Jude loves to eat. He could quite easily eat from the second he wakes up to the moment he falls asleep.
I regularly get asked about Jude’s diet because I guess nutrition is quite a large focal point of a child, particularly a disabled child’s, life. So I thought I’d write a couple of examples of what he gets through in a day. I have no idea if this will help anyone but at worst it may be interesting as a comparison.
So yesterday as an example Jude had:
Two Weetabix with oat milk and agave nectar, a glass of orange juice and half a piece of fruit bread with jam.
Fruit as a snack at school.
Lunch was a flask of pasta, beans and peas, a little pot of cucumber and cherry tomatoes and an Organix cereal bar.
Jude was promised a gingerbread man so had this after school
Dinner – brown rice, quinoa, onion, smoked garlic, butternut squash all fried up in coconut oil and then left to bubble away in passata for a while. He loved this. Then some watermelon and an Alpo vanilla custard pot.
Bedtime snack (!) – one piece of bread and marmite sandwich style. I snuck some of my beloved Omega Oils in here by spreading it on the bread…shneaky.
Is this a lot? A little? I have no comparison but allow him to eat regularly as I know he’s inherited my huge appetite.
Two days ago he had:
Breakfast – plain yoghurt and blueberries and then a piece of toast with agave nectar. Water to drink.
Fruit snack at school (maybe a biscuit too)
Lunch – Spaghetti bolognaise in his flask. The bolognaise was made with lentils and veggie mince, green peppers, carrot, onion, garlic and passata. After this he had some strawberries and a soya yoghurt.
He went out for dinner with his granny and had pizza and ice cream! If he had been at home then it would have been sweet potato fries, crispy kale, avocado and veggie meatballs. He lucked out!
Bedtime snack was two Weetabix and oat milk.
Packed lunch examples
Now I do not profess to being a nutritionist or an expert in nutrition at all however, I think Jude has a pretty cool diet for a ten year old boy. He likes his vegetables, doesn’t have too many treats and enjoys what we eat as a family. But I do see the benefits of writing a food diary just to keep track of what he does and doesn’t eat because he can’t tell me when he’s truly full up or hungry, what he fancies eating or things he really doesn’t want so I kind of just have to wing it. As I have mentioned previously, Jude is quite sensitive to taste and would quite happily eat the same meal over and over again, a couple of times a day. Pasta. Just plain pasta! But that isn’t going to happen any time soon.
Some important questions to consider when noting down a food diary are:
- What time of the day did my child eat?
- What did they eat?
- Where did they eat? I
- How much did they eat?
- Who was there?
- Were there any environmental factors? – (NAS 2016)
I read this article – 8 Facts about the “Autism” Diet and felt a pang of sadness that I can’t properly do the gluten and casein free thing with Jude. His father, for some reason, will not follow the rules entirely so the alternate weekends he spends at his flat would negate all the effort we put in at home. BUT I’m going to give it a go for a month anyway. I know I’ve said this before but I’m ready to do it now as I’m intrigued as to what effects it may have and am optimistic that it could have an impact on Jude’s development and happiness.
What is your child’s favourite meal? Do you make packed lunches? Do you know anyone following the gluten/casein free diet? I’d love to hear your thoughts.