18, 2011
at 09:29 PM

However, I'm quite interested in "Dietary Macronutrient Content Alters Cortisol Metabolism Independently of Body Weight Changes in Obese Men".

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 18, 2011
at 09:29 PM

However, I'm quite interested in "Dietary Macronutrient Content Alters Cortisol Metabolism Independently of Body Weight Changes in Obese Men". This is quite interesting.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 18, 2011
at 09:28 PM

I'm also skeptical of "Maternal Consumption of a High-Meat, Low-Carbohydrate Diet in Late Pregnancy: Relation to Adult Cortisol Concentrations in the Offspring", simply because the chances are that any mother who was put on a low carb diet probably had metabolic issues to pass on anyway.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 18, 2011
at 09:25 PM

Re the studies: The fact that cortisol increases gluconeogenesis is totally irrelevant here. That's like saying that the fact that high caffeine intake makes you more alert means that anything making you alert increases your caffeine intake. So I don't see the relevance of "Cortisol increases gluconeogenesis in humans: its role in the metabolic syndrome" (continued)

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 18, 2011
at 09:01 PM

RN, if I eat a diet high in carbs and then don't for one day, my inner child begs for them, too. That doesn't mean I need them.

A727956fa3f943057c4edb08ad9e864e

(4183)

on September 18, 2011
at 08:04 PM

Awesome, I wish my mom was paleo growing up, I might have been able to avoid years of cavities and expensive dentistry, well done!

E4dd16dec3c8a37b1d3fa2ad60bc66ea

(283)

on September 18, 2011
at 07:57 PM

I forgot to add that growing up in that household ALL 3 of us kids ended up with various forms of food addictions/weight battles.

E4dd16dec3c8a37b1d3fa2ad60bc66ea

(283)

on September 18, 2011
at 07:56 PM

I agree! I grew up in a "food battle" household. Our menu in any given week was sponsored by "on weight watchers" or "off weight watchers". Weight watchers meals were things like steamed veggies, dry baked potatoes and broiled chicken. Of weight watchers was things like Hamburger helper (oh goodness, MOM! what were you doing to us?) and spaghetti and hot dogs/grilled cheeses/etc. I personally think they eat what they eat (with my supervision). Sometimes it's 6 string cheeses or 5 slices of bacon or 3 servings of yogurt. It all balances out. As long as I keep the artificial stuff out, I'm good.

E4dd16dec3c8a37b1d3fa2ad60bc66ea

(283)

on September 18, 2011
at 07:52 PM

I think this is where my thoughts lie. I don't ever keep sweets in the house.. but when we go to grandmas or when Halloween rolls around... they get it. When we go to the movies they each get a small treat (from the store, not the jumbo sized boxes at the theaters!).

Ed983a42344945b1ff70fd9597a23493

on September 18, 2011
at 07:10 PM

I agree, ketogenic diets for kids with seizure disorders are nothing short of miraculous...but in my home, if I don't serve adequate carbs to my children(8 and 12)for even one day, they are begging for anything with carbs in it, and go straight to craving bready things...they are both very strong, very fit, very active, and one is hyperactive. They need carbs even if I don't.

Ed983a42344945b1ff70fd9597a23493

on September 18, 2011
at 07:10 PM

I agree, ketogenic diets for kids with seizure disorders are nothing short of miraculous...but in my home, if I don't serve adequate carbs to my children(8 and 12)for even one day, they are begging for anything with carbs in it, and go staight to craving bready things...they are both very strong, very fit, very active, and one is hyperactive. They need carbs even if I don't.

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:50 PM

Good point, Patrik. Rose: A fun fact I just saw in this biochem textbook that may interest you is that during the 40th day of starvation, the brain still uses 40g of glucose per day, and the rest of the body uses another 40g. Red blood cells, for example, only run on glucose. The addition of ketogenic fats probably decreases that amount, at least for the brain, but I don't know by how much.

93f44e8673d3ea2294cce085ebc96e13

(10502)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:43 PM

@Sharon -- http://chriskresser.com/there-is-no-single-cause-of-or-treatment-for-obesity -- we must separate the cause of obesity from the treatment of obesity. Plenty of high-carb eating hunter-gatherer analogs that are not obese. Low-carb for children, probably a really bad idea.

C835934198ffe146cb90eebc22c6b8d8

(844)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:43 PM

Correct. my child eats no bread,pasta,grains or canola or soybean oil. No soy at all. And true we don't know the long term affect it has on kids yet. I am pretty confident her current diet isn't going to cause her to be 300+ lbs as an adult unless she changes her diet herself as she grows and goes out on her own..making bad decisions of what to eat.

A727956fa3f943057c4edb08ad9e864e

(4183)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:41 PM

I agree Travis, I think a conscious effort needs to be made to include carbs in a growing child's diet. Paleo carbs aren't all that emphasised. I myself tend to get bored with potatoes and rice. I don't have this problem with colourful veg, which actually add flavour to a dish.

A727956fa3f943057c4edb08ad9e864e

(4183)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:35 PM

I think for me it's not about 'pushing' low carb per se. But a lot of paleo kids menus end up being accidentally low carb. Not totally ketogenic, but damn near close.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:35 PM

Travis, I get where you're at. I'm perfectly willing to run the experiment on myself, as the problems I've had were sufficiently dreadful (to me) that I'm willing to gamble to resolve them. For others, especially kids, I'm much less certain. I've often wished I had access to more full papers and specifically, the data, on epileptic kids who are on the ketogenic diet. Partly because of my own childhood seizures and subsequent years on phenobarbital, but also to dig into the effects of ketosis on children (and adults). Especially as some of the protocols vary in composition.

