KIDS HEART FELT HEALTH

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CHILDREN WITH CELIAC & FOOD ALLERGIES

Having a medical condition that prevents children from eating certain foods, is not only difficult on those children, but can at times be scary for a parent, particularly in a school environment.  Children with celiac disease and food allergies need to know the specific ingredients in the foods that are served at school, that are brought into school by other parents and staff members, that are served in restaurants, that are purchased at grocery stores, and that are handed-out at extra-curricular activities and sporting events. 
 
Any food whose ingredients is not closely monitored poses potentially life-threatening conditions for children with severe food allergies.  For example, there are some children with peanut allergies who cannot even be in a room with peanuts present without the possibility of an allergic reaction.Families with children with celiac disease and food allergies, not only learn how to read labels carefully, but also learn how to make adjustments to their children’s food choices.  They also learn how to modify the ingredients in recipes when they prepare their children’s favorite foods (gluten free recipes are now becoming more available, with amaranth-based pizza dough now a possibility). 

In any event, being diagnosed with celiac disease or a food allergy, means changing one’s diet and closely monitoring food intake.  These are both positive things because if a child can learn how to monitor what they eat and make adjustments when necessary, then they are well on their way to choosing foods that will lead them down the path to long-term health.

Our program will not only make ingredient adjustments for children with celiac disease and food allergies, but also teaches other children how they can show empathy to children with food restrictions.  No child ever likes to “feel different” or to be left out, particularly if these feelings arise because of a medical condition.  By teaching about empathy in conjunction with healthy eating, we hope to raise sensitivity in the school environment so that your child does not feel left out, or that other children do not care, when class celebrations include gluten products, or foods that contain ingredients to which your child is allergic.  HEART” felt Health truly means living in a way to protect your child’s physical heart, as well as their very precious emotional heart.