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WendyAndMilo

Vent: Food budget and just.one.single.boy

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I didn't get the impression she was actually asking for advice.  

 

 

Like we wait for people to ask for advice  :lol:  :lol:

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I know I already mentioned whipping cream, but your list looks very similar to my son's and it really came in handy for us to up the calories and fat in foods he was willing to eat. Plus, they sell it at Costcos in larger cartons that makes it a little less expensive. Usually I just sub it like milk, but he loves it actually whipped and served with berries. You could also toast some pound cake in a pan with butter and add the cream and berries on top - or serve it over pancakes with a side of bacon for a breakfast with more fat and protein.

 

My DS was about the texture too and I had good luck with roasted potatoes - crunchy and with a decent amount of olive oil that calories added up.

 

We also found cheese and crackers were a good addition to the fruit for lunch. He'd put a piece between two crackers for a mini sandwich with some protein. 

 

You might be able to get away with some olive oil in the spanish rice. I was also able to shred some chicken and put into the quesadilla and fry it in oil. With a side of Spanish rice it was almost like a real meal:) 

 

I know it is expensive, but maybe if you buy the whipping cream, butter and olive oil at Costcos in the bulk sizes it will be a do-able way to add some calories to foods he already likes to eat. 

 

Good Luck! 

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after looking at your list I have no suggestions at all. I never gave my children choices as a toddler. they ate whatever we ate .

 

if kids are hungry enough they will eat things that they may not "like"

I was very similar to the OP child. My parents tried everything, including the you eat whats in front of you or you don't eat. I just didn't eat. Even now as an adult, there are certain categories of food that I can't do. Even the smell of chocolate will make me nauseous for instance. Chicken is tricky, sometimes its fine but if I accidentally bite a piece of gristle or fat, I throw up. Seafood and all condiments are out, I gag on those too. I can't control it and would love to be able to walk in any restaurant and not worry if there is something I can eat.

 

There is a difference between someone being picky just to be picky and true can not eat something due to texture, etc. My siblings, raised in the same house with the same parents and rules eat everything. All kids are different. And some have true problems with certain foods. It has nothing to do with parenting.

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My concern with that list is that it's quite gluten-heavy.  When I had a mild wheat allergy as a child that it hadn't been diagnosed - I would randomly break out in hives, frequently had diarrhea, and I had dark circles under my eyes, but no other symptoms.   I craved wheat like crazy, and didn't like other foods.  Since the rest of the list has some rather strong flavors (olives), I'd worry it's not as much a sensory thing as it is an addiction to wheat because of allergy.  If he has the symptoms I had I'd seriously consider spending more for 6 weeks on gluten free items to see if that changes something.

 

If you're sure it's not a food allergy, he's old enough to learn how to make the things he likes from scratch so you don't spend as much.

 

If it's genuinely not a sensory thing, offering cheaper food that's healthy-ish without being processed bliss-point foods (potato salad, coleslaw, pureed bean soup, fruit, vegetables) are all cheap, somewhat healthy, filling, and not addictive.  I routinely say, "If you don't want one of those options, but only want a cookie, you're not really hungry, you're bored. We don't eat for boredom.  Dinner is in an hour, and you may have dessert after you eat it. No sweets until then."  Tears don't change the rules. Being hungry between meals is good for you.  Genuinely.  There have been hormones associated with the sensation of hunger that have beneficial effects on you.

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A couple things I did was use whipping cream instead of milk in waffles, French toast and mac and cheese. It's very calorie dense.

 

Half and half works well too if cream is too expensive. I can often get a pint of half and half for $.99, which is way less than the four bucks or so I'd pay for heavy cream. I use half and half in everything. Much tastier than straight milk.

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He doesn't have insurance so I'm going to put off the doctors and nutrient testing for now.