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:20 PM

http://ajpendo.physiology.org/content/272/3/E476.short We're all employing gluconeogenesis every day, but ketogenic diets have it churning glucose out constantly at a maximum rate. Ketosis resembles fasting/starvation in a lot of ways. I'm not saying it's going to take years off your life necessarily, I'm simply saying that you probably don't want to run this experiment on a growing child.

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:15 PM

http://submit.clinsci.org/cs/101/0739/cs1010739.htm This one goes into it a bit.

0a2dd50f2d3951bf3fb83fc4638c9512

(1960)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:09 PM

animalcule -- would you mind emailing me? have some q's about BPAL. [email protected]

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:07 PM

Too funny; as soon as I posted my comment I found the full version of the study you linked to: http://jcem.endojournals.org/content/92/11/4480.full

E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:04 PM

@rose "cortisol concentrations increased 5.4% per portion of maternal meat/fish consumption per day" http://jcem.endojournals.org/content/88/8/3554.short

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:04 PM

Rose: Cortisol's primary purpose is to increase BG via gluconeogenesis. That we associate it with "stress" is incidental, though low BG is obviously "perceived" as being stressful to the body. Have you noticed that even the "fat-adapted" zero-carbers still have fasted BG levels in the 80s? You better believe that glucose is there as a result of cortisol and gluconeogenesis (with a dietary protein or muscle substrate). http://jcem.endojournals.org/content/92/11/4480.short

E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on September 18, 2011
at 05:58 PM

i think the biggest thing with modern low carb diets is that they are pretty much an expirement. i personally wouldn't feel that great turning my kids into a science expirement that can possibly have long term health consequences.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 18, 2011
at 05:56 PM

Travis, I can't seem to find anything about ketosis necessarily producing cortisol. There's a little something about cortisol rising just before awakening, and a number of papers about sheep (!), but otherwise, my (probably inadequate) Google-fu nets me nuttin'. Can you point me to some cites on this?

E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on September 18, 2011
at 05:56 PM

her mom didn't get fat from just bread/pasta/sugar, she got fat from highly palatable industrialized foods that are half refined carbs and half soybean oil.

1d0497f8781845ab371b479455bfee8e

(11157)

on September 18, 2011
at 05:50 PM

The only time I think ketogenic diets are recommended for children is if they are epileptic or autistic. Some parents have seen vast improvements in their children's symptoms once switching them to a ketogenic diet. I haven't really seen Paleo parents pushing low-carb onto their kids, but perhaps that's just been my observation.

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 18, 2011
at 05:27 PM

Sharon: Is cortisol no longer considered to be a stress hormone? Is excess ammonia production now a good thing?

03fa485bfd54734522755f47a5e6597e

(3944)

on September 18, 2011
at 05:14 PM

Yes, kids can burn a lot of carbs and show no ill effects. But can we be sure they aren't doing damage that won't show up until the future? Could that be the case with bad carbs like sugar, but not with starches from whole foods? My niece, at 18, is thin and energetic and looks as healthy as can be. If you see a picture of her mother at 18, she looked exactly the same--and now at 38 she's 300+ pounds. Was all the extra weight caused by her adult diet, or could the groundwork for the weight gain have been laid by all the pasta/bread/sugar we had as kids? I don't think anyone knows yet. For

03fa485bfd54734522755f47a5e6597e

(3944)

on September 18, 2011
at 05:13 PM

Yes, kids can burn a lot of carbs and show no ill effects. But can we be sure they aren't doing damage that won't show up until the future? Could that be the case with bad carbs like sugar, but not with starches from whole foods? My niece, at 18, is thin and energetic and looks as healthy as can be. If you see a picture of her mother at 18, she looked exactly the same--and now at 38 she's 300+ pounds. Was all the extra weight was caused by her adult diet, or could the groundwork for the weight gain have been laid by all the pasta/bread/sugar we had as kids? I don't think anyone knows yet.

A0e3b5eeb45b7d6e5689847fbc79959a

(327)

on September 18, 2011
at 04:23 PM

what is the constant stress of gluconeogenesis? what reference do have to support that this process is stressful to the body? i respectfully disagree.

A727956fa3f943057c4edb08ad9e864e

(4183)

on September 18, 2011
at 04:14 PM

If you are lean its really tough to get enough cals on low carb. That's why it's such an effective weight loss diet, it drops appetite like a stone for a lot of people (though not all). Constant ketosis isn't really preferable, mostly due to the constant stress of gluconeogeneis. Transient ketosis = good. Constant ketosis = ?? I don't know about you but I wouldn't like to use a child to answer that question.

A727956fa3f943057c4edb08ad9e864e

(4183)

on September 18, 2011
at 03:42 PM

Oh god, I made that mistake once when taking my niece out for the day. I was playing the doting aunt so got her as much sweets as she wanted, boy was I sorry to be dealing with the quasi-bipolar, hyperactive result. On that basis I was thinking more along the lines of starch rather than refined sugar!

