Guest writer Margaret Conner of The Wellness Pantry shares her story of their third grade son going gluten-free. I just love how mature he is about his journey and why he’s happy to be allergy-free. It sounds a lot like my little guy too! So read on to see what it’s like to live gluten and dairy free, straight from a 3rd graders mouth!
The Truth about Going Gluten-free, in the 3rd grade. Yep, we are taking you behind the scenes and heading to the source: the gluten-free 3rd grader. Since I often get asked by clients what it’s like to transition your kid to a gluten-free diet, I decided to interview my son a year or so after he’d gone gluten-free in the 3rd grade.
Here is what he shared:
1. What was it like to switch to a gluten-free diet? Was it hard to change what you ate?
Well it was hard at first with my sister in front of me eating stuff I couldn’t. It takes some getting used to, I think the worst part was that I had already tasted the Ice cream and the Pizza. Our house is gluten-free and pretty much dairy-free so its easier to not feel bad about missing gluten if I’m at home.
Though it also took some time and they developed more food that was gluten-free my mom found a lot of it. So now it’s a lot easier because I can get my gluten-free pizza and etc., though I still want some gluten once in a while.
2. What is it like at school and around your friends when you may not eat the same sorts of food they do?
Well it was really similar to my family, it took some getting used to. It started out terrible with all my best best friends eating not gluten-free things and then you’ve got to tell them. Thinking they’ll think you’re some weirdo. It’s very tempting to not mention it and eat all gluten things, but it actually went down well with my friends instead of thinking that I’m a weirdo they actually had sympathy that I became gluten-free.
3. What are some of the things that have made you stick to eating this way?
Because they make me feel bad
4. What are some of your favorite things to eat now?
Usually types of meat and fruits + vegetables. I also like these special chicken fingers but if you look around in small special sections in grocery stores you may find some good things.
5. Is it hard to stick to eating this way? Why or why not?
Well it usually is kind of difficult but most of the time it depends more on where you’re eating and the options. If I eat at my house it is really good because my mom has all these good healthy gluten-free + diary free* foods and she will cook them and serve them very fresh as opposed to a fast food place where really all I can have is a burger no bun and maybe fries witch is not at all fresh nor healthy and you really get sick of having it after a while.
6. What advice would you give to other kids who are changing to a gluten-free diet? Is there anything that might make it easier for them to make the change?
There is a lot of advice I could give them but I’ll start with something that’s very important witch is you have got to hang on, you have got to listen and take it seriously, you have to wait a year with the diet because trust me it will get better.
7. Did you notice any changes with your body or your behavior when you changed how you ate? What changed?
Yes, I did. I got a lot happier because I had no more problems with my stomach. My math brain also got faster and it took a lot more to get me angry.
So there you have it, the straight dope. There are a lot of good tips and tricks for getting your kids gluten-free in a painless way. I’ve done it for my own kids and now countless other families. For starters, here are a few of the more popular gluten-free treats my clients like (treats are a biggie for kids changing to a GF diet and nice to have on hand for birthday parties, etc.) and a basic recipe or two to get your started.
You can learn more about how the Wellness Pantry can help you by visiting her site here.