Getting kids to eat nutritious foods can be tricky business. Some experts say children need to be exposed to new foods a minimum of 15 times before they’ll try them.
However, for a special group of kids, turning up noses at particular foods isn’t just pickiness or a personality quirk. Children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) often face sensory issues that can limit the foods they’re willing to eat. One study found that nearly 90 percent of children with ASD may have sensory difficulties, which can include sensitivity to specific foods. That makes it a challenging for families to give kids the nutrition they require to grow and be healthy.
Luckily, there are tools that can help minimize the stress of food sensitivity and provide appealing options for kids. PackIt freezable bags keep healthy food fresh and safe up to 10 hours on the go. They have freezable gel built right into the lining so you never need ice packs to keep items cold. They’re perfect for school, travel or just a day out with the family. Best of all, they fold up for convenient storage in the freezer and are ready to go when you are.
As Autism Awareness Month comes to a close, here’s a look at how PackIt can be a lifesaver for special kids with special diets.
- It keeps things cool and crunchy
If your child has a preference for crisp veggies or hates how slimy sandwiches get when they’re warm, PackIt is the ideal way to chill their meals and snacks anywhere. Not only does it help fresh food stay that way, but it’s also powerful enough to make room-temperature drinks cold!
- It helps expand your child’s diet
Many kids with ASD are sensitive to particular food textures and how they feel in the mouth. That means they aren’t always receptive to foods the way Mother Nature made them. PackIt helps parents get creative and deliver nutritious foods in a variety of preparations. For example, if your child balks at eating room-temperature tomato slices, with Packit you can blend the lycopene-rich fruit into a sauce or salsa, then safely take it anywhere.
- It lets you take special foods anywhere
Some research has suggested that children with autism may have behavioral issues that milk or foods that contain gluten can worsen. Finding suitable options when you’re out to dinner, on a road trip or at places like an amusement parks (aka the land of pizza and cheeseburgers) can be a challenge. PackIt makes it simple to travel with foods that are dairy- and gluten-free. You can keep them safe on the go and heat them up later, say at a hotel or grandma's house.
- It protects your child from allergens
Anyone with a food allergy knows that the symptoms can be unpleasant and even dangerous. For a child with ASD, though, having an allergic reaction is particularly distressing. The only way to prevent this kind of traumatic experience is to provide your child with his own allergen-free meals. PackIt lets you take safe food everywhere and keep it separate from contaminants, especially those in fridges. Because it chills food all day, you never need to take it out of the bag to keep it cool.
- It helps comfort your child
When your child is equipped with a meal she likes, she’s less likely to be exposed to foods that cause anxiety in the lunch line or food court. Whether she prefers ‘crunchy’ or ‘white’ food, simply knowing these foods are available can help her feel more relaxed in otherwise stressful situations.