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19 Answers

12
26b7615ef542394102785a67a2786867

on September 18, 2011
at 03:50 PM

No, I don't think low-carb is optimal for children. And yes, it seems a lot of people round here feed their kids (and babies and toddlers - despite the fact that breast milk is mostly carbohydrate) this way, and it does make me raise an eyebrow. I really want kids and plan to raise them 'paleo', but they will be eating plenty of carbs from whole foods.

I can't help but compare a child's metabolism to my own (I do look like I'm 12!) - I'm very thin, lean, active, and need to eat prodigious amounts of calories to fuel my normal metabolism, much less put some meat on my bones. I do not feel well in ketosis, at all. While ketosis is highly useful for fat loss and for managing some health conditions, I consider it to fundamentally be a strain on the body. A growing child can only benefit from easily accessible, adequate glucose IMO.

I'm also determined not to be the food police - my mom was and it was terrible. I'm not going to buy junk, but they can eat junk at other people's houses and participate fully in Halloween and birthday parties. Hopefully they will realize, as I did, that eating crappy food makes them feel crappy, and thus be motivated to keep eating the way we did at home as they gain independence.

0a2dd50f2d3951bf3fb83fc4638c9512

(1960)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:09 PM

animalcule -- would you mind emailing me? have some q's about BPAL. [email protected]

6
Medium avatar

on September 18, 2011
at 05:42 PM

I think the safest approach is to give them plenty of fruit and starchy tubers (obviously alongside meat and organs) and then get them to play outside as much as possible. Play outside with them, go on long walks etc. There's simply no way that a rapidly growing, active kid is going to get fat from eating healthy carbohydrates.

I'm sure I'm not the only one here who shudders when they think about the amount of crap they ate as a kid while remaining inexplicably lean. I spent the vast majority of my time outside (causing trouble of one sort or another, truth be told).

My biggest concern would be in putting glucose restrictions on a growing brain. I can't fathom how that would turn out well.

A727956fa3f943057c4edb08ad9e864e

(4183)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:41 PM

I agree Travis, I think a conscious effort needs to be made to include carbs in a growing child's diet. Paleo carbs aren't all that emphasised. I myself tend to get bored with potatoes and rice. I don't have this problem with colourful veg, which actually add flavour to a dish.

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 19, 2011
at 04:33 PM

The brain does not grow optimally in a real or simulated starvation state.

149af6e19a06675614dfbb6838a7d7c0

(3202)

on September 19, 2011
at 03:33 PM

Why would you think a "growing " brain needs glucose to grow? A growing brain needs lots of fat and cholesterol to grow. The problem with kids is that their parents have restricted fats and thus increased the carb grams to make up for the deficit in energy. See low fat/no fat milk in homes and schools ad. nauseum. Teach your kid why high carb diets are bad. Sorry, we don't live in an environment where kids have access to whole food carb sources (tubers, low glycemic fruits etc..) without an abundance of easy to get high processed crap. Teach them why, teach them how and be an example.

149af6e19a06675614dfbb6838a7d7c0

(3202)

on September 19, 2011
at 07:37 PM

Eating lote of fat and cholesterol does not mean starvation. Glucose does not repair or build the brain. It is built with fat, cholesterol and a little protein. How would suppling glucose build the brain. If anything, glucose slows healing and body repair.

26b7615ef542394102785a67a2786867

(7967)

on September 25, 2011
at 12:32 AM

My brain doesn't work without glucose. YMMV.

4
Ca1150430b1904659742ce2cad621c7d

(12540)

on September 18, 2011
at 04:24 PM

I think that the answer is "depends on the child" -- just like adults, kids have different metabolisms and different energy needs. I think that feeding kids in paleo style (starting with breast-feeding until the child self-weans, then moving to plenty of locally-produced, grass-fed or forage-fed meats, leafy and colorful vegetables, roots, nuts, seeds, berries, fruits, etc.) is really healthy for them -- however I think that it is important to keep plenty of foods available for kids to eat as their hunger demands -- and to accept that, when they're outside the house, they're probably going to try other things that their friends are eating, just because that's what kids do.

I also think that it's important not to have -food- become a battle zone. There are so many other issues that we need to stay on top of as parents... I know there were with the four that I raised... and I think that if we raise our kids with the right foods, and the reasoning behind them, our kids will never have to worry about whether they're "high carb", "low fat", "high protein", "low carb" or whatever label -- they'll be fine choosing whole foods, preparing them in healthy ways, and enjoying the opportunity to nourish their bodies -- and they'll have the resilience to handle the occasional foray into less-than- healthy foods without it sending their bodies completely off-track as it does for so many of us who have been eating in ways that are unsustainable for us for large portions of our lives.

E4dd16dec3c8a37b1d3fa2ad60bc66ea

(283)

on September 18, 2011
at 07:56 PM

I agree! I grew up in a "food battle" household. Our menu in any given week was sponsored by "on weight watchers" or "off weight watchers". Weight watchers meals were things like steamed veggies, dry baked potatoes and broiled chicken. Of weight watchers was things like Hamburger helper (oh goodness, MOM! what were you doing to us?) and spaghetti and hot dogs/grilled cheeses/etc. I personally think they eat what they eat (with my supervision). Sometimes it's 6 string cheeses or 5 slices of bacon or 3 servings of yogurt. It all balances out. As long as I keep the artificial stuff out, I'm good.

E4dd16dec3c8a37b1d3fa2ad60bc66ea

(283)

on September 18, 2011
at 07:57 PM

I forgot to add that growing up in that household ALL 3 of us kids ended up with various forms of food addictions/weight battles.

