Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Food Chain Basics

Okay, so my kids aren't that picky, as it turns out. After reading the book Food Chaining, I can appreciate that my kids' habits are more annoying than alarming.

Food Chaining is written by Cheryl Fraker, a parent, and a bunch of doctors who specialize in serious food disorders in children, many of them with autism spectrum disorders. These are kids who will only eat two or three foods and are not gaining weight. The book's "Proven Six-Step Plan" involves building on the foods the kids like. So if the kid will only eat McDonald's french fries, then you would offer the kid Wendy's fries, then homemade fries, then hash browns, then roasted potatoes.

Okay, sure. I'll try it. I mean, when my kids were in the depths of their food aversions, I would have had to pry their mouths open to get them to try something even one degree off from what they were expecting. But, always when I was least expecting it, we'd have little victories. So, yeah, I'm putting this one in my bag of tricks.

It reminds me of a child I know who only eats one brand of fish stick. So, why not offer her a different brand of fish stick? Just open up her a palate a teensy bit? and then a still different-er one. And then a homemade one. And then a breaded fish filet. And so on.

Here's an interview with one of the writers. The book mostly addresses autism issues, but there is info in there for all of us. Nothing about bribery, but lots of other tactics.

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