Energy requirements of children and adolescents with cerebral palsy appear to be disease-specific and different from the current recommendations for healthy children, varying depending upon functional capacity, degree of mobility, severity of disease, and level of altered metabolism. Feeding problems are prevalent in many of these children, and can result in inadequate energy intake. Wasting of voluntary muscles, a common symptom of cerebral palsy, contributes to reduced resting energy needs; nevertheless, the location of the central nervous system lesion may also influence energy requirements. To guarantee individualized, accurate, and optimal energy recommendations for this population, resting energy expenditure should preferentially be measured by indirect calorimetry. Equations and formulae to predict healthy people's resting energy expenditure are available, but tend to overestimate these children's energy needs. Future studies should address the role of the central nervous system in regulating energy metabolism in this population. When adequately nourished, children and adolescents with cerebral palsy appear more tranquil and require decreased feeding time, which gives caregivers time to develop the child's functional independence and character. Understanding energy requirements of this population will provide caregivers and health professionals with guidelines for providing optimal nutritional status.