4
A0e3b5eeb45b7d6e5689847fbc79959a

on September 18, 2011
at 04:10 PM

a low carb diet provides plenty of energy and calories as long as you are eating enough, especially important is eating sufficient calories from animal fat. ketosis - or fat burning metabolism - is preferable over glucose burning metabolism when it comes to preventing disease, why would that not be optimal for kids?

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:20 PM

http://ajpendo.physiology.org/content/272/3/E476.short We're all employing gluconeogenesis every day, but ketogenic diets have it churning glucose out constantly at a maximum rate. Ketosis resembles fasting/starvation in a lot of ways. I'm not saying it's going to take years off your life necessarily, I'm simply saying that you probably don't want to run this experiment on a growing child.

A727956fa3f943057c4edb08ad9e864e

(4183)

on September 18, 2011
at 04:14 PM

If you are lean its really tough to get enough cals on low carb. That's why it's such an effective weight loss diet, it drops appetite like a stone for a lot of people (though not all). Constant ketosis isn't really preferable, mostly due to the constant stress of gluconeogeneis. Transient ketosis = good. Constant ketosis = ?? I don't know about you but I wouldn't like to use a child to answer that question.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 18, 2011
at 05:56 PM

Travis, I can't seem to find anything about ketosis necessarily producing cortisol. There's a little something about cortisol rising just before awakening, and a number of papers about sheep (!), but otherwise, my (probably inadequate) Google-fu nets me nuttin'. Can you point me to some cites on this?

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 18, 2011
at 09:29 PM

However, I'm quite interested in "Dietary Macronutrient Content Alters Cortisol Metabolism Independently of Body Weight Changes in Obese Men". This is quite interesting.

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:04 PM

Rose: Cortisol's primary purpose is to increase BG via gluconeogenesis. That we associate it with "stress" is incidental, though low BG is obviously "perceived" as being stressful to the body. Have you noticed that even the "fat-adapted" zero-carbers still have fasted BG levels in the 80s? You better believe that glucose is there as a result of cortisol and gluconeogenesis (with a dietary protein or muscle substrate). http://jcem.endojournals.org/content/92/11/4480.short

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 18, 2011
at 09:54 PM

-- that it may be, but in at least one case (mine), it seems to also be a prophylactic against autoimmunity. I'm not extending this case to anyone else, but it does support my general inclination to not make hard and fast conclusions about whether a particular, individual biochemical action observed in the lab is bad or good. Ultimately health or illness is determined by what happens in the entire body, and while reductionism has its uses, and is sometimes the whole story, it more often is not. Or put another way, the body generally knows what it's doing.

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 18, 2011
at 05:27 PM

Sharon: Is cortisol no longer considered to be a stress hormone? Is excess ammonia production now a good thing?

E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:04 PM

@rose "cortisol concentrations increased 5.4% per portion of maternal meat/fish consumption per day" http://jcem.endojournals.org/content/88/8/3554.short

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 18, 2011
at 09:33 PM

But actually, what stands out to me about that, is that it seems to be saying that cortisol use is more efficient on a LCHF diet. In fact, people with adrenal issues are urged to use things like licorice root, because it induces better recycling of cortisol, keeping it in the bloodstream longer, and therefore putting less stress on the adrenal glands.

E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on September 18, 2011
at 05:58 PM

i think the biggest thing with modern low carb diets is that they are pretty much an expirement. i personally wouldn't feel that great turning my kids into a science expirement that can possibly have long term health consequences.

93f44e8673d3ea2294cce085ebc96e13

(10502)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:43 PM

@Sharon -- http://chriskresser.com/there-is-no-single-cause-of-or-treatment-for-obesity -- we must separate the cause of obesity from the treatment of obesity. Plenty of high-carb eating hunter-gatherer analogs that are not obese. Low-carb for children, probably a really bad idea.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 18, 2011
at 09:29 PM

However, I'm quite interested in "Dietary Macronutrient Content Alters Cortisol Metabolism Independently of Body Weight Changes in Obese Men".

A0e3b5eeb45b7d6e5689847fbc79959a

(327)

on September 18, 2011
at 04:23 PM

what is the constant stress of gluconeogenesis? what reference do have to support that this process is stressful to the body? i respectfully disagree.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 18, 2011
at 10:55 PM

Hmm. Agnostic is not the right word. I have an opinion, since I have children and have had to make decisions about it. But I'm not arguing about that in this thread.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 18, 2011
at 09:28 PM

I'm also skeptical of "Maternal Consumption of a High-Meat, Low-Carbohydrate Diet in Late Pregnancy: Relation to Adult Cortisol Concentrations in the Offspring", simply because the chances are that any mother who was put on a low carb diet probably had metabolic issues to pass on anyway.

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:15 PM

http://submit.clinsci.org/cs/101/0739/cs1010739.htm This one goes into it a bit.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:07 PM

Too funny; as soon as I posted my comment I found the full version of the study you linked to: http://jcem.endojournals.org/content/92/11/4480.full

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 18, 2011
at 10:44 PM

I'm somewhat agnostic on the issue of children and carbs. I'm just responding to the posts about ketosis, stress, and cortisol.

