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Why is offering lots of unhealthy, processed foods considered a "loving" gesture?

post #1 of 85
Thread Starter 
I am so frustrated with (and ashamed of) what my 3yo son has been eating the past few weeks. We've been on vacation. We've eaten out a ton and eaten at the homes of various family members. I don't mind a little Mac and Cheese here and there, especially if there's nothing else on offer that he'll eat but it's getting ridiculous. We're currently at my mom and dad's place (2 more days) and every time I turn around, DS is being offered cake, cookies, boxes Mac and cheese, candy, ice cream, low fat conventional dairy, etc. And then when I say "no", I'm the meanie. They're offering my precious child foods that will do damage to his body and *I'm* the mean one?! Can vacation be over now, please?
post #2 of 85

I know how tough that is.  Honestly.... you are always going to be the mean one, sorry.  Personally, I do not mind.  I get teased all the time.  We actually take a basket of our own grub while visiting, etc. 

 

If you stand your ground, express your concern, my hope is your family and friends will respect your wishes.  If not, for me, it would be hard to stay with them.  I cannot respect folks that do not respect me, KWIM?  They should really respect your choices for your child.  Who cares if you are the mean one! 

 

Good luck eat.gif

post #3 of 85

I feel the same way about my family we are about to visit. My grandma adds sweet-n-low to everything (vegetables included) and eats lots of conventional meat, boxed foods etc. I do my best to explain and avoid. What bothers me more is when people say "once he gets the good stuff he won't eat this junk anymore!" UGH

post #4 of 85

I am SO with you! When we are gets I don't mind DD eating not-so healthy but when it's just junk food for no reason UGH

 

We went to MILs the other day and she made steaks on the grill with way over cooked mush cauliflower and MSG laden yellow rice...as if that wasn't all bad enough(all conventional of course)...then she's trying to give her a pop (frozen corn syrup in a tube) I told her no and she flipped out saying "kids are SUPPOSE to eat pops, ice cream, and junk food you know" Really they are suppose to eat that? My DD will eat a bowl of kale before she will eat ice cream...

post #5 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by mommy212 View Post

I feel the same way about my family we are about to visit. My grandma adds sweet-n-low to everything (vegetables included) and eats lots of conventional meat, boxed foods etc. I do my best to explain and avoid. What bothers me more is when people say "once he gets the good stuff he won't eat this junk anymore!" UGH



I don't understand..... why would you add sweet n low to anything... let alone veggies???

 

 

 

I get this though. Now, we aren't super, super strict but there are certain things I don't budge on.. I'm always the mean one ;)

 

post #6 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamaecho View Post





I don't understand..... why would you add sweet n low to anything... let alone veggies???

 

 

 

I get this though. Now, we aren't super, super strict but there are certain things I don't budge on.. I'm always the mean one ;)

 



I've heard of people adding sugar to corn to "bring out the sweetness." Guess Sweet & Low would be used for the same reason? 

 

I tried it once, putting sugar in the corn. It just...didn't make sense to me. Tasted like corn with sugar added. shrug.gif

 

I'm not even sure why I tried it. Curious I guess. 

post #7 of 85

On topic, we had trouble with both the grandmas and ds#1. They were constantly trying to give him food way too early, then it was all about how he NEEDED to have candy, jelly, cake, cookies,etc. and I was depriving him...and we weren't even THAT strict/healthy, just we weren't giving him junk food or sweets. 

 

One time we left ds#1 with grandma p and told her to please not give him any chocolate ( it made him HYPER.) When we got back from our date, she told us she had given him FIVE chocolate chip cookies and she would NEVER do that again. That she had thought the whole thing about him getting hyper from chocolate was all in my head...until she saw it for herself and had to deal with it. She was much better after that about being careful what she offered him. wink1.gif

post #8 of 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by sosurreal09 View Post

I am SO with you! When we are gets I don't mind DD eating not-so healthy but when it's just junk food for no reason UGH

 

We went to MILs the other day and she made steaks on the grill with way over cooked mush cauliflower and MSG laden yellow rice...as if that wasn't all bad enough(all conventional of course)...then she's trying to give her a pop (frozen corn syrup in a tube) I told her no and she flipped out saying "kids are SUPPOSE to eat pops, ice cream, and junk food you know" Really they are suppose to eat that? My DD will eat a bowl of kale before she will eat ice cream...



Off topic... you went back to our Dad's house? 

 

We make our own ice cream... occasionally, I am talking maybe once every two months!  I wish my kiddo would prefer chips if both were presented! ... we do make kale chips that he loves, staple in our home... just made chard ones this evening... yummy!  ... no potato chips here! 

 

Edited---meant to say preferred chips! 


