Thursday, December 8, 2011

Taste a Rainbow

okay... so I am posting this via the request of my naturapathic Dr. for Bjorn.... He has asked me to do this because of the ideas that I have for Bjorn and his eating habits (due to his Autism~ SID).

It is a tad bit hard for me to remember how far back we started doing all of this because we had always struggled with his eating..... but also, I have always worked hard to get nutrition into my boys so that their bones and bodies grow.

We ate like a standard family early on. A few crock pot meals, a few home cooked meals, a few take outs, a few prepackaged deals....
and then I was diagnosed with cancer..... my boys were 2 1/2 and 6 months....
Bjorn hadnt started solids yet, but from birth, he struggled with digestive issues with all formulas (I could breast feed him~ seeing as he is adopted)

during my fight with cancer I read this pamphlet..... Rub a Dub... is Cancer in your Tub... and I began thinking about things~ Things we put in our bodies, on our bodies, and surround ourselves with. Yes, I went a little "cookooo"..... yes, I went "off the deep end" at times..... but, a ball got rolling..... towards wellness and awareness. I started reading. I stared researching. I started moving in a direction that I knew was a good thing.

So my boys were young when healthier home cooked foods were introduced.... which may have been a good thing for our family.... I removed everything from our house, and brought things back in..... with each thing that came in I asked the questions Does this benefit wellness? and Does this simplify things? Is this truly good for us (physically, emotionally, and spiritually)?

so, the topic of this post is TASTE A RAINBOW.
Meals became about rainbow foods..... the kids were interested in colors.... so we made foods about colors..... we put a picture of rainbows on the table, on the window near by and on the cloth napkins.... RAINBOWS WERE EVERYWHERE DURING MEAL TIME.

Bjorn's eating at the time was limited to only 5-10 bites a day.... that is it. each bite he took~ I knew had to be one that benefited his body.... so that was where my battle started. Other parents of autistic children have other battles- some only eat white foods. some only eat carbs. some only eat three differing foods (mac and cheese, crackers and hot dogs).
We all have struggles..... but it is how we deal with those struggles that make or break us.... right??? Its when a child is autistic that we, as parents, feel more broken than the other way around.

(stay on track tif... or we'll be here all day!)
so back to the rainbow....

so I took some felt and cut them into strips on the table by Bjorn's chair ..... in the color form of a rainbow.... red orange yellow green blue and purple..... (much like this one)

every bite that Bjorn had~ it had to be the colors of the rainbow..... If for breakfast he had Berries and bread..... Blue, red and yellow were taken away. If for lunch he had apple, banana and cucumber..... red, yellow and green were taken away. Dinners were the time that there was always a salad~ with greens of chopped kale and spinach, and orange with carrots, and purple was for raisins. I also became really great at hiding veggies in things.....
so, if he needed to eat a purple.... he could eat a brownie, or cupcake (with beets hidden in it)

Beets can get hid in everything!!!! spaghetti sauce, brownies, muffins....
squash, apples, sweet potatoes and pumpkins are good hiding foods too.....

yes, we had fits/rages. yes, we had protests. yes, we had food strikes. yes, I was in tears at times. But.... it was a consistent thing we did. Every day.... we did the rainbow.
Every day he battled with it. Every mealtime was unpredictable......
until one day.... we had one bite success. then soon a two bite success. weeks later- three, four, five.....
months later~ he started to get into the habit. it became routine. it became life.

now I am not saying we dont still struggle..... please dont think that I am implying that.....
but, we have choices now.
he eats now. 10 bites per day became 10 bites per meal. He then had to eat 4 bites of each served item.... now he has to eat all colors on his plate.
5 years into this~
the rainbow idea has changed.... and grew into other ideas....

but it all started with a rainbow.... a rainbow that changed my son's life.

other ideas:::
use rainbow colored felt balls (like these ) in a jar~ so as the child eats a color- put a colored ball in the jar. At the end of the day~ they see the colors they ate!

make tissue rainbow flowers on a stick (like this) . as the child eats a color- have then put a flower in a vase on the table.

rainbow decorations::
tablecloth, napkins, banners, window clings..... you can really have fun!

for help on what food work for what colors click here....


  1. I LOVE THIS! You are brilliant, loving and extremely creative. Thank you for sharing this!

  2. Great information and great strategy.