3b7e6c77a5412587152c9e3f22b41c2a

(434)

on September 19, 2011
at 03:44 AM

The topic of "Why Do People Consider Ketosis Stressful to the Body" has previously been asked and answered here: http://paleohacks.com/questions/25449/why-do-people-consider-ketosis-stressful-to-the-body My take-away from that thread was that there isn't any really compelling reason to consider ketosis to be more stressful to the body than non-ketosis. There may be some suggestive evidence that it is more stressful and some suggestive evidence that it is just fine, but really nothing to worry about, as far as I remember.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 18, 2011
at 09:51 PM

Hee; this comment thread's spinning out of control. I've spent the last hour combing through this paper ("Obese Men") and trying to learn enough corisol chemistry to get what it's saying. Along the google path, I've learned that cortisol suppresses the immune system. With a fasting BG of 90, I'm sure I've got lots of cortisol. This is an excellent thing, though, as it provides the first real glimmer of understanding for me of why an ultra-ketogenic (ZC) diet provides immediate relief of joint pain/RA symptoms. So to answer Travis's question about cortisol being a stress hormone --

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:35 PM

Travis, I get where you're at. I'm perfectly willing to run the experiment on myself, as the problems I've had were sufficiently dreadful (to me) that I'm willing to gamble to resolve them. For others, especially kids, I'm much less certain. I've often wished I had access to more full papers and specifically, the data, on epileptic kids who are on the ketogenic diet. Partly because of my own childhood seizures and subsequent years on phenobarbital, but also to dig into the effects of ketosis on children (and adults). Especially as some of the protocols vary in composition.

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:50 PM

Good point, Patrik. Rose: A fun fact I just saw in this biochem textbook that may interest you is that during the 40th day of starvation, the brain still uses 40g of glucose per day, and the rest of the body uses another 40g. Red blood cells, for example, only run on glucose. The addition of ketogenic fats probably decreases that amount, at least for the brain, but I don't know by how much.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 18, 2011
at 10:02 PM

And of course, that's making the assumption that I am indeed producing cortisol *as a result of* my ketogenic diet, which as Ambimorph points out, is hardly a settled case.

485bcefe7f1f7a6df1a293a826bf6137

(2191)

on September 19, 2011
at 01:24 PM

Not to beat a dead horse, but ketosis is the result of the breakdown of fat. Cortisol inhibits that process. So high cortisol during ketosis is unlikely. Last time I checked, VLCers (myself included) had lower incidences of infections, colds, etc, so if cortisol suppresses the immune system, it's unlikely to be high during ketosis. And to Rose, the reduction the symptoms of RA is not a result of a suppressed immune system--it's a result of reduced inflammation.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 18, 2011
at 09:44 PM

According to the authors, obese men had abnormally increased clearance of cortisol, impaired regeneration of cortisol, and correspondingly increased production of cortisol, and the low carb diet corrected these abnormalities.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 18, 2011
at 09:25 PM

Re the studies: The fact that cortisol increases gluconeogenesis is totally irrelevant here. That's like saying that the fact that high caffeine intake makes you more alert means that anything making you alert increases your caffeine intake. So I don't see the relevance of "Cortisol increases gluconeogenesis in humans: its role in the metabolic syndrome" (continued)

Medium avatar

(39831)

on September 18, 2011
at 10:34 PM

I've come around with regard to the diets that you guys eat and am willing to agree that in your cases, the theoretical risks are outweighed by the tangible benefits, *however* in the context of the topic at hand, I would not accept that those theoretical risks are outweighed by the theoretical benefits it may give to (what was) a healthy, growing child.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on September 19, 2011
at 03:37 PM

Thanks, Mr. T; inflammation is always my first suspect. But I don't know by what mechanism, it's just a theory, whereas the cortisol idea seemed more concrete. And my experience since going VLC/ZC is certainly that I'm never sick, but I haven't seen numbers for other people. I'd be interested in anything published on LC/VLC and infections, colds, etc.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on September 18, 2011
at 09:34 PM

Therefore, this study seems to me to be proving that a LCHF diet is actually reducing adrenal stress. I'm not a biochemist, though, so help in interpretation would be welcome.

149af6e19a06675614dfbb6838a7d7c0

(3202)

on September 19, 2011
at 08:02 PM

Cliff says "i think the biggest thing with modern low carb diets is that they are pretty much an expirement." The experiment is the high carb diet for the last 100 years. We evolved eating less refined carb than we do. In a perfect world, all carbs are less refined and grow under the ground or on trees. This is not a perfect world. Plus, the minute you chew a carb, however unprocessed, you are processing it. Point is, sugar is the problem for disease and ageing. Whether you eat it or it is converted from another carb source, the damage is done as if it were sugar.

4
0dbd7154d909b97fe774d1655754f195

(16131)

on September 18, 2011
at 04:02 PM

With two young boys (5 and 21 months) it is my experience that they are capable of making energy from their food like IMMEDIATELY after eating. They dance and jump around constantly. With such high energy output there is not way I could justify giving my kids a low carb diet.

Neither of my kids eat potato, and I try not to do the bread/noodles type stuff (but I do give them rice noodles). Instead my boys really like to eat lots of fruit with their meals.

I guess if my kids had brain issues like epilepsy then I would consider a therapeutic diet like a ketogenic one.

3
78972387772c994caa78513a83978437

on September 19, 2011
at 12:34 AM

Can we define 'low-carb' in this thread? I am really surprised to see everyone say "ooooooh kids eating the way we eat is bad!" Are you all assuming that these children are only eating meat? How many carbs are you assuming are safe? Did I correctly read an answer that said children should be eating rice and Corn? Am I in the right place?

