Meals that Heal: What To Feed Your Sick Child

Though your child may not have much of an appetite when he's sick, try to get him to eat. These comfort foods can help.

If your child has...

Diarrhea

Serve: Clear fluids, such as water, broth (for kids over 1), or electrolyte solutions, to prevent dehydration (avoid juice and soft drinks- the sugar can worsen diarrhea); a normal diet that includes such binding foods as rice, ripe bananas, and cooked veggies.

Constipation

Serve: Prunes or prune juice to stimulate bowel function; high-fiber foods, such as fresh apples, oranges, carrots, and celery; water to keep stools regular.

A fever

Serve: A regular diet, but since feverish kids generally eat very little, add dips, sauces, or butter to increase every bite's caloric density; plenty of fluids.

A sore throat

Serve: Hot noncaffeinated tea with honey (but only for children over 1); high-calorie ice-cream smoothies.

A stuffy nose

Serve: Warm foods, such as chicken soup, which act as a vaporizer, loosening nasal mucus.

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