Whole30 & Chuck E Cheese


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We have been eating paleo since January. We did whole30 then, and we're doing another round now, in June. DS (3.5) has done really well with it. He just eats whatever we give him and isn't too picky.

My cousin's daughter had a birthday party at Chuck E Cheese. I didn't want him to feel excluded, so I let him have a piece of pizza and a small piece of cake. He had horrible diarrhea about 30 minutes afterwards. He kept saying, "my stomach hurts. pizza makes me feel bad" :( I felt so awful for letting him eat that junk, but I didn't want him to be the weird kid who's mom wouldn't let him eat pizza!

We went to another party a couple of weeks later and I didn't let him have ice cream or cake. I gave him some fruit and carrots instead. I felt awful because he kept asking me for cake... but I knew it could make him feel badly again so I said no.

A lot of rambling to ask... how do you handle situations like this? Do you let your kid have an occasional treat? If so, how do they react? Do you restrict cake/pizza/ice cream at birthday parties and other social events?

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This is just me....but I would let him have some. He needs to learn on his own and make his own associations between these foods and how it makes him feel. Seems like he figured out that pizza was no good, so if he doesn't ask for it again than I would say the lesson was worth it. I'm just a big believer in letting kids make their own decisions and learning from them (within reason of course). Now if he keeps asking for cake even though he gets sick, I would step in and say no. Some times you just can't help yourself and you need someone to step in...It's like me and cheese #confession

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In these situations, I try to be prepared way ahead of time. I'll bring a gluten free pizza to a birthday party or my own cupcakes. That way, my girls get the opportunity to participate with everyone else and neither of us have to deal with the fallout from junk. Sometimes, we even make a special cupcake for the birthday kid as a part of their present. If, for some reason, I haven't taken the time, though I will often let them have a small serving of whatever's there.

At 3 and 4.5 they know to choose vegetables over junk food and will often refuse pizza or cake they know has gluten. I also make an effort to reward them for making good food choices in those situations. I figure that I'm not just teaching them how to eat, I'm teaching them how to live, and that involves off-plan situations sometimes.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I am not an expert on this topic as I only have one son. He just turned 3. HOWEVER, I have been increasingly more sensitive to dairy and wheat as I've done more long stretches of paleo myself. And then I'll eat a piece of cake and deal with the consequences of being on the toilet all evening. It's these evenings that my son has become aware of the affect of food on me and then a million questions about why I'm sick. Finally after avoiding the conversation, I just told him the truth.

The last time I got sick, he laid in bed next to me stroking my hair. Then he says, "Mom, I don't like you being sick. You need to stop eating bad foods that make you sick. Let's just go get some good food at Whole Foods. That will make you feel better." I could hardly believe his level of understanding.

Now we've discovered he has the same food sensitivities as I do and we are working on changing his diet as well. He's been a super picky eater lately so it's tough. But what I'm saying here is just talk to your kid. My kid totally gets it. Now he asks if something has gluten in it and if it does, even if it's cake, he won't touch it. He'll say, "Will this make me sick Mommy? Ok, then I don't want it." Most of the time, he's 100% fine with not eating it. He'll pick a piece of jerky over pizza any day.

I also agree with being prepared. Tell him there is going to be pizza there and why it's not a great choice. Our wording is very important. I never tell my son he "can't" have something. I just teach him that for every choice, there is a price and a benefit. That way, he's growing up to make the good choices by himself.

I really believe if you he gets all of that, he won't feel excluded because he'll believe he's truly not missing anything.

Hope that helps! :)

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