If you claim that eating 'paleo' was the way that our ancestors ate, how will you account for what our ancestor's children ate? I plan for my children to eat what my husband and I eat- lots of meat, lots of vegetables (including more starchy veg like squash) and fruit in small increments. Will my kids be in ketosis? No, but then again, I'm usually not to begin with. If my own parents fed me this way, I'm sure I would have grown up without the allergies, joint pain, and fluctuating weight that I experienced through late childhood and early adolescence.

E639bc85fd42430285596434a6515ad5

(2226)

on September 19, 2011
at 03:23 AM

Our paleolithic ancestors' children did not generally eat low-carb, so I think it's a good sign that everybody is answering "no" in this thread. Starches and fruit were plentiful in the equatorial tropics where most of human evolution occurred.

A727956fa3f943057c4edb08ad9e864e

(4183)

on September 19, 2011
at 05:56 PM

Pricilla, I would define low carb as less than 30% of calories from carbohydrate.

3
24df4e0d0e7ce98963d4641fae1a60e5

on September 18, 2011
at 11:35 PM

No. Neither should Mom's to be.

I'm sure my negs will spike for saying this, but it needs to be said.

The whole starvation in childhood --> adult obesity and/or diabetes? Very real. Why? Well we can test this in animals and it all flows. Calorie, protein, carb restriction in developing years leads to depressed basal energy expenditure and an apparent lack of development of appropriate protective fat stores.

Carb restriction metabolically is the same as starvation. I'll be more than happy to provide cites for that proclamation as time permits.

Mommas eat starch ... I beg you!

A727956fa3f943057c4edb08ad9e864e

(4183)

on September 19, 2011
at 05:36 PM

I like civil carbsane, more of this please.

7d0c3ea9bf8be00b93e6433d8f125ac3

(7540)

on September 19, 2011
at 04:12 AM

Want to upvote this multiple times.

3
E4dd16dec3c8a37b1d3fa2ad60bc66ea

on September 18, 2011
at 07:39 PM

I'd like to note that I think where they get their carbs from is something to talk about. Our dentist went over some of this stuff with us. Breads/crackers/pretzels, etc are really bad for your teeth. Because they tend to stick more, causing decay. When my 4 year old was diagnosed with 6!!! cavities.. we had to overhaul her diet. A diet, I might add, that already did NOT include regular candy, sweets, juice, etc and NO soda whatsoever. We were told to cut WAY back on those processed refined grains.

So while we do still have those things for them occasionally, they get the majority of their carbs from veggies and fruits. Definitely MORE than 100 grams a day though.

Since we cut way back on that stuff, she's had no more cavities AND my younger daughter has had NONE at all. Not a huge argument for or against the low-carb for kids thing.. but definitely something to think about.

A727956fa3f943057c4edb08ad9e864e

(4183)

on September 18, 2011
at 08:04 PM

Awesome, I wish my mom was paleo growing up, I might have been able to avoid years of cavities and expensive dentistry, well done!

2
Dc6407193ba441d1438f6f0c06af872b

on September 20, 2011
at 03:56 AM

From inuits (very low carb) to kitavans (very high carb), kids and adults thrive on real food. Don't worry about it.

2
Fdce058480fb50b092f3ed975c94a2f0

on September 18, 2011
at 09:27 PM

I see it this way. If you train your kids to eat high carb, then that's the way they will eat as adults too. If you train them to eat low carb, then they are less likely to go high carb and get the diabetes. You naturally resist any change from what you were taught as a child because it is engrained into your mind.

25f653d9c2581edbafbaabe468bae550

(95)

on September 19, 2011
at 12:00 PM

Amen! Every bite is building their bodies. The nutrition you give your child, determines their future health. Focus on nutrient dense foods. Teach nutrition and healthy living. You give them the best of everything else, so give them the best nutrition.

B999e22df9b9ec64daea50bedefabfe5

(10)

on February 06, 2012
at 01:24 AM

But were you " trained" to eat Paleo? I think most people try to eat in a more healthy way as adults than they may have as kids. The problem is conflicting " advice" on what is healthy. I had friends in the 90's who thought it was OK to down a box of snack well cookies because they were " low fat".

2
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:00 PM

I think that kids should eat low wheat. Ideally, carbs to use are banana, potato, corn, rice, chestnut paste (personal opinion)

I doubt high glycemic foods are bad for kids since they will burn it ASAP. So toxic CHOs should be avoided only.

Also, sugar may be good idea cus it attenuates pain so its OK to use it with tooth growth or injections [we know that it affects opiate pathways]

78972387772c994caa78513a83978437

(2290)

on September 19, 2011
at 12:33 AM

I'm sorry I don't follow... how is sugar a good idea in a child's diet?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on September 19, 2011
at 08:04 AM

I said it MAY be good idea in specific situations, like when it hurts ! It attenuates pain. Also, kids are very active, they will just burn it, its not a problem generally.

B999e22df9b9ec64daea50bedefabfe5

(10)

on February 06, 2012
at 12:59 AM

Some hospitals give a few drops of sugar water to baby boys immediately post circumcision. They startle, and seem to ' forget' about the circa whilst trying to figure out the sweet taste. Just thought it was interesting. I saw it done - it worked.

