After more than a year of watching your baby grow into an active and curious toddler, you might begin to notice that your 15-month-old's weight is leveling. Those rapid weight gains that occurred during infancy have stopped, which is entirely normal.
The American Academy of Pediatrics reports that your toddler's weight will increase at a steady but less rapid rate until his or her next major growth spurt, which will occur during adolescence.
15-Month-Old Weight Ranges
The American Academy of Pediatrics reports the following average weights for 15-month-olds:
Boys: 24 1/2 pounds Girls: 23 pounds
However, normal weight ranges vary widely, so your 15-month-old might be gaining at a faster or slower pace. The World Health Organization reports the following weight percentiles for 15-month-old youngsters.
Fifteen-month-old boys in the 1st percentile may weigh as little as about 17 1/2 pounds, while boys in the 99th percentile may weigh closer to 30 pounds. (see Ref 3)
Similarly, girls in the 1st percentile at this age weigh 16 pounds, while those in the 99th percentile weigh around 28 pounds.
Weights that fall above or below these broad ranges should be mentioned to your child's pediatrician.
Toddler Weight: When To Be Concerned
Because such broad weight ranges exist for 15-month-olds, you might struggle to determine when to worry about your toddler's weight gain. Consider these factors when evaluating your child's weight:
Growth curve. Review your child's previous weights to ensure he or she is following a similar growth curve. Body changes. The AAP notes that over the course of his or her second year, your toddler's body will change,as he loses baby fat and develops muscle. These changes may impede weight gain.
15-Month-Old Eating Habits
Because your 15-month-old's growth rate has slowed, his or her appetite might diminish as well. After a year of breastfeeding or bottle feeding your child regularly, day and night, your increasingly independent toddler might not eat as frequently as you are used to. However, this reduced appetite is normal because, simply put, 15-month-olds require less food.
Healthy Eating Habits
These increasingly picky and independent toddlers might need gentle encouragement to eat and try new foods. If you're concerned that your 15-month-old is not eating enough food, consider these tips:
Offer small meals. Your 15-month-old has a small stomach, so offer five or six small meals and snacks, rather than three large meals, which might overwhelm your toddler's small stomach. (see Ref 5) Model positive behavior. Eating healthy foods, displaying proper table manners and creating a relaxing environment during meal times can encourage your 15-month-old to eat as well. Allow grazing. Your active 15-month-old might not want to sit still for a long meal. Set up a snack plate full of nutritious foods -- fruits, vegetables and whole grains -- and allow your youngster to snack and play.
If you remain worried about your 15-month-old's weight, talk to your pediatrician to determine how to best address your concerns.