While I’m hardly the first person to write a recipe on how to prepare steel-cut oatmeal, the way I prepare it has evolved over the years to fit my son’s sensory aversions to certain food textures. Like him, many children with ADHD and SPD (Sensory Processing Disorder) have difficulty with certain tastes, texture and smells. Because eating is such a multi-sensorial experience, one of the ways I try to minimize nutritional deficiencies is to include whole foods with various textures and flavors as much as possible.
Her son was diagnosed with ADHD/NOS at age five. She was determined not to use medication for personal reasons and tried hard to tame those life-disrupting ADHD behaviors, such as lack of focus, impulse, anger, irrational blowouts, lack of school interest, and social difficulties. She offered him opportunities to develop his body physically and mentally with enrichment classes, sports, nature explorations, herbal concoctions, vitamins, probiotics, therapy, nutrient-dense foods, plenty of sleep, together time, social connections, and alternative therapies. However, all this effort was like playing a game of whack-a-mole—something would work for a while until it didn’t. In the span of two years, her son was also observed for Oppositional Defiance Disorder and Aspergers, which were eventually dropped. She spent a great deal of time trying to crack the code of her son’s ADHD, trying to find that one thing that would keep ADHD from disrupting his life too much so he could grow up and blossom into his full potential. The offer for medication was always on the table, offered by the behavioral therapist as the possible “missing piece”. However, mom wasn’t done figuring it out. She didn’t accept that ADHD was just about brain chemistry. There was more to it, she just didn’t know what it was, but she was sure there was more to it.
One of the strategies for jump-starting the ADHD brain is to have a protein-rich breakfast. That’s a challenge for people racing to get to school and work on time at the tune of Mission Impossible in their heads. Wait, is that just me? Well, I’m in no way Ethan Hunt—I’m really more like Maxwell Smart, so don’t judge. All I can say is that I try, TRY, to have some things ready to go—like breakfast.
If there’s one thing you should know about me is that, when it comes to household chores, cleaning, organizing, and decorating, I suck out loud at all things related to keeping a tidy home. Of course, it doesn’t help that we live in a small apartment and that my “bedroom” is a multipurpose room that functions as an office, dining area, TV room, reading space, play area and bedroom. And then, there are projects and Legos… But it hasn’t been all that bad—my son’s room has always been the more organized space in the apartment. I’m giving you all this unsolicited information so you’re not judgy of what I’m about to share with you. In my defense, I blame the many goodie bags and crappy toys that overstay their visit by at least 5 years. Also, a death in the family can claim at least an entire closet for a loved one’s belongings.
Kids with SPD usually struggle with eating because it’s such a multi-sensory experience. A child with sensory processing issues has difficulties with food textures, flavors, and smells because they can be overwhelming. I think it’s ok to offer veggies processed in different ways other than just cooking in order to keep things varied.
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I'm a single mom, graphic designer, crunchy mama, trekkie geek, life warrior. It's embarrassing how excited I get about food. I'm an expert in barefoot Lego fire walk.
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