I struggle with a picky eater…really struggle. The list of foods on E’s approved list are very few with very little variety. We are down to practically 1 fruit and 1 veggie that he will eat consistently…apples and corn…frustrated does not even come close to describing how I feel. I have been purusing sites like 1oo Days of Real Food and my registered dietician friend Kelli’s site…I have wonderful intentions in my mind, but translating them into a healthy variety of foods that E will eat…well, it seems nearly impossible. I am on the edge of both insanity and clearing out EVERY BIT OF JUNK FOOD and starting over. I worry about what will E eat if there is nothing but REAL food in the house…will he starve himself? Will it be a ‘game of chicken’ to see who caves first? I am focusing on E because the other 3 kids eat whatever is in front of them typically…I know 3 out of 4 ain’t bad, but if I could get E to eat 5 different fruits and 5 different veggies, well I wouldn’t be writing this.
For the record, I recently took E for his well check-up…he is perfectly healthy and growing fine. He is on the lean side of the curve, but that is a good thing. Our pediatrician told me that “he wished all of his patients were as healthy as him”, he did discuss eating more of a variety of fruits and veggies with E directly. I will say this for the kid, he will try things…I believe he convinces himself he doesn’t like (insert any number of foods here) before it ever hits his lips. I am persistent…but so is he.
I just read Food Rules by Michael Pollan. It is a very quick read, but I found it extrememly interesting. I am waiting for another of his books, In Defense of Food, to be transferred to my local library. I borrowed Food Rules from the library, but I will be buying a copy ASAP. One thing that struck me was using smaller dishes to eat on. While we were on vacation, at Darling Husband’s family ‘beach house’ (not on the beach, but near the beach), I noticed how small the bowls and glasses were. They are from a LONG time ago…the house has been around since at least the 50s…who knows how old those bowls and glasses are. Those bowls made me wonder if they were big enough to serve cereal to the kids in for breakfast…and the glasses were the size of our ‘kiddie cups’. This got me thinking then…and when I read it in that book, well duh! People didn’t used to consume the mass quantities that we do, so they didn’t need huge dishes. People also didn’t consume so many processed foods…the women cooked all day, literally. I remember visiting my Grandmother in Portugal as a small child…she was plucking the feathers from the chicken we were gonna have for dinner that night…talk about real, unprocessed food! Now, I am not a crazy person…I would not even consider something like that, my point is this was in my lifetime, granted it was in a different country.
I am currently not sold on the “organic” food craze. Organic does not equal free from pesticides…only free from chemical pesticides. From the ‘scratching the surface’ reading I have done, some of the pesticides that are approved for organic farming are quite toxic…to people and the environment, that being said, I have a hard time believing that the organic produce in my local chain grocery stores is any better for the environment than the conventionally grown produce. I have my favorite local produce stands and I have heard about some farmers markets that sound promising. I do buy my ground beef from a local farm, it is really reasonably priced and is 100% grass-fed. I am a firm believer in buying local.
Today’s secret revealed…my biggest fear is the possibility of creating a negativity toward meal times and food. I don’t want to argue and fight about eating, but I want my family to eat better.
And, for the record, this does not stem from how we started out with food…E, being my first born, I put TONS of effort into making him a healthy, well-balanced eater. I bought only organic produce, prepared his fruits and veggies myself, he ate a huge variety…I don’t know where things went so horribly wrong with his food preferences. When children started coming in pairs, I didn’t have the time to go to such efforts…talk about a well-laid plan blowing up in my face!