2
F1b82cc7e6d90384ad30007dd6c1b9e3

(1187)

on September 18, 2011
at 04:16 PM

Dr. Lutz has a photo of an overweight adolescent boy who was not reaching puberty milestones. In a second photo after 2 years low carb, he lost the weight, reached puberty, and developed muscle tone. (See his book: Life Without Bread)

Kids are picky eaters. Their weight must be monitored. They are exposed to school lunches (a joke) and class movie days, parties, etc. Avoid high fructose corn syrup. Carb addiction is real and begins in childhood. Parents have to decide what is an acceptable balance.

25f653d9c2581edbafbaabe468bae550

(95)

on September 19, 2011
at 11:53 AM

Being a picky eater may save their life one day. Help them learn to "pick" the best, most nutrient dense food. REAL food won't taste good to them if they eat processed crap all the time. Try adding healthy fats with their carbs, so they don't over consume them. Have fun collecting Halloween candy, then "buy" it from them for lots of cash and maybe an organic dark chocolate bar. Make their nutrition count. Give them the purest, most nutrient dense food you can. If they're properly nourished, consuming too many carbs and excess weight won't be an issue.

2
5b69a02dadcae753771921d913909215

(1457)

on September 18, 2011
at 03:42 PM

If they aren't metabolically screwed up yet, give them what they crave most from healthy fare. If they are fat, then you should get the carbs in the range that they actually use for energy and stop before it becomes excessive and used for fat storage. I think if you look at most SAD kids nowadays they must be getting like 2000 calories from carbs alone. If your kids are paleo and want some sweet potatoes or rice... its not really the same as having 70+% of the meal be carbs and then having it with a sugary drink and 99% carb snacks in between.

1
A5d1f5d9be69161f68605cc477b57b1d

on April 11, 2013
at 02:17 PM

I have three kids and my approach has always been giving them a balanced diet of meat,veggies,fruit,dairy and carbs with plenty of outside activity. I can only speak for my kids but I feel all of these things in reasonable portions work well for them, They are growing at a rapid pace and need all those things for energy and strength. Carbs are essential for kids, for adults not as much.But whatever you do with your child's diet is your own business, I can only speak from my experience and what works for my kids.

1
1da74185531d6d4c7182fb9ee417f97f

on September 19, 2011
at 05:30 PM

My kid by default doesn't eat low carb because he's still nursing but his solid food choices are decidedly low carb. If it ain't meat, offal, fat, highfat dairy, or veggies swimming in fat he just doesn't go for it. I offer some sweet potato a few times a week and he never eats more than a taste. He does, like some fruit like bananas, though which I never hold out on him.

I think instead of obsessing over macros we should just trust young children to tell us what they need. Sure if their palates have been destroyed with NAD's and artificial flavors then you might need to be more careful, but my child just naturally gravitates towards the more savory foods. Maybe it's because that's what I eat and he tastes it in the breast milk.

1da74185531d6d4c7182fb9ee417f97f

(10904)

on September 19, 2011
at 07:35 PM

He'll eat it with a bunch of butter or sour cream but he doesn't seem too entralled. I'm not pushing too much starch on him yet because babies don't really make the enzymes to break them down yet.

A727956fa3f943057c4edb08ad9e864e

(4183)

on September 19, 2011
at 07:05 PM

How does he feel about white potato? I bloody hate sweet potato, so sickly sweet to me.

1
580fe8c977ff4794ba16fc0f6a7e7c19

on September 19, 2011
at 05:00 PM

I think it's important to set the distinction between carbs and wheat/grains. A "functional" paleo diet (see gnolls.org) does not set limitation of the consumption of starchy vegetables (sunchokes, potatoes, sweet potatoes). But no matter your belief on carbs, no one should be eating poisonous grains, wheats, seeds, and the products that contain them.

So a sweet potato, potatoes fried in duck fat, the occasional piece of whole fruit (not fruit juice, or dehydrated/dried fruit), no problem.

But if "not eating low carb" means you're still feeding your child processed foods, cereals, and bread, you should re-evaluate your stance on the paleo diet as that is decidedly un-paleo.

I'll agree that a child's metabolism is different than that of an adult's, but why not look at in terms of how much food you're eating of the same macronutrient profile? If you look at it from a paleolithic standpoint, it's not as if the children ate completely different diets than the rest of the tribe. Once past the age of breastfeeding, children would eat the same thing the rest of their tribe was consuming.

I think it's important to give your kids enough credit and allow them to thrive on the same foods you choose to eat. Otherwise, in addition to possibly negative health effects, you may be setting them up with bad eating habits.

1
93ae9f2d376e5426e891a9b58d8302fa

(2936)

on September 18, 2011
at 03:38 PM

Something from a recent Melissa blog comes to mind. She said the !Kung (or somebody) detest sweets, but their kids, being kids, love sweets. So whenever there's something sweet on the menu, they give it to the kids.

Sounds like a plan. Keep your household sugar-free, but whenever unplanned candy comes your way, let the kids pig out. Just be ready with the handyman tools to repair all the damage those little hyper whirlwinds do.

E4dd16dec3c8a37b1d3fa2ad60bc66ea

(283)

on September 18, 2011
at 07:52 PM

I think this is where my thoughts lie. I don't ever keep sweets in the house.. but when we go to grandmas or when Halloween rolls around... they get it. When we go to the movies they each get a small treat (from the store, not the jumbo sized boxes at the theaters!).

