How can I keep my daughter on a grain free diet when she sees all the stuff others eat and wants it!

Cathy - posted on 03/18/2012 ( 16 moms have responded )

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My daughter is 19months old and is starting to want what others are eating. (evenif it is not the healthiest foods) I have been making all her food and still breastfeeding. She screams for food if we are out at our families for dinner (bread especially)

If we go out for a meal ( which is rare) with other family memebers it is so difficult . I think she is just too young to be at a restaurant in general. She is a high energy child that wants to move.

How long can i shelter her from foods that have no nutritional value?

I need Ideas for snacks I can bring with me

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Beatrice - posted on 11/06/2012

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Hi everyone!

Good discussion - I have a 2.5 yo and I struggled with this issue as well. At 21 mos. I think they are *slightly* easier to distract (but not by much). I especially had a hard time with in-laws who didn't understand the culture of healthy eating or how bad these things are for you (especially sugar). My in-laws love to take my daughter to the store by our house and buy her a treat or just surprise her with something sweet as a sign of affection so I have a hard time telling them 'no' but I tried to delay her exposure as long as I could. My in-laws do not live nearby, so when we see them (1-2x/yr), I usually let them spoil her bc I know that those relationships are so valuable and I don't want to alienate her from them. I just wanted to share that with you bc I know it can seem like people are undermining your beliefs.



Now my daughter is in a childcare program twice a week and at snack time, everyone brings their own food. She really struggles with this bc she wants everything the other kids have (and you know they are not on the same page as far as food goes). She really just has a meltdown and I have to be firm with her sometimes or just give her a hug and say 'I know you're upset but I'm not giving you x.' She particularly loves those terrible danimals yogurt drinks, which she could eat 20 a day of if I let her (thank you in-laws - I had her on plain yogurt for the longest time!).



I think once our little ones are exposed to other kids, so much is out of our control and I just try to think of it as an opportunity to try new things. I will say that she self-limits what she eats (even halloween candy or cake) and I think that's due to all the effort I put in to delay her eating sugar. As a result, she will put it down when she doesn't want any more.

Toni - posted on 06/09/2012

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Hi Cathy, i totally agree with you about the poison of sugar etc and had a strict ban on it for my dd too. At that age it was still easy enough to just plain say no to her and redirect her if she had a tantrum - she didn't know what she was missing so it was fine. Birthday parties - well now she can have a peice of cake but there's no lollies chips etc. Not until she's 3 and my friends/family respect that

Gena - posted on 06/04/2012

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I totally agree that you are the mom and you should make whatever decisions you see fit for your daughter! I was just expressing an opinion and playing devils advocate. I think the "forbidden fruit" becomes VERY tempting to anyone that is very restricted.

Cathy - posted on 06/03/2012

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Thank you for your concerns and I do agree to a certain extent.. She is only 21 months old!! I have plentyof time for her to get "the good stuff" is that what you called it? ....Hmmmm
IT is more like poison.. 60 minutes just had a special segment on sugar -If it killed people faster if would be illegal. I am not that strict.. Yesterday we had a sugar cone ( it was gluten free) and coconut milk ice cream - she loved It .. its a sweet ( dessert) just a better choice. Becasue as the Mom -I'm the one choosing , not her at this point . We set examples in our home and explain why we dont eat certain things . There will be a time for birthday parties and family functions where she will get "the good stuff" I feel the most important times are when their brains are developing and they are growing so fast. I think parents should take more responsibility and make informed decisions on the facts. Go to www.Mercola.com and type in Milk, sugar for kids , first foods for babies ect and you will be very surprised that what is considered the "normal thing " to feed babies is actually not digestable until they are 20-25 months old.
Even pediatricians are still recomending rice milk in a bottle - research it....I wouldnt touch the stuff. Sugar ,sugar sugar...... and I certainly dont mind getting feedback -- If you have done your research. There is a certain psychological component to giving and eating sugar -- for pleasure . but the more we eat -the more we need .. Just like any drug .. Your brain actually gets use to the amounts you put in and then you need more to be satisfied.. Its been proven that the food industries add ingredients to make you want more ...
Many parents and relatives want to please their children and one way is through food and sweets. It is a way they can show they love their children - by puting a smile on their face-
I think moderation is best ,but the parents set the standard. IT is not just an opinion any more
the facts are the facts - too much sugar sets a child up for health problem and decreases teh immune functions in the body.

