Nicklaus Children’s Hospital Food and Nutrition Services Department offers nutritional consultations at our outpatient centers. Our goal is to maintain and improve your child’s nutritional health.
Nutrition consultations are available for children from infancy through adolescence. We offer outpatient assessments and counseling with referrals from your child’s pediatrician or specialty physician.
Nutrition Issues in Children
Registered dietitians from the Clinical Nutrition Department provide in-depth nutrition assessment and counseling to help with a variety of nutrition issues in children including:
- Cardiovascular disease, hypertension, elevated blood cholesterol
- High cholesterol
- Picky eating and inadequate nutrition
- Nutrient deficiencies
Children with Food Allergies
For children that suffer from food allergies or intolerances, the RD will teach them and the parent how to read food labels. Learning about food labels will help you know which ingredients to avoid and will help you to find substitutions to keep your child’s diet balanced and tasty.
Weight Management for Children
If your child has been struggling with weight gain, the RD will work with you to make sure your child gets enough of all the key nutrients. The RD can also suggest high-calorie, high protein meal plans and products that will help your child thrive.
Children on Nutrition Support
If your child is on nutrition support, the RD will come up with the right feeding regimen according to your child’s special nutritional needs, while helping you make your child feel included.
If the family time involves sharing meals, this can make a child on nutrition support feel left out. The RD knows that and they will help you come up with ideas of family rituals and family time around activities that do not involve meals or food.
Support for Children with Chronic Conditions
If your child suffers from a chronic condition, the RD will help you understand the condition and provide education to help you create a meal plan that includes all the important nutrients to manage this condition.
- Sports Nutrition Counseling
- Tube Feeding
- Weight management
- Vegetarian/vegan diets
What should I expect during my visit?
During your initial visit, the Registered Dietitian (RD) will attentively listen about your child’s eating habits, food preferences, family dynamics and dietary restrictions. The RD will obtain an eating history, body measurements and will review medical information from the child’s primary physician.
During this visit the Registered Dietitian (RD) will provide you with specific information and may also use some materials such as measuring cups, food models or food label reading to demonstrate you and your child important concepts related to nutrition.
As part of the consultation, the RD will also use creative strategies to help with meal planning, grocery shopping, food journaling and mindful eating. She/he will also be able to suggest some reliable websites, social media channels and apps that can be used as tools to help you reach your child’s nutrition and health goals.
After learning about your child’s health history, favorite foods, eating and exercise habits, and some of the family dynamics, the dietitian will help you as a family set goals and prioritize. Therefore the patient and family will work together with the RD to develop a safe, effective and individualized nutrition plan that will suit your child’s specific needs.
Follow-up visits will focus on maintenance and monitoring of the progress your child has made. Keep in mind that every follow up visit is a new opportunity to review or learn new things regarding your child’s health and nutrition.
Initial appointments last about an hour, and follow-up visits can be scheduled to monitor progress and adjust treatment plans, this typically last a little less than the initial appointment.
Counseling is available in English and Spanish. Our services require a referral from a pediatrician.