In the world of special needs kids, there are a lot of factors that influence their bodies. Chemicals. Preservatives. Additives. Gluten. Casein. Fragrances… just to name a few. I our world, with gluten sensitivities and Celiac, we have to watch how much sugar we have.
With a gluten intolerance, if gluten is ingested, it damages the tiny villi hairs in the small intestine ~ the very hairs that break down sugars to digest properly on their very tips. If there are no tips of hairs, or they have been damaged, sugars affect the body more. Because of this, I highly limit the amount of sugar my kids have. They rarely have regular sugar, high fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, or any of the processed sugar or sugar substitues that are high on the glycemic index and can cause nasty reactions in their little bodies.
When we first converted to be a gluten-free family, there were several things we almost immediately had to deal with. Birthday parties. Parties at school. Treats given out by teachers during testing season.
There were plenty of times for my kids to be exposed to and given sugary treats.
However, because of educating them and telling them why their tummies were hurting after having too much once in awhile, they are now the first to ask me or their dad if it’s ok and if they can have it. They don’t want their tummies to hurt just as much as me. They have learned that asking and avoiding is much better than being buckled over in pain afterwards.
As a mom, though, you don’t want them to miss out on the fun, proud accomplishments, and celebrations along with the other kids. So, one day I had a brilliant idea! Why not give the tooth fairy a sister?! And so the “Candy Fairy” was developed.
My kids know exactly what to avoid now, and if there is any question about it, they still avoid it. However, they know that they are still allowed to accept it (be thankful & not hurt someone else’s feelings by refusing it and having to explain being gluten-free and how it ties to sugar). They bring it home, and if it’s enough candy to warrant the Candy Fairy coming, than she arrives that night to exchange the candy for books, movies, toys, money, etc… whatever she feels like bringing them that night.
Believe it or not, money has been one of the biggest hits since they knew they could spend it on what THEY wanted! So far, the kids have been happy with everything the Candy Fairy has brought to them.
Of course, if they only bring home 3 pieces of candy, it’s not worth a visit until some more can be collected. However, if it’s a crazy candy day, like Valentine’s Day, the Candy Fairy MUST plan her arrival in advance.
Feel free to have your own Candy Fairy come visit your house for anything that your children must avoid or not participate in. It makes them feel special and included, yet they still understand the benefits of them not having that item they must avoid. Children are resilient, as long as you explain, find solutions, and still love, care, and support them in their healing.
Do you have any helpful tricks up your sleeve that have worked well for your kids in providing them an alternative to something that wasn’t good for them?
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Jessica Stone is a wife, mom to 4, and owner of her own businesses in the fitness and essential oils industries. She has 3 special needs children, one which has an undiagnosed neuro-muscular condition that limits her mobility, and her twins are currently receiving therapy for sensory defensiveness, physical mobility, fine motor skills, and speech. She enjoys sharing what she has learned through her trials, experience, research, and tools that have helped her children’s health with other parents who are looking for support, encouragement, and helpful information. Get her FREE eBooklet Five Steps to Losing Those Last 10 Pounds today for simple steps to help you trim up and fit into those fashionable clothes you’ve always wanted to wear! Connect with Jess live today on Facebook!