Thursday, January 20, 2011

Iron and Chocolate

I've become a bit of an expert on that fabulously important mineral, Iron. My daughter has a severe Iron deficiency complicated by a feeding delay. It becomes a bit of a crisis when her Iron levels are low and there is no chance she'll consume anything containing Iron. Ferrous Sulfate is sold in a liquid form as a supplement, but tastes terrible and can stain teeth. So what to do? Anemia can cause many very harmful and lasting effects if left untreated. 

Cognitive Deficits

My poor girl has all four of these symptoms...and some! She is almost four and still takes a three hour nap every day only to wake up cranky and irritable until she can retreat to her bed a few hours later. She is tired most of the day and is delayed in other areas. 

For a child who is anemic, taking a multivitamin like Flintstones with Iron can help maintain good levels, but isn't necessarily going to rescue her levels from the deep cavern where they currently remain. She has decided Flintstones tastes okay and she is consuming one daily with breakfast. That's 85% of her daily recommended dose of Iron. As stated, this is great, but not going to cure her of a severe deficiency.

Ferrous Sulfate drops would be an obvious fix. Unfortunately, she has medical, as well as psychological issues with eating. Forcing her to take rancid tasting drops several times a day would definitely set her back and further delay her eating a balanced diet which is the real goal. Luckily, her pediatrician understands this. So we have the drops, but the plan...don't let her know we have the drops. I'm now going to find ways to hide them in her food. 

This morning, we headed to Starbucks. I slipped a dropper full into her hot chocolate. Success!

This afternoon, half a dropper into some chocolate flavored pediasure. More success!

Tonight, dropper full into her regular milk. No go! (My husband's idea. I knew it wouldn't work, but you to let him have his try at it.)

Tomorrow morning, I'll be mixing a little with her peanut butter before I spread it on toast. 

And we'll just do this step by step...and with lots of chocolate!


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