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Can anyone suggest a gluten free meal plan for a 9yr old?(19 Posts)
My 9 year old has suffered ibs like symptoms since he was tiny (maybe from birth, really). He's been seeing the Paediatrician since he was 2. Various tests have been done (negative for Coeliacs - blood test only) and no answers found. He's had no treatment or management suggested. We tried dairy free for two years, which helped for a while but the symptoms steadily returned. He has extremely explosive diahorrea at the end of each day. I'm scared of going gluten free, but I feel like we have to try something.
However, he doesn't like lots of the gf staples and likes lots of gluten full stuff. He doesn't like potatoes (except chips, wedges and occasionally mash). He loves pasta, breakfast cereal and bread, as well as chocolate. He'll eat eggs scrambled and hard boiled, but in no other form.
Can anyone suggest meals, including breakfast, that will be tasty and appealing? I don't want him to feel like he's being punished for having a dodgy stomach .
If blood test for coeliac negative, then it's unlikely they have missed that, possible, but very unlikely, next step would be endoscopy and biopsies, involving a general anaesthetic, which would be extreme given the negative blood test (ds has been there).
Dairy intolerance possible, but at 9 should have stabilised.
Consider seeing a dietician perhaps (sorry if you are doing this already).
There are different types of fibre - soluble and insoluble. They can make a huge difference to someone with your sons' symptoms - porridge is soluble for example, whereas All Bran is insoluble.
IBS sufferers generally cannot tolerate insoluble fibre.
Overall, how is his weight and development? That is what would probably decide for me if I was going to take it further, medically speaking, if either were faltering.
And to answer your question (sorry, got sidetracked thinking about his symptoms!)-
Fruit salad - pineapple, grapes, melon, berries, chopped and served with natural yoghurt (for calories). Avoid bananas, they seem to aggravate IBS, unless you know he's ok with them.
Porridge (if he will eat it) served with honey and cinammon
Meats and cheeses (think continental, works great for IBS sufferers), ham, salami, parma, sliced cheeses to wrap into a roll with the meats.
Move away from the boxed cereals, if his symptoms are made worse by them.
We have seen a dietician, but she just kept deflecting decisions onto us, asking if we thought he should be dairy free/gluten free/trying an elimination diet. If I knew the answers to those questions, I wouldn't have been seeing her!
Development wise he's doing ok. He was quite tall as a toddler, but his height is below the 50th centile now. He is a healthy weight, slim but not skinny (apart from the bloating at the end of each day).
His symptoms are just so horrid. It sounds so painful every day (and makes a terrific mess of the toilet), I'm just struggling to accept that this is something he just has to put up with.
A blood test will show a gluten allergy (celiacs) but doesn't always show a intolerance ( allergy and intolerance are different ) so I think it's worth giving it a try, I did the same with dd1 a few years ago and we did see a difference ( but dd1 couldn't manage without bread so she now has limited gluten ). Gluten snot really good for anyone but little and often is ok.
I forgot to say thank you! I really don't know what makes him worse, as he is the same at the end of pretty much every day. He eats boxed cereal every day (dry, he won't entertain milk on anything, which rules out porridge) and has sandwiches at least once a day, generally. He eats at least three pieces of fruit a day, of a great variety. He likes most cooked deli meats and likes plain cheese (cheddar basically), but he's not keen on Sunday roast type meats (except chicken).
Both my dc's showed up negative for coeliacs but they are both allergic to wheat ( shows up on skin prick)
They have cereal (loads of Kellogg ones are wheat free, rice crispies, cornflakes, oatibix flakes etc), or toast with gf bread or pancakes (really easy to make with gf flour instead of normal floor) and fruit.
Boiled eggs, gf crackers and cheese, soup or sandwiches with gf bread for lunch
Dinner is easy if you make it yourself. We often have shepherds pie, sausages (all asda own brand ones are gf), roast chicken (Bisto best is gf instant gravy!), spag Bol with gf pasta, fish and veg, rice based meals like curry or sweet and sour, jacket potatoes.
Once you get into it, it's pretty easy :-)
Forgot to say they had same symptoms as your son. If they ever accidentally have wheat now they have diarrhoea all evening/night from it
My dd (coeliac) likes the Dove cereal either chocolate stars or chocolate rice crispies ,Sainsbury do the best range IME . GF pasta is very nice we use either Morrisons ,Tesco or Heinz - it's all ok . Of the GF bread she prefers the Tesco own brand fresh but genius and warburtons is ok as a substitute . Dominos gf pizza is the favourite here and if you need a quick drive thru Macdonalds do GF chips and their burgers are also gf . If you look in the freezer section lots of the potato items ie hash browns / waffles are GF and Morrisons and Asda do nice GF meatballs ( fresh not frozen) . M&S do gf breaded chicken steaks and a good variety of gf sausages .
Porridge can be made with water! Add sugar to make it tasty, if necessary. And fruits.
Ok, lots to look at there. Boxed cereals are the work of the devil. Sorry, but they are. Very few are good nutritionally (wholewheat my arse ), and even if they are, if a child is displaying your child's symptoms they need to be cut down until you see what is going on. Try the continental approach to breakfasts - if he likes deli meats, you're onto a winner already.
I have HUGE sympathy, if I sound demented it's because I have been there in this house so much, it frustrates me! my issues, apologies.
The explosive poos sound like intolerance of SOMETHING - either milk proteins or gluten, and you are clearly leaning towards the gluten, as you know him best and what he eats.
Re: dietitians, they are great, well educated and very professional, however in my experience if a child is thriving (as yours clearly is) and there is no underlying clear medical condition, they are at a bit of a loss.