 

That makes sense, although I'd still look to see if low-cost insurance is an option in your area. Or, alternatively, you might be able to find information online that's specific to extremely restrictive diets. You might look into "food chaining", for example. (That's the only related phrase I can remember off the top of my head! But any search along the lines of "severe food aversion" should guide you.) People who work specifically with this issue might have posted advice online that you haven't tried.

 

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Could an alternative to lunchmeat that he might find acceptable (and be cheaper than processed lunchmeat, and less sodium) be thinly sliced roast chicken or turkey breast or ham or beef? 

 

When my six-foot "child " (ok, referring to my adult son with autism now) was being extremely picky and got down to 134 lbs and looked scrawny, I started adding a dish of ice cream to breakfast.  Of course, now he doesn't need it, but expects it, stinker.  I like the whipped cream idea others have had, too.  Would he drink homemade eggnog?

 

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Since he will eat pancakes, do you think he would try protein pancakes? The batter is equal parts egg whites, cottage cheese and oatmeal. Purée in the blender and then cook as normal.

 

Not sure if it would be a cheaper option, but would keep him fuller for longer maybe.

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Ok....all these calorie-dense ideas sound wonderful for keeping him full...but won't they make him gain weight??  Do kids need to worry about that??

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Ok....all these calorie-dense ideas sound wonderful for keeping him full...but won't they make him gain weight??  Do kids need to worry about that??

 

If he keeps eating the same amount of food overall that could be a concern down the road, but my guess is that if he eats more nutritious, fat and calorie-dense foods, he'll just end up eating less.

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Ok....all these calorie-dense ideas sound wonderful for keeping him full...but won't they make him gain weight??  Do kids need to worry about that??

 

If he's suddenly increased his food intake, he probably needs to gain weight. That's how children grow - they gain weight, then they shoot up.

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Ok....all these calorie-dense ideas sound wonderful for keeping him full...but won't they make him gain weight??  Do kids need to worry about that??

 

Yes

 

If he keeps eating the same amount of food overall that could be a concern down the road, but my guess is that if he eats more nutritious, fat and calorie-dense foods, he'll just end up eating less.

 

Yes

 

If he's suddenly increased his food intake, he probably needs to gain weight. That's how children grow - they gain weight, then they shoot up.

 

And yes.

 

My 10yo's body could actually use more body fat, so I wish I could get more overall calories into him.  We do our best.  But, even if he didn't need more body fat (which maybe yours does not, because he's getting enough calories from a small number of foods) he still needs adequate fats, proteins, and all the vitamins and minerals, both for general health AND for all the growing kids need to do regardless of weight.  (Like yours sounds, carbs are more than covered with my kid!)

 

Unlike the FTT thread, the suggestions given for a child with a limited diet are about greater variety, not just "more".  Even with my skinny kid, I wouldn't give him a half gallon of ice cream, a bowl of guac, half a quiche, and a protein shake on top of his pancakes and bacon.  But a generous serving of cheesy scrambled eggs INSTEAD OF three more pancakes and a bowl of dry Cheerios will give a wider nutrition profile and a more filling serving of fat and protein so he's less likely to be making toast as a snack an hour later.

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I'm no expert, but this article seems to have some good information - how to tell if aversion is caused by motor or sensory, specific things to do for each. 

 

https://www.arktherapeutic.com/blog/food-refusal-is-it-oral-motor-or-sensory-related/

 

Seems like info on eroding the mouth related primitive reflexes, which is a grand idea if they are a problem. My son would eat a wider variety of food when those reflexes were weaker, then give them back up again when the reflexes got stronger again.

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I haven't read the responses and I have no real advice.  I just want to say I am sorry  :grouphug:   $200/month for you two and pets is incredibly low.  I don't see how that would work for anyone.  Would you qualify for any assistance with food until you get through university?

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First, I would work on oatmeal for breakfast.  You can make a quality oatmeal using the real stuff in a crockpot.  It is also basically one thing, so it fits in the theme of his acceptable foods.  Stop buying cold cereal.   It is all basically crap.  

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