Parents of children with special needs often have to battle with the overwhelming feeding and nutritional challenges that are commonly present with such children. Each individual situation is different, however, depending on the child’s specific condition there are various issues which come into play. For example, children with Down Syndrome normally have low muscle tone or bone issues, which in turn makes it harder for them to keep their weight down. Sugary, high processed foods can be extremely detrimental to their health as it packs on more fat. On the other hand, there are children who are underweight due to a number of reasons tied to their condition which could include difficulty swallowing, having negative reactions to different food colors or textures, or a fast metabolism. Whatever the issue may be, it can turn into a whole family effort to get the child to eat well and just enough to meet their nutritional requirements.
Sarah Hunt, a Holistic Nutritionist, points out: “These children can often have a negative relationship with food due to various issues. Many of the ingredients in processed and fast foods can worsen the problems that they are already experiencing.” The goal is to try and turn the eating experience into a positive one and this will require a lot of experimentation and trial and error until the parents can find the right foods in the right form which is enjoyed by the child.
Hunt advises, “Once we learn to focus on a healthy diet full of nutrient dense food, this alone can allow children to experience a greater quality of life. When we begin to adapt eating patterns to support their nutritional needs, we can see a big change in their behaviors. By removing certain things in the diet such as food colorings, additives, sugar and dyes, this brings the whole family into a healthier state”.
Figuring out just what your child needs is not something that needs to be done alone. There is a lot of information out there, many different opinions and tons of advice people like to give, and this can get very overwhelming. This is why, we at Hissah Enrichment Center, have tailored a dynamic workshop to address this topic so that parents who are concerned about the nutritional needs and health of their child with special needs can get all the information and help they need. In this workshop, conducted by expert Nutritionist Sarah Hunt, you will gain by learning how to make good food choices for your entire family, specific nutrition requirements for various special conditions, weekly menu planning to ensure your child is getting the right number of vitamins and minerals, focusing on overall brain health for healthy cognitive functioning, and much more. All your nutritional concerns for your child with special needs will be answered in this 4 and ½ hour workshop.
Please refer to our flyers below for further information and visit our website www.hissahec.com for registration details. We hope to see you there!