View Full Version : What does your child with Sensory Integration issues eat?

07-01-2012, 09:10 PM
DD A and DD K both have varying degrees of SID and we are struggling to get them to eat anything other than ice cream (DD K is off all dairy right now, so ice cream is off limits). A has a peanut allergy and K has an almond allergy.

Neither will eat anything with "flecks" of color in it or anything brown.

I am at my wits end.

07-01-2012, 09:48 PM
My DS exists on pizza, pbj, jelly sandwiches, hamburgers, mac n cheese, wedding soup, yogurt, broccoli, the occasional orange, certain cereals I will allow, corn and pretty much nothing else. Honestly, I'm ok with this b/c I can get him to try new things. Yesterday he tried cheese and didn't like it (although he does eat it on pizza). He has had plain chicken but now refuses it. He does drink one nutritional drink a day so I know he gets the nutrients he needs daily.

Honestly, all I care about is that DS gets nutrition. He normally eats some variation of what we have for dinner (burgers etc...) or one of his staples b/c if I don't make him that he eats NOTHING and looses weight. I know some ppl will talk about making a child eat the one meal you cook. It's very hard with a child with sensory issues and food aversion issues. All I care about, again, is that DS eats in general.

07-01-2012, 09:56 PM
I have been keeping a food log for both girls (have to for DD K since we have eliminated dairy - we are trying to figure out her GI issues) and DD A eats less than DD K. Neither is getting protein. DD A would live on Stonyfield Farms smoothies, which are loaded with sugar. DD K will occationally eat what I serve for dinner, but she will normally only eat pasta, cucumbers or cherry tomatoes.

I am totally stumped.

07-01-2012, 10:08 PM
My DS drinks the big stoneyfield farms yogurt b/c it has 10 grams of protein. I'm not concerned about the sugar right now b/c I know I can get protein into him that way. I also have been known to give DS spagettios and melt cheese into it. The one absolute thing we do is no food dyes (DS reacts badly and I do not know which one, so we eliminated all of them).

Honestly, I know DD eats healthier than DS, but she has absolutely no food issues and eats whatever is placed in front of her. I'm hoping that DS will outgrow some of this and I can add in some healthier options to his diet. For now, the nutritional drink is serving it's purpose while I attempt to have DS try new items.

07-01-2012, 10:12 PM
You are right. I should try to think of the smoothies differently. I should try spagettios with them (I am embarrassed to say that I have never had them before - even in college!). :bag

07-01-2012, 10:22 PM
They are not my first choice, but a better option IMO than some other stuff. FWIW, tonight I served turkey vegetable soup and some leftover corned beef. DS ate wedding soup (and he only ate the meatballs out of it). Later he ate a drinkable yogurt, a bowl of cereal and some crackers (not the greatest, but at least it was something). He refused the watermelon (which he has eaten before), cold pizza which he likes, quesadillas that I make which he also likes. I'm hoping tomorrow he eats a bigger breakfast b/c lunch is a drinkable yogurt, 2 jelly sandwiches (camps is PB free), mandarin oranges and a fruit and veggie combo drink.

07-02-2012, 02:33 PM
Interestingly enough, Greenbean, my child with SID, is my best eater. He'll try anything and loves even foods with more complex tastes. However, they MUST be room temperature or slightly cold or they get thrown across the table. :(

I'm trying to think of solid, non brown colored food. The only protein I come up with is cheese, which has dairy. Have you tried showing them that brown food can be good by reintroducing Nutella or Hershey's syrup or Hershey's kisses? Maybe you can evebntually move to a nutbutter.

Oh, what about scrambled eggs?

Sorry, I'm not much help. Fortunately, taste is one sense we don't have any problems with.

Eta: sorry, I just saw they are allergic to some nuts. Could you convince them to like sunflower butter if mixed with something tastey like chocolate?

07-03-2012, 08:31 AM
Toasted plain bagel with plain cream cheese (or if we are Einsteins, he likes the pretzel bagels)
Plain pasta with parmesan cheese
Grilled cheese
Cheese quesedilla
Chik fil a nuggets
The occasional cheeseburger with ketchup
Strawberry gogurt
popcorn, chips, pretzels
cheese pizza
Apple juice , but only if it is a juice box, and preferably a green one.
Chocolate Milk if it is the Hershey's boxes from Costco
A few bites of scrambled eggs once in a while
Vanilla or cookies and cream ice cream with sprinkles.

So---no vegetables, no fruit (aside from the apple juice in the green box)
plenty of carbs, some dairy and meat. He seems to crave salt and crunchy things.

