Saturday, May 14, 2011

A Sugar Hang-Over

I've blogged before here and here and here about my thoughts on nutrition and food choices for children.  I still feel exactly the same way, but with Kaya now almost 2 1/2 admittedly I've loosened my tight reign of control (a little bit) over the foods I allow other people to offer him.  This slackening of control has been more a matter of resignation rather than choice though.  To be honest it's just been so very hard to constantly remind friends and family that we don't allow Kaya to eat anything unless it's nutritious.

Many of the people around us still really just don't understand our choices.  They tell us we're being too strict.  Or controlling.  Or mean.  Often they will sneak sweet treats to Kaya when we're not looking.  I feel like I'm constantly fighting an uphill battle.  And I'm tired.

Before, I wouldn't even let Kaya drink any kind of bottled fruit juice regardless of the label claims of "all natural" or "nothing artificial added" (natural or not, there's a hell of a lot of fruit sugar in a single glass of juice.  Not to mention the fact that the fruit used is typically poor quality, half rotten waste fruit anyway).  Now days If someone insistently pushes some juice to him I'll often just let him have it.  Instead of arguing and pleading with Aunt X to not give him any cake at all, now I'll ask her to please cut only a small piece and to please wait until after dinner before offering it.  

The fact that Kaya, like his father, has an extremely sweet tooth, does not make our quest for a sugar free life any easier.  He's crazy about anything and everything sweet.  Whereas a single small piece of tahin helva (a popular and traditional turkish confectionary made from crushed sesame seeds and sugar) would be more than enough for me, Kaya could eat 5 or 6 pieces and still be looking for more.

Three different varieties of Tahini Helva.  (Picture borrowed from Thank you)
The other night we had a bit of a get-together with some of hubby's relatives.  Immediately Murat's cousin (who Kaya calls Kek Hala (Cake Auntie) because she was one of the very first people to sneak him cake which he went crazy for and consequently taught him the word for this delicious, naughty pleasure), stole him away to the kitchen and promptly fed him a piece of cake the size of a big man's fist!  And it all went downhill from there.  In all, that night, tiny 2 year old Kaya ate a second piece of Kek Hala's cake, a piece of apple cake, 3 anzac biscuits,  and about 10 pieces of lokma (another popular Turkish dessert, this one disgustingly rich and made from balls of sweet batter fried in a sugary syrup).

Lokma. (Picture borrowed from  Thank you.)
Later, despite my little boy crying for me to take him to bed, it took more than 2 hours to put him to sleep while he wriggled and whimpered.  He also woke several times throughout the night crying for water.  He spent most of the next day on the toilet.  And was quite the cranky little fellow.  Poor little boy ...

Please, let's all be respectful of the parenting decisions our friends and family make.  Please, let's support them instead of challenging them.  Afterall, (in the vast majority of cases) we parents live for our kids and are constantly struggling to do what we believe is best for our kids.  And it's not easy.  Not easy at all.


Gregg said... [Reply]

Agreed Colette. Leave parenting to the parents.

Colette said... [Reply]

@Gregg Here here! Glad you're with me!