Ange - posted on 06/03/2012

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I have to agree with Gena, a bit. As a kid, I had a lot of food allergies, including yeast and corn (think corn syrup, the sweetener in everything!). I'm also old-- back when I was young it was called "being hyperactive" and was blamed on sugar in the diet, so I didn't get sweets either. Nevertheless, whenever I could sneak it or get away with it, I'd snag candy, I wolfed down cake with frosting, I wanted sweet stuff and sugar any way I could get it, because I didn't get it at home or when we went out, it all had corn syrup or would make me "hyper". I didn't get to eat bread, only rice cakes with fresh ground soy-bean butter. Ugh.
What do you think I did whenever the choice was mine? Yep. I would hop on my bike and ride to the convenience store and get candy/cake/etc. So... whenever possible, find ways to help her think she's getting some of the "good" stuff. My mom found candy made with carob, which at least sorta tasted like chocolate. We did a lot of home-baking for cakes, cookies, muffins and such, so I could have it too.

But altho I eventually outgrew the allergies, I sure still love Snickers bars! I think when you're denied, well, that just makes it the more desirable. Good luck.

Gena - posted on 06/02/2012

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Just to play devil's advocate...do you think that allowing sweets or other things occassionally will teach her how to eat those thing in moderation? I have seen, with kids on very strict diets, that when they are away from their strict parents or become school- age and are away from them at mealtimes that it causes them to rebel and eat bad things more often. Especially, if they see others eating it and feel like they are being deprived. If you teach her that these things are "sometime foods" and are only occassional treats, it may help her make good food choices in the long run. Just another opinion:)

Fadwa - posted on 05/27/2012

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ok, first we begin with fruit :
ingredient :
1 apple
2 strawberry
1/2 banana
1 cup oronge juice
cut fruit a small pieces,put over them the juice and keep it in preservatives food

Cathy - posted on 05/22/2012

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Thank you Sara!!
Its so hard for me to watch the junkie food parents feed kids. I know I wont want her to feel left out at parties - so as long as I can hold off with the sugar -the better.
The recipe for the bread is 1 cup of almond butter (fresh grind at whole foods)
2 eggs, 2 ripe mashed bananas, 1/2 ts of baking powder, 1ts apple cider vinegar,
You can add anything else you want - I add cinnamon, vanilla, cranberries, grated zuchini or carrots. You can also add stevia if you feel it is not sweet enough . My husband loves it and so does my Sarah. Bake 350 for 25 30 minutes for a loaf. I also make muffins.
All the best!
Cathy :)

Sara - posted on 05/21/2012

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Hi Cathy,
I think it's great that you're trying to keep your daughter sugar and white/processed ick free:)). That's so important for a toddlers/baby's growing body and immune system. I agree with the other poster about quinoa and other ancient grains.. They're great sources of protein and other viral vitamins and minerals, and micronutrients.
I have been trying the same thing with my son, 14months, and have recently added ancient grain sprouted bread into his diet because, well, he was becoming sort of obsessed with what I wouldn't give him. At the grocery store he'd be reaching, stretching as far as possible, towards the bread!! So, I found a great bread they make at the store with Elmer and other grains, and he loves it! I guess I think that if he didn't want it so badly, it certainly not something I'd give him, but I also don't want him to be pissed off that he can't have and over compensate later by eating Mac n cheese all day long. I think their little bodies know what it bad for them.. Watch his poop schedule, color, etc and if it looks healthy and seems like things are going well in that dept, then no need to worry:).
I know some vegan children who would get very upset at birthday parties because they couldn't have ice cream and cake... It's hard to remember being so young, but I do remember not wanting to be different than my friends. I think our kids are exploring everything now, so it's a good age to include very very healthful choices and teach them why we choose those things. Or shop in stores where they don't sell the cruddy stuff, if you can.. Whole Foods or another natural grocer?
Avocados are my take along item.. They keep him full forever and come in their own convenient little bowl:).
Good luck!! Please share your recipe for your flour less muffins!!! They sound killer!!!

Cathy - posted on 05/16/2012

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I do feed her sprouted breads and quinoa but that is just recently . She just turned 21 months. I also make a bread / muffins made from almond butter and eggs ( no flour ) it is amazing . No one can believe its flour less. Super easy to make & it's sweet enough with bananas mashed in it . I guess the real issues is that I want to stay away from the white breads and sugar which is hard to do outside the home especially when they start to go to birthday parties.

