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The infant feedingas a general rule, it follows some basic patterns that could be used, with minimal nuances (age, sex…), for all children. However, when we add a disease to the equation, be it temporary, such as the flu or diarrhea, or permanent, such as something more chronic such as celiac disease or diabetes, things get complicated. What guidelines should a healthy eating for celiac children?
Even though that him gluten is a protein (present, for example, in wheat, barley or rye), its presence in cereals makes complex carbohydrates the most problematic in the diets of the celiac children. Special attention should be paid to the intake of these carbohydrates, and there should be varied options so that the child maintains a contribution of them.
The complex carbohydrates are one of the most attractive sources of energy in childhood, on the one hand, due to their ability to generate small units of monosaccharides (glucose, the brain's food) in the body and, on the other, because by allowing a controlled release of this Glucose helps the child not have energy ups and downs.
Taking these premises into account, we will now detail which are the most recommended routines or eating habits for a child with celiac disease.
1. Mark number of meals
5 or 6 meals a day should be established, so that the intake is distributed in a balanced way, without skipping any. The first should be when getting up, before going to school, and the last at least an hour before going to sleep, so that the child does part of the digestion before going to bed.
2. The importance of breakfast
To begin with, breakfast is essential, both to perform at school (energy for the brain) and to have physical energy for the rest of the day.
Breakfast, ideally, should include carbohydrates, and if the child tolerates oatmeal, this cereal is great both as a source of energy and for the beneficial properties of its components. Foods such as cookies, industrial pastries or soluble cocoa should be avoided, not only because of their gluten content but because of the sugar they contain.
3. Fruit and nuts for mid-morning
In the middle of the morning, a piece of fruit or some nuts, combined with some dairy or protein food, will allow the child to regain the energy spent and endure until the next meal. Preferably, both intakes should complement each other.
Be careful with more processed protein foods, such as cold cuts, and carefully examine the labeling for gluten, or avoid them altogether. Also, it is advisable to buy packaged nuts instead of in bulk and check that they do not contain traces of gluten.
4. Calcium, an essential
Calcium intake is very important for bone growth and to ensure good bone density, so dairy products should not be lacking in the diet of celiac children.
Yogurts are, being fermented, extraordinarily useful in the diet of these children, since they provide beneficial bacteria to strengthen the intestinal microflora. Intestinal villi suffer the most from gluten intake, and these bacteria provide good protection as well as extra help for their recovery after exposure to gluten.
Of course, it is convenient avoid flavored yogurts and even fruit and limited to natural ones, to avoid traces of gluten or possible cross contamination.
5. Complete dishes
The meal does not have to include three courses, but it must be complete, including combinations of the main food groups: vegetables, fruits and vegetables (source of vitamins and minerals), meat, fish, eggs or legumes (source of protein from high quality) and preferably whole grains or potatoes (source of complex carbohydrates).
Combinations of legumes with gluten-free cereals they get a quality protein similar to that of foods of plant origin.
6. Always water
Children should drink water, either during meals or between meals. Both juices and any type of sugary or carbonated drinks should be avoided.
7. Include fish at least 3 times a week
The fatty acid profile of fish, and especially oily fish, is very interesting in childhood, as it ensures good brain health and active and resolute neural connections.
8. Avoid fried
Even if they are not battered, the mere fact of sharing the fryer with a food that contains gluten can make an outbreak possible.
9. Have an early dinner and a light dinner
There are compounds within some foods that induce relaxation in some way, being ideal for consumption before going to sleep. For example, eggs, milk, meat or fish all contain one or more of these compounds, such as tryptophan, vitamin B6 or magnesium.
10. Pure chocolate, your prize!
The celiac children They need an incentive. Choose chocolate, but the purer the better. Milk chocolate can contain traces of gluten, so the higher its cocoa percentage, the less likely it is to contain gluten. Also, white and milk chocolates contain very unhealthy amounts of sugar.
11. Avoid sweets
Unfortunately, not only because of its sugar content, the main enemy of healthy teeth, and the main cause of obesity, but also because of the presence of gluten, celiac children cannot and should not eat sweets.
12. Educate and support him from a young age
One of our main tasks, as parents of a child with an allergy or a food intolerance, is to teach them from the moment the disease is diagnosed which foods or foods they can eat and which ones they cannot, especially when they eat away from home.
Some establishments have menus for celiacs and in many cases it is obvious which ones to reject, but it is important to bear in mind that there are foods that may contain masked gluten, such as meatballs, hamburgers, or hot dogs.
Learning this is vital for their health and well-being, and also for our peace of mind, because we will not always be by their side to monitor and choose the food for them.
You can read more articles similar to 12 healthy eating habits for celiac children, in the category of Allergies and intolerances on site.