Dietary issues are pretty common when dealing with kids on the #autism spectrum. Factor in things like food allergies and sensory issues and it really can get complicated. I can’t stress this enough. I wish people would throw away the old saying that if their hungry they’ll eat. I don‘t think that it applies here.
We aren’t talking about just picky eaters. These kids have a physical aversion to certain colors, smells, tastes and textures. They’re not being difficult. In many cases the child will go hungry rather than eat something that will upset them. When you add in food allergies or special diets, you’re essentially removing options that can make getting them to actually eat, extremely difficult. My Elliott’s the same way. We met with a dietitian yesterday to seek advice. Elliott is losing weight and hasn’t grown in the last year or so. One of the things we are focusing on, aside from avoid tree nuts, is increasing his caloric intake. I’ll be honest, I’ve basically violated many of the rules in parenting 101. At times, I have resorted to bribery, in order to get him to eat. Tonight, for example, I ordered pizza because I knew he would eat it. I’ve been trying to get him to eat all day and at most he would nibble and that’s it. I don‘t want to hound him or have him develope unhealthy eating habits, but the bottom line is that he needs to eat. I know many of you face the same problems, perhaps for different reasons. I’m so tired of trying to explain to people how much sensory processing issues can complicate dietary things. I think it’s a difficult concept to grasp. Thankfully, most of our family is on board. I still get the odd, if he’s really hungry, he’ll eatfrom people. I was thinking it would be a good thing to talk about this and share our experience, tips and tricks. How have you coped with this type of dietary struggle? Please share your story in the comments below. 🙂