A727956fa3f943057c4edb08ad9e864e

(4183)

on September 18, 2011
at 03:42 PM

Oh god, I made that mistake once when taking my niece out for the day. I was playing the doting aunt so got her as much sweets as she wanted, boy was I sorry to be dealing with the quasi-bipolar, hyperactive result. On that basis I was thinking more along the lines of starch rather than refined sugar!

B999e22df9b9ec64daea50bedefabfe5

(10)

on February 06, 2012
at 01:20 AM

I have what we call a " junk drawer" , and real junk - rice crispy treats and the occasional fruit roll up are mixed in with sunflower seeds, dried fruit, beef jerky, fruit and nut bars, and Graham crackers. My son is sunflower seeds and beef jerky, older daughter may eat the occasional dried mango, and the baby (4) is all about the rice krispy treats. Her favorite snacks, tho are string cheese, peanut butter spoons, and raw veggies. I don't sweat it. She eats maybe one RK treat a week, but it is there.

0
580fe8c977ff4794ba16fc0f6a7e7c19

on September 19, 2011
at 05:04 PM

I think it's important to set the distinction between carbs and wheat/grains. A "functional" paleo diet (see gnolls.org) does not set limitation of the consumption of starchy vegetables (sunchokes, potatoes, sweet potatoes). But no matter your belief on carbs, no one should be eating poisonous grains, wheats, seeds, and the products that contain them.

So a sweet potato, potatoes fried in duck fat, the occasional piece of whole fruit (not fruit juice, or dehydrated/dried fruit), no problem.

But if "not eating low carb" means you're still feeding your child processed foods, cereals, and bread, you should re-evaluate your stance on the paleo diet as that is decidedly un-paleo.

I'll agree that a child's metabolism is different than that of an adult's, but why not look at in terms of how much food you're eating of the same macronutrient profile? If you look at it from a paleolithic standpoint, it's not as if the children ate completely different diets than the rest of the tribe. Once past the age of breastfeeding, children would eat the same thing the rest of their tribe was consuming.

I think it's important to give your kids enough credit and allow them to thrive on the same foods you choose to eat. Otherwise, in addition to possibly negative health effects, you may be setting them up with bad eating habits.

0
C835934198ffe146cb90eebc22c6b8d8

on September 18, 2011
at 04:32 PM

Im not sure low carb is the answer for kids. I think kids can handle the carbs to burn in a healthy form. Stuff like sweet potatoes, and other various veggies. Obviously you won't be feeding them wheat. I find when my kiddo, who is three, eats sugar in any form she gets a really bad attitude and cries at the drop of a hat over the littlest thing. She survives mostly on bacon hehe. She does get milk and milk products like yogurt, kefir, the occasional ice cream treat, and cheese. We have a hard time getting her to try new things at this stage in her life but we are working on it. In the mean time what she gets now seems to be working for her. She has endless energy without eating a ton of sugar and starchy carbs and doesn't get hungry all the time. She has a perfect body ratio for her. She is super strong and smart..I like to think the way she eats has something to do with that. But this is only experience on our end.

E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on September 18, 2011
at 05:56 PM

her mom didn't get fat from just bread/pasta/sugar, she got fat from highly palatable industrialized foods that are half refined carbs and half soybean oil.

03fa485bfd54734522755f47a5e6597e

(3944)

on September 18, 2011
at 05:14 PM

Yes, kids can burn a lot of carbs and show no ill effects. But can we be sure they aren't doing damage that won't show up until the future? Could that be the case with bad carbs like sugar, but not with starches from whole foods? My niece, at 18, is thin and energetic and looks as healthy as can be. If you see a picture of her mother at 18, she looked exactly the same--and now at 38 she's 300+ pounds. Was all the extra weight caused by her adult diet, or could the groundwork for the weight gain have been laid by all the pasta/bread/sugar we had as kids? I don't think anyone knows yet. For

03fa485bfd54734522755f47a5e6597e

(3944)

on September 18, 2011
at 05:13 PM

Yes, kids can burn a lot of carbs and show no ill effects. But can we be sure they aren't doing damage that won't show up until the future? Could that be the case with bad carbs like sugar, but not with starches from whole foods? My niece, at 18, is thin and energetic and looks as healthy as can be. If you see a picture of her mother at 18, she looked exactly the same--and now at 38 she's 300+ pounds. Was all the extra weight was caused by her adult diet, or could the groundwork for the weight gain have been laid by all the pasta/bread/sugar we had as kids? I don't think anyone knows yet.

C835934198ffe146cb90eebc22c6b8d8

(844)

on September 18, 2011
at 06:43 PM

Correct. my child eats no bread,pasta,grains or canola or soybean oil. No soy at all. And true we don't know the long term affect it has on kids yet. I am pretty confident her current diet isn't going to cause her to be 300+ lbs as an adult unless she changes her diet herself as she grows and goes out on her own..making bad decisions of what to eat.

B999e22df9b9ec64daea50bedefabfe5

(10)

on February 06, 2012
at 01:28 AM

I lived in Japan for quite awhile, and if white rice and soy make people fat, then they must be hiding them somewhere.

C835934198ffe146cb90eebc22c6b8d8

(844)

on February 06, 2012
at 09:07 PM

Keto-jen I never said soy makes you fat. It doesn't help though if whatever you are eating is fried in soybean oil. Soy has other issues though. And some people do fine with white rice...others don't. I only said MY child seems to do better without refined carbs, sugar and soy.

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