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My 12 year old sister is very athletic. She eats terribly & need some help with what she can eat

by (0) Updated March 28, 2014 at 3:01 PM Created March 27, 2014 at 11:45 AM

She is constantly on the move, even when shes not at cheerleading practice 5 times a week she's always dancing around.

She has been off school for the past few days as she can't walk cos her muscles are hurting her. This is possibly down to a growth spurt but I think its because of her diet. She doesn't eat much vegetables & eats a lot of processed meat. What can I do or give her to help as she obviously needs protein but I don't want to give a 12 year old protein shakes?!

Thanks in advance

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10077 · March 28, 2014 at 2:57 PM

I'm not a low carber, and so would recommend high glycemic carbs like rice and sweet potatoes for snacks. Your sister sounds like she needs support for aerobic exercise, and that's precisely what these foods are good for. Your body only needs so much protein, and excessive amounts are an expensive way to fill a need for bulk calories. If you want to add a little protein, sushi is a good snack food.

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16858 · March 28, 2014 at 10:09 AM

Buy the poor girl a steak. Take her our to a paleo acceptable restaurant, or make her dinner at your house. Show her what real food is.

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26354 · March 27, 2014 at 6:20 PM

Being immobile due to muscular pain is not the result of a growth spurt. Growth tends to result in joint pain, and is not debilitating to normal use (high intensity exercise, maybe -- but certainly not walkin around at school). My guess is that she is sick with mono or a similar virus -- but she needs to be seen by a doctor.

In any case, the answer is not that she has a protein deficiency in her diet. Some protein is good... But that doesn't mean more protein is better.

As for eating fruits and vegetables, I am all for that -- but those are not the cause of her current malidy.

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0 · March 27, 2014 at 3:46 PM

I just want ideas on some healthy enjoyable treats for kids that would be naturally high in protein to help her muscles. Don't wanna change her diet!

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992 · March 27, 2014 at 3:05 PM

Good luck telling someone else how to live / eat.

I hadn't realized how strong common food addictions are until I flipped my diet around and compared with others in my family.

If she isn't seeking this path, I wouldn't push it on her. A diet that requires you to prepare every meal might not pair well with a 12 year old who is always on the move. You could try persuading her with the athletic benefits, although cheerleading isn't exactly performance driven. (Maybe you could point to the skin and body composition benefits, although, at 12 it's not beneficial to be chasing after a low body fat %.)

Your best bet would be to get her parents to cook paleo, then if she doesn't have money to eat out frequently, suddenly, she's paleo.

Maybe get her some vitamin C to eat around the processed meats in her diet.

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227 · March 27, 2014 at 2:28 PM

I'd rather eat processed meat than (processed) protein shakes. Processed meat (bacon, sausage, ham, burger patties, etc.) are probably a lot better than the super processed discarded by-product of cheese making (whey protein) or highly refined and processed isolated soy protein. Either way, it's probably better to eat some bacon and eggs for breakfast, a burger patty for lunch and some sausage for dinner than to drink protein shakes. Just my 2 cents.

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