Edited by goldenwillow - 7/15/11 at 7:51am
post #9 of 85

OP, I feel your pain!!  I am SO particular about what DD eats, and I get teased CONSTANTLY about it.  My parents will even bring it up in front of other people just to embarass me.  I get called mean for not taking my 17 month old to Dairy Queen, or for not giving her suckers when we go to the bank, and not giving her candy when a friend offers her some....  It is so frustrating and it happens all the time.  I dont like going anywhere because it seems like it is always a battle.  When we go on trips I take a cooler full of our own food and I make sure that I know where the closest health foods store is, if there is one.  I also take a jar of organic peanut butter, organic whole grain crackers to dip in it, organic bananas, you name it.   Relatives and friends think I am crazy, but heck my daughter is the only one who does not have a mouth full of cavities and fillings, and who is not sick all the time.

post #10 of 85

I've recently come to terms with the idea that there are people out there who subsist on junk food 24/7. Generations of children grew up eating breakfast cereal every.single day. and in many cases it was the healthiest meal of the day. So, we are careful at home, generally speaking, to eat as much homemade whole, organic food as we can. But when we're at Nana's or when Grandma comes to visit and brings "treats" - let the good times roll! partytime.gif Barring food allergies, exposure to junk in the short term is likely doing less damage than the stressful circumstances surrounding picky eating are...sulkoff.gif

post #11 of 85
Thread Starter 
And see, if it were a once in a while day here and there, that's one thing. But we've been away from home since June 30. He just can't eat crap for 2 weeks straight. And we don't just see Grandma once a year or anything. We have 3 grandmothers within a 2 hour radius. We see one (or all) of them at least once a month, often for a week at a time. I am fine with occasional treats but for example, last night we were at my Grandma's house for supper. Wednesday was her birthday and there was cake leftover. DS asked for a piece and I said "no" because it was one of those colored boxed mix cakes and one thing I am pretty unbending about is food dye. So then, my Grandma offered DS a brownie. I said "yes" to the brownie. Then she offered a second brownie. I said "no". Then she offered a cookie. "No". The she brought out a different kind of cookie package and told me to read the ingredients to see if he could have those instead. Where's the headbanging smilie?? orngtongue.gif
post #12 of 85

No no no that is DH's mom! Yes both sides of our family are horrendous...

Quote:

Originally Posted by goldenwillow View Post





Off topic... you went back to our Dad's house? 

 

We make our own ice cream... occasionally, I am talking maybe once every two months!  I wish my kiddo would prefer ice cream if both were presented! ... we do make kale chips that he loves, staple in our home... just made chard ones this evening... yummy!  ... no potato chips here! 



 

post #13 of 85


I totally feel you we stayed at a friends for a week as a favor to her (her and DH broke up she wanted support) and we ate crap absolute crap all week. I felt gross, DD felt gross, and we both ended up getting a bad virus after. My body could not handle all the sugar and processed stuff, neither could DD's she had the runs all week...and even that wasn't like candy but more like goldfish crackers, rits bits, and conventional stuff.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ~Amy~ View Post

And see, if it were a once in a while day here and there, that's one thing. But we've been away from home since June 30. He just can't eat crap for 2 weeks straight. And we don't just see Grandma once a year or anything. We have 3 grandmothers within a 2 hour radius. We see one (or all) of them at least once a month, often for a week at a time. I am fine with occasional treats but for example, last night we were at my Grandma's house for supper. Wednesday was her birthday and there was cake leftover. DS asked for a piece and I said "no" because it was one of those colored boxed mix cakes and one thing I am pretty unbending about is food dye. So then, my Grandma offered DS a brownie. I said "yes" to the brownie. Then she offered a second brownie. I said "no". Then she offered a cookie. "No". The she brought out a different kind of cookie package and told me to read the ingredients to see if he could have those instead. Where's the headbanging smilie?? orngtongue.gif


 

post #14 of 85

on the topic of why she adds sweet-n-low... she is saving calories. Personally I would rather have the extra calories from the sugar than the fake chemically junk of sweet-n-low

post #15 of 85

I can see once in a great while.  I mean, I make my own homemade treats like pies, cookies, cake... But all organic, and I use some whole wheat flour instead of all white, and dont use the full amount of added sugar.. And DD gets some of that, but only after she has eaten a healthy meal, and she does not get it all day long, or not even every day.  If she has already had some and someone offers her more, I say no, and of course I'm the meanest parent in the world...  Anyway, just frustrating.  And yes, whenever any of us eat out or eat conventional food we all get the runs, DD gets a diaper rash instantly, and we often get sick afterwards.  Not just coincedence!!   I do not want that for my family, so I have another reason to say no

post #16 of 85

I don't mind DS getting stuff like that at my in-laws because at my parents house he doesn't get any junk except for holidays and even then it's natural versions of "junk" food. So, it's about every 2-4 weeks he gets chocolate milk and candy and the inlaws. That's it. So it's not a big deal to me. My biggest problem is that DH is the junk food junkie, but he sees how DS reacts to it and does his best to do his junk-food eating away from the house(I don't like that he eats crappy either, but he's a big boy, and can make his own decisions, lol).