He is extremely specific. If food that should be warm turns room temperature, he will not eat it. If it does not look "the way it is supposed to", he won't eat it. He is brand specific as well and can tell the difference if you try to switch it up. Which I don't.
He also prefers to graze throughout the day instead of eating a "meal".

Packing school lunch is a nightmare.

07-03-2012, 08:37 AM
The smoothie thing can definitely work in your favor. How about So Delicious coconut yogurt blended with different fruits? I do frozen banana and strawberry. You can throw in a few leaves of spinach or another green, and you can't taste it as long as you don't overdo it. Would the color be a problem with that? If so, what if you put it in an opaque container with a straw? I wonder if you could do some type of protein powder in there.

For K- what if you make something like pasta with little chunks of cherry tomato and really soft, shredded chicken? What if you cook the pasta in chicken broth? Will she do mashed potatoes? You could blend stuff in there too.

How about muffins with stuff hidden in them? Start with something kid friendly like banana and chocolate chip, then branch out. They are brown, but would the dessert-like quality make them more accepting?

I've recently discovered DS2 will eat anything I put in a tortilla. Sometimes presentation goes a long way.


DS1 is my SPD child, but his main issues have always been mixed textures and things that squish- like tomatoes. For a short time, we had his speech therapist spend a few mins per session working on eating with him, and that made a big difference.

One other thought- I've heard a zinc deficiency can contribute to picky eating. Might be something to look into.

07-07-2012, 05:57 PM
Carrots, I am going through something similar with my son. There are 2 places in MA that I am thinking of taking my son to for feeding therapy if I can't get him to eat more at home this summer. I can pm you the details if you like. My son will drink almost anything so I am going to look into the Vitimax and how to make smoothies at home. I am also not buying his favorite cereals so he has to eat other things. I am not sure if this will work, but its. what I have tried so far.


07-07-2012, 09:40 PM
Currently, my DD (age 7 with autism) is willingly eating-

cheese sandwiches (colby jack cheese on a whole wheat sandwich thin)
corn chips as long as they are not too salty
fruit/yogurt smoothie popscicles
fruit/yogurt smoothie drinks
blueberries (fresh and frozen)
banana bread
some wheat and white breads
whole wheat pancakes
hamburger patties (also on sandwich thins)
hot dogs
corn dogs
green beans
carrots (frozen mixed veggies or raw)
celery (Thank You Wonder Pets!)
corn (either kernel or on the cob)
ice cream
frozen yogurt
some breakfast cereals
french fries
tater tots
pepperoni pizza
plain rice
noodles plain with Parmesan cheese
any type of cookie, cake, cheesecake, muffin, cupcake etc

If I'm lucky I can get her to eat-

breaded chicken strips
Canadian bacon
scrambled eggs

07-08-2012, 10:47 PM
DS had a lot of eating issues when he was young (toddlerhood), which were both sensory and oral-motor related. He couldn't eat any food with pieces until he was around 18 months. Until then he lived on puréed foods, mashed potatoes, applesauce, yogurt, and jarred baby food.

Since then, the sensory issues he has with food are different. They are mostly visual based (how the food is served) and are transient, but recurring. So DS will eat almost anything, as long as it conforms to his rules of presentation. His rules change without any notice and can last weeks or months.

We have dealt with issues like this:

Foods of the same color cannot be on the plate next to each other.
Milk can only be in a blue cup and juice must be in a red cup (also the reverse).
Chicken nuggets, meatballs, and other pieces of meats must be in even numbers.
Vegetables must be in odd numbered pieces.
Plates must have a border or raised edge (alternates with plates cannot have a border).
Round foods (ie peas, meatball, grapes) cannot touch other foods (divided plates are not permitted).
Raisin Bran is the only cereal that gets milk in it.
Raisin Bran must be in a blue bowl, all other cereals in white bowls (alternates with the reverse).
Toast must be cut in 8 equal parts (or four or six or the number of the week).

These "rules" and similar come up and last or weeks or months and then suddenly reverse or are replaced by other rules. It's a lot of trial and error to figure out what the new rules are. It can be maddening to know that DS is perfectly capable of eating a certain food, but I have to try every plate in the house before finding the one he will accept for that food.

07-09-2012, 10:16 PM
We do homemade soups and smoothies in the Vitamix. We also are able to do some fruits and veggies though allergies cause havoc on some of these. Frozen babyfoods are a big treat, along with frozen puddings and yogurts (especially the tube type). We found that it became harder for dc2 when allergies were diagnosed- the fear of a reaction caused complete panic about food added to the lack of control in choosing what would be eaten. At least with the Vitamix I can make soup with protein and veggies and both kids will eat it!