Sensory Diet

Misty - posted on 07/07/2010 ( 8 moms have responded )




My son has Aspergers and when he started kindergarten a few years ago I was asked if he was on a sensory diet. (he's 7 now)

I said no.

But he refuses to eat a lot of things. They told me he had probably put himself on a sensory diet. :-P

Is there anywhere that has suggestions on different kinds of meals/foods to make for certain sensory diets?

We go through phases. When he was a year old all he would eat was green beans all day long.

Then it was cheetos.

Now it's corn dogs and doritos...and brocolli.

He will randomly try something new, like sandwiches or chicken but it's hard to get him to try stuff .

He won't eat anything with liquid (Soups) because he doesn't like it. He won't eat cereal. Maccaroni. He won't eat A LOT of things LOL

Any suggestions?


Irene - posted on 07/08/2010




Our OT suggested we give our son frozen fruit at the beginning of the meal to numb his mouth a little so the textures weren't so difficult. Now he is the best eater in the house!

Kathy - posted on 07/09/2010




My grandson (4 years old) eats only 7 items. We play the lip touching/kissing game. We touch the food to our lips, make kissing sounds like we love it. We do that with one food for a long while, then we start on the tongue touching with the same food. Just little flicks of tongue to touch it. Then we get to putting in the mouth and trying a few chews, even if he spits it out, just keep plugging away. Takes a lot of time and patience, but on some it works.

User - posted on 07/07/2010




Hi Misty,

Our OT worked with my son. His mouth is hypo-sensitive so he didn't feel the food in his mouth and would stuff (like a chipmunk). The OT just worked with him becoming aware of his mouth.

An OT might be able to help, or a nutritionist who specializes in introducing foods to children with limited tolerances.



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Rachael - posted on 07/15/2010




Heather is right, Sensory Diet isn't just about food guy's. The word "Diet" used in this sence isn't meant

literally.... Read her post again as she is spot on the money on this one.

In regard to food if that is more your question???? Be careful here as I found out the hard way that often a child on the spectrum "self limits" with food for a reason - Allergy, Food sensitivity etc. So don't just jump in there. There may be a reason why they don't eat a certain food or gorge themselves on others which may not necessarily be very good for them. Check into it. get allergy testing done/Food sensivity testing done and it may answer a lot of your questions. I found that my boy craved nutella but reacted to it as he was allergic to hazelnuts.... He took himself of Dairy by three months. Everyone hammered me how bad that was for him and his development. Shortly after he lost 8 inch's of his bowel and nearly his life. I was told at the time if he had been on Dairy, wheat etc. all the things he had stopped eating, he would have most definately lost his life. It was a little bit of self preservation going on and I didn't even realise that at the time. Sometimes it pays to listen to you "wordless" child and watch quietly... they sometimes have the answers themselves!! I am much more careful now and have a very healthy 7 year old 45kg, eats only saltana's, apples, banana's, fries & tempura nuggets (home made), bacon, steak, chicken, tuna and Extra juicy orange cordial but is as healthy as a horse!!! I now know what he can and can't eat and work around this with what he likes also. He also doesn't like to eat anything he can't pick up with his fingers so "soup" is out lol... So.... he doesn't eat soup... he still eats and is healthy and now growing stronger by the day - Pead can't believe how BIG and healthy he is!!! Supplements help with the shortfalls in his diet - Calcium and Magnesium Phos. crushed into his juice etc. they also help with behaviours because if the diet is right so is a lot of other things when it comes to our kids.... All systems are now working well!!

Two good tips from this - testing for any allergies or food sensitivities from the start to determine no go zones - Sick or impact on behaviour etc. and find a good herbalist/natrapath to close shortfalls in diet area's.

Chynna - posted on 07/15/2010




Hi there! We had a rough time with our oldest 'sensory' girl (and now with our son). From what we've learned the best things to do is to keep trying to mix what he likes with what he needs. Try preparing foods different ways (eg: frozen, baked, fried--with good 'brain-friendly' oil like olive or veg), etc.). Does he like smoothies or milk shakes? you can sneak so much into those===blueberries, bananas...things Jaimie would NEVER eat otherwise. You could even make 'brain=friendly' pancakes (I have a GREAT recipe if you're interested). Most times it isn't the TASTE our kiddos don't like but the TEXTURE. So just experiment preparing the foods different ways.

Feel free to contact me if you need other ideas. I'm more than happy to help. We've had aLOT of hurdles in this area. =)


Heather - posted on 07/13/2010




A sensory diet is not just about food - it is about the different sensory experiences your child has during the day. Those can affect his eating patterns, too. My son got his "sensory diet" through an occupational therapist. It including things like brushing, applying certain pressures to his joints and wrapping him snuggly in blankets - just to name a few. I would suggest reading "The Out of Sync Child" and "The Out of Sync Child Has fun" to get some ideas. If you are able to seek help from an OT, do so. Therapy was very helpful for my now 9 year old Aspie. When he started, he could not eat food of certain textures, fodd that was of mixed textures (spaghetti, casseroles, even a cupcake with icing) and his gag reflex started in the middle of his tongue. We worked on certain mouth exercises to help with this. He still doesn't care too much for mixed textures but he is able to eat so much more.

Alisha - posted on 07/10/2010




Kathy my son is 3 and a half and we do the same thing! he has a diet of about 5 items...we started out playing peek a boo with a napkin so he can tolerate the look of it and then moved on to touching it and now on to using parts of his face with it...we go to a feeding group and they use the SOS aproach and food chaining ..its very slow baby steps but it has make some changes

Cheryl - posted on 07/09/2010




My three year old hasn't been diagnosed, but I am pretty sure he's on the scale. He is the pickiest eater in the world. He won't eat anything with a dual texture. Soup, yogurt with fruit, ice cream with pieces, etc. He also goes on kicks where he is eating the same thing for months at a time. I finally started giving him V8 V-Fusion juices because they have fruit and vegetable juices together, at least now he's getting some veggies even if he refuses to eat them. He also refuses to give up the bottle. I got him to give up the pacifier pretty easily, but the bottle is just not going away. It's hard sometimes, but I just keep trying.

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