post #17 of 85

MIL did something similar around Easter. We left DS with her overnight and came back and he had eaten a ton of Hershies Kisses and she was wondering why he was so hyper. DUH! If your kids don't live on sugar every day, of course they are going to be sensitive to it when they get it! She also left it on the counter where he could reach it. I would have put it in a cabinet high up if I knew he could reach it. Oy....

post #18 of 85

I did a thread on this same thing awhile back:  http://www.mothering.com/community/forum/thread/1308013/update-wwyd-mil-wants-1-y-o-to-eat-sweets-and-chocolate

 

It is frustrating.  I know I am a control freak over what goes into my precious LO's mouth...but that's my right.  DH is fortunately on board, but I get all kinds of looks and comments from EVERYONE, including my good friends.  I was recently asked "what's so bad about red #40?" by a good friend who honestly didn't know.  I explained that, to my knowledge, it was a carcinogen.  She was raised with only processed food for the most part and eats them exclusively now.  She has awesome intentions and is just not educated about food.

 

One of my big hesitations and reasons I won't leave DS with MIL is I know she will give him bad stuff behind our backs and not be honest about it.  I watched her do it with our nephew who had food allergies (but she gave him cow milk "because he needed it" even though he's allergic to milk protein).

 

I hope when I'm a MIL I will be able to follow whatever my DIL comes up with as important to her...but who knows?  We all have our soapboxes and think we are right!

post #19 of 85

You are right PP, that is your right!  I think that our friends and relatives ought to respect that, it is not like we are doing something bad, in fact it is the complete opposite!!  They are our precious little ones, and of course we want what is absolutely best for them!

 I have a friend, she is my next door neighbor, and her son is the same age as DD.  He has been sick and on different medications almost constantly since he was weaned from the breast at 6 months.  This is also when she started giving him candy, ice cream, any kind of junk food including hot dogs and processed foods and freezer meals that she could.  What partially saved him is that he was still on baby food fruits and veggies, although he got the Gerber mac and cheese almost daily as well!!  But since he has been off of baby food I dont think he has eaten a single vegetable, and only a few peices of fruit here and there.  He was on store bought cows milk before 1yr old, and has been constipated and sick with the flu and colds and bronchitis ever since.  Watching how this friend feeds her poor child (he has a sucker in his hand almost every time I see them) it just makes my heart ache, and I have tried to talk to her, but she says "my doctor did not tell me to feed him vegetables so I dont have to, it must not be necessary."  AHHH, and this brings me to the state of our messed up medical system....  That is another subjuct I will not even get in to right now. 

This poor little guy has actually made my husband a believer.  DH used to think I was ridiculous for not allowing DD to have junk food, and feeding her all organic, and now he is so on board after seeing how that little boy is always sick like that.

An example of my friends complete ignorance when it comes to food is- as soon as her son could chew little pieces of bread (about 8 months old) she stopped feeding him baby cereal and instead fed him Eggo toaster waffles drenched in Mrs Butterworths(almost pure high fructose corn syrup) "maple syrup" and then rolled her eyes at me because I was still feeding DD "that baby food".  She said "waffles are a grain just like that baby cereal is, he is getting everything he needs from these".  I tried to explain to her that they were made out of bleached white flour(NOT whole grain) and had preservatives and were processed, and how bad the syrup was (in a very nice way of course) but she acted as if she did not even hear me and just said "Uh huh" and that was it. 

After months of doing this, and her son being so extremely constipated, and going to the Dr numerous times, at about 1 year old she asked me what to do (she was giving him prunes every day and it was not even helping and he would only poop once a week or less), I said try switching back to baby cereal, mix it with yogurt, and she did!  And it did help a lot....  UGH

post #20 of 85

I literally know someone who's DD is 5 y/o and eats junk and is constantly constipated like PP mentioned and they literally give her a supository every 3 days! They are considering a colostomy bag, yet when I suggested probiotics they flipped out and said "she drinks cows milk and eats yogurt that's all she needs for probitoics it's IN her food!" Like I was an idiot....poor kid. Her I am spending $30 a month on probiotics we can't afford for DD to help heal her from a vax reaction and someone is considering a colostomy bag and won't even TRY it! They said the Dr said it was pointless...and they were too expensive to "just try" with no medical advice on it or a prescription....

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