Intolerances are notoriously hard to diagnose, as opposed to allergies, as another poster outlined above. They will generally bat the ball back into the parents court, not unreasonably.
White meats, fish, fruits, plenty of vegetables, lots of fruits juices, is a way that worked in this house. If he doesn't like milk, then yoghurts, ice cream, cheeses, frubes, cheese strings, whatever, to keep the calcium and calories up.
I have a bread maker, and there are lots of gluten free bread recipes in the book which came with it. It's great.
We do GF
Breakfast - gf oats with water (porridge) or boiled eggs or mix egg and banana and fry = pancakes
Pasta alternatives - use a spiraliser and make veggie pasta (ok, it will take some getting used to)
I make chips in advance and freeze or sometimes cut really thin slices but not quite all the way through, oil and season and bake 25 mins - just like chips/wedges
We eat a lot of meat I guess too with rice and veg
I wouldn't bother with the majority of free from stuff in a supermarket - once you read the crap in it, it's far healthier to make your own
Thank you so much everyone, this is really helpful. He was dairy free for two years, prompted by his being massively dairy averse naturally (bar cheese and chocolate!). It helped initially, but the symptoms steadily returned. He is still dairy averse, so won't eat milk, yogurt, ice cream or anything that 'looks milky' ie porridge, custard, rice pudding.
I need to talk it through with him and get him on board, as it'll be tricky with two siblings who aren't following the same diet.
Id just wack everyone on the same diet personally, don't tell them - they may not notice for a while. I don't think DS dad knows the meals I cook for him are GF... He just scoffs it down
It does require a little more cooking and prep but you soon get used to it- and if your doing it for one, you might as well save yourself the time.
Gluten isn't something you NEED
Echo choochootrain1 one eats, they all eat.
Only exception is snacks, others eat crisps, popcorn, crackers, etc which are prepacked and easy, main diet same for us all otherwise.
Who has the time?!
Does he like rice? DH was wheat, dairy, chilli, alcohol & caffeine free for ages (due to temporary intolerance) and so we ate loads of rice. Fried/scrambled egg and rice, special fried rice, pasta sauce but with rice, risotto, paella, uncle ben's microwave rice as a quick snack..turns out we all love rice! You can buy frozen risotto & paella in Lidl or even tesco.
Nachos, prawn crackers and popcorn can often be gluten free.
Bulk up on beans - baked beans or humous (with cucumber or nachos).
Rice crispy chocolate cakes and rice based cereals (rice crispies, Kellogg's shapes). Dark chocolate can be dairy free.
Rice cakes with toppings instead of crackers.
DH liked the WF pasta . Genius WF bread stuff is the nicest, followed by tesco or sainsbury's. GF wraps are especially nice. It's expensive, you don't all have to eat it.
I was put out at first, but we've discovered really tasty stuff and I've lost a stone!!
I could put me and the other children on it, but DH would just not give up bread - not a chance! Main meals wouldn't be quite so bad as with a meat, veg, potato base, DH would think I was just making his favourite stuff.
DC1 does like rice so that can give us another string. I have a bag of quinoa in the cupboard, but I've been too scared to give it a try. Is it similar to cous cous? DC1 loves that.
What about snacks? We tend to have crumpets, tea cakes, hot cross buns or cereal bars. All of which are gluten-y! All three children like the Organix rice cakes, but they're quite expensive. I looked at the snack a Jack type rice cakes last week, but they all had toppings I'd rather avoid (caramel etc).
I love baking and make lots of cakes. I've read that gf flour just doesn't give as nice a result. Any foolproof suggestions?
I have 2 coeliac DCs, so well used to a GF diet. My DCs don't have oats (even GF ones) as the protein in oat is very similar to gluten.
Breakfast - GF cereals, mainly Doves Farm or Natures Path (Kellogs and supermarket own brands tend to have barley malt extract in them so we have to avoid those). GF toast with eggs. Homemade pancakes made with GF flour. Fruit and yogurt.
Lunch - GF pasta, sandwiches with GF bread, omelettes, homemade soup,
Dinners - curry, roast (with homemade Yorkshier puds), homemade fish fingers and chicken goujons, burgers with homemade GF buns, fish cakes, meat/ fish with veg, fajitas with corn tortillas.
There's very little that can't be made GF. Sometimes it's just a case of a simple substitution (eg adding GF flour instead of normal flour to thicken a stew/ shepherds pie or using GF soy sauce) sometimes you need a more specialist recipe (my GF Yorkshire pud recipe has more eggs and less milk than my wheat flour recipe). I make cakes and biscuits and keep them in the freezer, they taste just as good as gluten equivalents, it just takes a bit of trial and error.There's lots of online sites with great recipes - I collect recipes on Pinterest. For snacks we have rice cakes, nuts, fruit, yogurt, tortilla chips, homemade GF crackers and scones.
I had a GF choc cake made with almond flour once, it was Amazing - am drooling thinking about it. LIDL also do rice cakes.
Snacks are difficult - you always need to plan ahead on a GF diet and take snacks with you.
When you're eating out, Chinese, sushi, nandos, kebab (with chips no bread) are easiest.
Corn is my emergency gluten-free food. Eg tortilla chips. Most gluten free pasta is made from corn or rice. Poppadums are made from gram flour. Rice noodles available for stir fries (also buckwheat noodles).
However, you don't really need to replace gluten in the long term. It has no health benefits anyway so it shouldn't be mourned (I appreciate tho it's v convenient and in everything) Vile, poisonous stuff.
Have you tried a slow cooker? Great for curries, casseroles, stews etc. no gluten needed as can have with rice/tats/veg. Have you tried sweet potato/squash/plantain and other tropical starchy veg like cassava, yams etc?
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