Toni - posted on 05/08/2012

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hi - not to judge but I think your a little misinformed about grains - you're right in that they can be hard to digest and of little nutritional value depending on their delivery.
My dd is vegan so grains area vital source of iron and protein and she has no issues digesting it.
Things like couscous are super quick and easy to make and very easy to digest, quinoa is also easy on the system and is a power grain.
Things like brown rice, wheat etc can be made easier to digest by cooking with kombu, easy to find at your asian grocers, If you don't make your own bread (I sure don't) there are so many great options out there. There are also some very good organic brown rice based toddler snacks as well which are sweetened with apple juice - these are a treat for my dd.
Brittany's list is pretty extensive re snacks.
try to have some carb avail that you can live with so your daughter doesn't feel like she's missing out

Brittney - posted on 03/22/2012

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My daughter is the same way, I have heard that if they only want, say mac n cheese, let them eat it until they're tired of it, but that just ruins the fun and taste of it! Just keep trying new foods! My daughter loves blue berries and cherry/grape tomatoes!

Cathy - posted on 03/22/2012

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Thank you! I will try some of these sites for food. It seems that some days she loves things and others she doesnt want anything to do with it..

Brittney - posted on 03/20/2012

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I understand, I actually didn't know that. I don't buy just any bread, I buy Healthy Choice bread because it has so much more nutrition than any other brand of bread I have seen. It is a bit pricey here in Iowa, at $3.49/loaf I buy it just on the off chance my husband gives her bread. And she rarely eats anything nutritious.



http://www.wholesometoddlerfood.com/todd... Snacks

http://www.wholesometoddlerfood.com/todd... Breakfast

http://www.wholesometoddlerfood.com/todd... Lunch

http://www.wholesometoddlerfood.com/todd... Dinner

http://www.wholesometoddlerfood.com/todd... Grazing



I use the websites above to make things for my daughter



you can also try

-grapes (cut in half)

-avocado (cut into sticks) (My daughter loves them, but I can't stand them)

-orange segments

-plums (diced)

-apricots (diced)

-cooked broccoli/cauliflower (with cheese sauce)

-kiwi (diced)

-banana with raisins for eyes and pretzel sticks for legs (or green beans)

-peas (I use petite frozen)

-corn (though this cannot be digested very well) (you could try creamed)

-egg noodles (you can make this from scratch if you have time, I blend spinach in my blender and make the noodles green)

-yellow zucchini squash (cooked and diced)

-bell pepper sticks (not a favorite with my daughter)

-cherry tomatoes

-cherries (pitted and cut in half)

-peaches (diced)

-tofu sticks (you can make them like chicken nuggets)

-smoothies

-strawberries

-blueberries

-raspberries

-black berries

-potatoes (you can make a lot)

-sweet potatoes (makes good fries)

-celery sticks with peanut butter (if no allergy, my daughter wont eat peanut butter)

-hummus or tahini dip

-applesauce

-yogurt

-wheat germ (http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/cere...)

-cheese sticks

-veggie hot dogs or nitrate free hot dogs

-salmon

-tuna

-eggs

-kidney beans

-beets

-figs

-cantaloupe or watermelon (you'd be surprised at the nutrition, I know I was)



As for the explanation: "we don't eat that, it has no nutrition for your growing body" (take out healthy snack) "Here, this is much better." (I usually go on to explain that the snack has (example) niacin and folate in it and that helps the body form red blood cells and aids in the formation of genetic material within every body cell. It plays a role in reducing blood homosysteine levels and aids in protein metabolism. (kind of stuff, she doesn't understand but someday she will)

Cathy - posted on 03/20/2012

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Thank you Brittney,

I am doing most of those snacks.. Must try the cooked apples. She will chew on a raw one for a while. Ive done some research that shows that children up to the age of 20 month do not have the enzymes to digest grains. (even though most of the cook books and MD advise it to put them on rice cereals . ) It really is empty calories. I have read that this is why so many babies have weigth problems as young children ( from eating all the carbs)

I dont have these things in the home, but we dont live locked up here and have friends and family that eat poorly. I dont want to judge them and they make their own decisions.

If I try to tell my daughter we dont eat that - she is not understanding , nor does she choose to understand . She just wants what she sees..

Brittney - posted on 03/18/2012

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May I ask why you do not give her grain based products?

If she is screaming for it and you look at the label and find only sugar in it, tell her it isn't good for her, then give her something that is healthy. As for how long? Probably until school age when she may share food with friends otherwise maybe until she can drive herself to get unhealthy food. If you don't have it in the house it is even better.

fruits/veggies (fresh is best), tofu, beans...etc



Snacks to bring with you:

-raisins (Iron and fiber)

-diced, cooked carrots sticks (Vitamin A)

-diced, cooked apple slices (Fiber and Vitamin C)

-diced star fruit (Vitamin C, copper, Vitamin C)

-Gerber baby snacks (cheese puffs, fruit/veggie puffs, fruit/veggie grabbers, fruit/veggie melt a ways..etc )

-wheat free teething biscuits

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