Pediatric nutritional care in Indianapolis
Proper nutrition and healthy eating is important for all children. Some conditions, such as failure to thrive, require children to have a specialized diet and supplement plan to help them grow. That’s why pediatric registered dietitians are part of our multispecialty care teams at Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital at Ascension St. Vincent in Indianapolis. Our pediatric dietitians specialize in nutrition plans for children with enteral feedings (using a feeding tube), growth disorders and other chronic conditions. We work with specialists in neonatology, gastroenterology, cancer care, endocrinology and nephrology, neurology, critical care and more. When your child is in the hospital, we work closely with their doctor to deliver nutritional care that supports their recovery. With a doctor’s referral, our dietitians also deliver outpatient nutritional care for children and families.
What to expect during your child’s visit with a dietitian
Whether your child uses a feeding tube or eats food normally, we are here for your child and family. Your child’s dietitian starts by listening to you, your child and your child’s doctor. You may be asked to bring a list of medications and a 3-5 day intake log. This is a list of everything your child consumes. Together, you and your child’s dietitian will go over the list and talk about your concerns. Then, we work with you to create a personalized nutrition plan that supports your child’s health and development. Your child’s care plan may include a modified diet, supplements or both. Our goal is to create a nutrition plan that supports your child’s health and development.
Frequently asked questions
What should I feed my child when they are not feeling well?
Talk with your child’s doctor about what foods and liquids are best to give to your child. They may recommend starting with a bland diet, such as bananas, rice, applesauce and toast (BRAT diet). It’s also important to keep your child hydrated with clear fluids such as water, broth or electrolyte drinks. Avoid giving your child sugary juice or soft drinks. Sugar can make diarrhea worse. If your child has diarrhea, talk with their doctor.
How can I get my picky eater to try new foods?
It’s important for children to eat a variety of foods – including fruits and vegetables. Always consult with your child’s doctor to make sure their diet is meeting their medical needs. Here are a few tips for helping your child try new foods:
- When offering food, include a fruit and vegetable.
- Learn how to make these food choices more accessible (they are easily seen by the child) and more appealing (shapes, sizes and smoothies).
- Create hands-on learning opportunities for your child to use all of their senses (taste, smell, sight and touch) and encourage them to help prepare the food.
Refer a patient to a pediatric specialist
Your pediatric patients and their families can expect compassionate, personalized care from the moment our specialists connect with them. Our pediatric specialists start by listening to fully understand their needs and develop an individualized care plan. To refer a patient, please call 317-338-8943 or fax your referral to 317-338-6524.