Monday, January 23, 2012

Food for thought

One of the things I mentioned yesterday was that my current project with Tera is trying to get her to drink from a straw cup.  For those of you confused right now, I was where you are at one point.  I literally thought someone meant a cup made out of straw and I was thoroughly baffled.  I'll add here that it was still a very emotional time for me and I'll claim mental distress, but really it's just a cup with a straw (and if you got that and are wondering how I could have missed it, I'll mention again the mental distress).  Anyway, since Tera is kind of on a bottle strike, I'm determined to get her to be able to drink from something!

But a few of our other "Tera projects" right now are related to food.  One, we are trying like hell to get her to put food in her own mouth.  Honestly, this kid will put anything BUT food in her mouth.  In fact last night, much to our amazement, she actually put a piece of plastic play bread in her mouth and then rolled around while licking it! But put a handful of rice puffs in her hands and all she does is open her mouth and wait for somebody to put one in.  I'm thinking I may try pudding next week and see how her hands feel in that. 

On top of just trying to get her to put food in her own mouth, we're investigating what we can give her.  At her 9 month appointment her doctor gave us the green light to start trying table foods.  One of the problems was that she didn't, and still doesn't, have any teeth so we had to wait until she was a little more proficient with her gums.  Well now she's a gumming champ and she's liked pretty much everything we've given her.  The challenge has been trying to find foods that have some sort of nutritional value.  Tom and are very healthy eaters, we have our bad days like everyone else, but we're very conscious of what we choose for Tera.  We try to focus on baby foods that have only one or two ingredients (peas: peas and water) instead of a bunch of added stuff for color or preservation.  We also try and choose foods that are high in vitamins, antioxidants, and protein like peas and green beans, squash, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, bananas, apples, pears, blueberries, chicken, and turkey.  We try and stay away from foods that have corn and rice because they're really just filler.  Even meats like ham don't really offer much nutritionally compared to chicken, turkey, and fish (which is on the menu for tomorrow).  That's not to say she hasn't tasted some pieces of cookie, whip cream, ice cream, and recently, a cannoli, but we're talking about tastes, not whole servings.  I'm not about to become some kind of nazi food mom, but I want her to be able to make good choices.  I wasn't allowed to have a lot of different kinds of treats when I was kid, like pretty much anything from Little Debbie or Hostess, but when I was old enough to buy it on my own I discovered I really didn't like them. 

The way I see it is my little girl is going to have to fight for enough, I'm going to make sure she has a healthy diet to do it.  Now, will I say no if she asks for ice cream after dinner when she's old enough to want it? Probably not, but it won't happen every day and it won't be something that happens until she's finished everything else she is supposed to.  I'm not naive enough to think she won't ever eat fast food; we do.  But it won't be regular and she'll understand that it's a treat and there are better choices available. 

That's my stance on healthy eating.  I'm sure I'll have more to say about it at a later date...

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