The one going Evolution of a family’s eating

It started in April of 2010 when Daddy and I decided to try the Feingold diet  with the boys (see blog post here).  Big Brother was the main motivator, but the Big Three aren’t good for either boy (Artificial Colors, Artificial Sweeteners and Preservatives.).  We have been more so less strict about this; adding items and removing other items that we see a reaction (behavior) from.  As it stands now we avoid The Big Three; but we have added some “not allowed foods” back into his diet.  Almonds and oranges are two of the big ones we have allowed back in; he loves them both and I do not see any behavior reaction from them.  With the new limits we are planning and starting to “impose” having been able to add back in to his diet some real foods that we avoided at first is a real help – gives us more real food options.  However, there are still some 100% real foods that we avoid, apples being the biggest (and you’d be surprised how many things have APPLE JUICE in them).  Here is a full list of other posts about eating and our family.

A few months ago we removed all dairy from Big Brother’s diet.  This is a work in progress as I suspect he is still getting some hidden Dairy but Momma is learning.  We did this after medical tests revealed he has a milk allergy.  We are luck we have been able to add almonds back to his diet (over a year ago) with no reaction; because I am able to use almond milk for his bedtime hot cocoa.  That has made the transition easier.  There has been no behavior change, sadly momma was hoping for a little calming, but we know he has an allergy so the removal was necessary, even without any perceivable change in him.  He never ate cheese; but he is still missing yogurt.  In fact, we have not explicitly told him he can’t have dairy – you tell him that and all you are going to have are fights; he is just now getting good at accepting NO to the Big Three and still complains about THAT.  We have simply removed it without discussing it.

Now in 2012 Daddy and I have again had a meeting of the minds and decided we want to evolve our food choices even further for the family.  This is currently “in process”.  We plan to remove all HFCS from our diet (yes should done it long ago); eat only whole grain (Momma is now GF); and try to eat as whole food as possible.  Real food, whole foods.  We are doing this by attrition; as the more processed foods (crackers for example) are eaten up they are not being replaces.  We have decided we simply should not be eating things made of chemicals.  Pretty simple.  We want the boys to grow up with good eating habits.  It is hard; a lot of the junk (like pop tarts, which Big hasn’t had in years) is really yummy.   Momma struggles with this too – no more Mac and Cheese??  We are going to push veggies and fruit as snacks and simply stop buying things if we can’t read the ingredients out loud.  I know I am behind some of my friends in this, but I have resisted allowing diet and food to take up THAT much of my active thought (not like I don’t have anything else to occupy my mind); but it is time to bite the bullet; clean up their diet (our diets) and get them on a path to good eating as adults.  This time I do not have any hope of behavior changes or improvements this time, but it just needs to be done.  (I do admit, as I change our diet again and again, I’d love to see a ‘miracle’ change in the over-the-top energy and silliness levels around here – it happens for others, so why not us?).

I have found a source for safe candy that the boys like.  I will be more diligent about carrying safe candy and gummies  so that the boys are less tempted by vending machines and “treats” on long days of travel or errands.  We now have a Trader Joe’s; so that helps a little one the few special items we’ll need to buy (got safe jelly beans there last year).  In reality the biggest “need” is for momma to stop being lazy and to actually cook and tow a hard line about what she will and won’t allow.  I have always has a hard time with this due to Big Brother self limiting regarding food – both in items eaten and amount.  Nevertheless this needs to be done.  There is a chance, if his eating does not improve, I might go back to our Pediatrician once our diet adjustment is done.  Also when we move this summer any food not fitting the bill will be trashed.  The biggest thing is momma has to tow a harder line about treats and buying food when we are out.


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7 responses to “The one going Evolution of a family’s eating

  1. rebecca

    Sounds good. Are you going to try the whole family (or you and the kids anyway) on gluten-free? That was our biggest improvement with Charlie.
    Working on figuring out a coconut based yogurt for you guys (and me) to make at home. Our local health food section of our grocery store carries an almond “milk” yogurt called Almande I think (I’ve not bought it since last time it was on sale as it was pricey). I comes in blueberry, raspberry, cherry and coconut flavors (might be others my store doesn’t carry). It might be worth trying to find this yogurt locally, and if none of your stores have it, ask your natural foods grocer to special order it since yogurt is one of his favorite foods (and that’s an excellent source of probiotics for his gut… and good bacteria is what helps keep the yeast in the gut in check.) I honestly hope that we can get Charlie to eat yogurt one day (it’s on his hate list and I don’t think he’s eaten any since he was an infant unless I baked with it or made cheese with it as part of our cheese culture… way back when goat milk was thought to be okaqy for him.) Henry on the other hand loves REAL yogurt made with dairy, but fusses over “alternative” yogurts, as he’s not yet lost his taste for dairy.

  2. Laura

    keep at it , you are doing awesome! it gets easier as time goes by and you reacclimate. we have done well with So Delicious Passionate Mango coconut milk yogurt… (stage one!!) and dairy free

  3. It really does get easier, but it gets harder too… hard to explain. I think you have kind of a push and pull to adjust and re-adjust as time goes on. For example, if you read through my blog you’ll see that we started out w/hardly any dairy and then we added raw dairy back in and thought we were fine w/that. I have had a struggle w/myself since I have corn allergies of finding a snack that is okay and then I tend to overindulge and back up and re-think things again (my potato chip addiction post!!)
    We’re pulling dairy from Peri again to see if it improves her quality of sleep, and the whole family is mostly corn-free now (with some exception- when Pixie goes to the movies w/a friend, I’ll pop organic corn on the stove for her, etc.) It really does change and evolve as you see things change.

    I just found out that styrofoam contains corn/gluten, so take-out containers even from gf restaurants are taboo now (and coffee takeout.) Some cardboard containers use a gluten in the glue too. We’ve been at the GF thing for 2 years, did organic/Feingold for a year before that, and have been off of colors for 6 yrs now, and I am STILL learning and changing- probably always will be.

    Some weeks I buy “acceptable” fish-sticks and tater tots b/c I am processing other foods and prepping dinners for the freezer, and just cant’ make lunch from scratch until I catch up in other areas, and that’s okay too. I have to learn to do only what I can do without killing myself. Some days lunch is baby carrots and hummus and fruit. Some days we don’t have the protein I would like, or the girls have had too many sweets. A couple of times we have missed something on a label or forgotten to ask about a particular ingredient. Sometimes (in restaurants, particularly) even the most well-meaning person will steer you wrong and you get gluten or artificial colors or whatnot. The world doesn’t end, you just learn and keep trying to do better and make the right changes.

    Just hang in there!

  4. pamela

    Honestly food has to become a “way of life” . and it strangly already is…it’s just “what way of life”. Convience has taken over in American (and many other countries as well). So its learning to get back to the basics, find teh true “convience foods”. I mean there was once a time when EVERYONE grew their own veggies/fruits, slaughtered their own meats, etc. So we have the conveince of finding great farmers and sources and buying from them after their hard work. Our tough job is figuring out what is best for our families bodies. You know this has been a passion of mine for at least 12 years. And it is ever evolving and changing due to new things I find as well as our ever changing needs!

    You are doing a great job. Just do what you do best, make lists, organize your thoughts and take one day at a time.

    If YOU are still having dairy yourself you can still have MAC N CHEESE> I make it from scratch with GF noodles and it is super yummy!

    Love you

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