Tips for helping your child live a ‘normal’ life.

March 3, 2009 at 3:08 am Leave a comment

I notice the look of hope on my daughter’s face when I am checking the ingredient list on certain foods that look appealing to her.  And, unfortunately, I have seen the look of disappointment when she learns she cannot have that food.  I have seen her eyes light up when I have found a new treat for her and I’ve seen how happy she is when she realizes she can eat something that her older sister gets to eat.  As a mother, I want her to be able to eat everything that her peers are eating, but I know that is not possible.  It breaks my heart to have to tell her that some of these very mouth-watering foods could be very hurtful to her, but I do it because I love her.  And because of this, I have come up with some things to help her feel like she’s ‘normal’.   I hope that these tips will be of benefit to you or at least get your creative juices flowing!  And if you have any great tips, please leave a comment on here.  I welcome your input.

  • Desserts – I have come to the point that I just like to have desserts on hand that my daughter enjoys and can eat.  Not only can she eat them, but they are very similar to the desserts the rest of us eat – taste and appearance!  This has been fun for me.  Some are simple, some time-consuming, but they are ALL worth every minute of time and effort!  The smile on my child’s face makes it all worth it.  You’ve got to find what works for you.  One of my favorites:  Cherrybrook Kitchen cake and cookie mixes!  Check them out!  They are free of nuts, dairy, egg, and peanut – even gluten!
  • Ready-made snacks – These type of snacks I like to keep on hand for traveling, picnics and carrying in her bag to church or friends’ houses.  Most of the fruit snacks available in grocery stores are fine for my child’s needs, but for variety, I buy other sweets on occasion.  My favorite cookie – Back to Nature!  Try the chocolate creme!  Yummy!  I can get these at Whole Foods and Publix.  Look for the buy one get one free sales on these!
  • Peanut Butter – My daughter is allergic to peanuts, so I have found a good alternative to peanut butter.  One is Soy Butter – sold at most grocery stores – It’s more oily, but spreads nice like real peanut butter and my daughter likes it.  If you are allergic to soy, though, try Sun Butter.  I’ve tried Sun Butter – made from sunflower seeds, but it has a big aftertaste that neither I nor my daughter can handle.  If you really like sunflower seeds, you’ll like Sun Butter.  Who doesn’t love a PB&J?  Now we have a good alternative!
  • Baked goods – if you’re into making baked goods from scratch, but have an egg allergy, today is your lucky day!  Try Ener-G Egg Replacer (affordable and it works!) for a lot of your recipes.  As with any alternative, you may have to tweak your recipe to see what works for you, but this works well in a lot of baked goods.  Find it at Whole Foods.

A few tips –

  • Make a batch of cupcakes out of the allergy-free mix and freeze them individually.  Keep some frosting on hand, as well.  Then, when you need a quick dessert or your child is heading to a birthday party, grab one out of the freezer, thaw it, frost it and you’re on your way.
  • Make a batch of cookies and freeze them in pairs to do the same thing.  Or just keep a couple of cookie mixes on hand.  They don’t take long to mix and bake and you’ll always be ready for that last minute invitation to someone’s home or outing where you’ll need a special dessert for your child.
  • Experiment and come up with your own quick fixes.  Not only will you be happy that your child has something special to eat like everyone else, but you’ll have the satisfaction that you came up with it on your own!  I’ve come up with a few that my daughter really likes and I love knowing that I’ve made something yummy especially with her in mind…and one that my entire family can enjoy together!

Entry filed under: The Caregiver, The Menu. Tags: , , , , , , , , , .

A Day in the Life of an Allergic Child… Allergy-Free Recipes!

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