B.C. boy with autism who only eats brand of discontinued waffles gets home recipe

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we have played into his hands. now that he has the secret formula, none will abate his appetite for this staple breakfast pastry. he has been made too powerful


If you have never worked with or raised a child with autism and food aversions you cannot comprehend how challenging this food problem can be. I once worked with a young man who will eat or drink nothing which is not white. He truly fears other foods. He would definitely would choose eating white maggots over green beans. You can’t snap your fingers and change their neurologic makeup.


I remember seeing the news where the company sent him the last cases of the waffles that had been made. Glad to see that his family will always be able to make the waffles at home.


I work with young people like this chap. Diet can be extremely difficult to change. White foods are really popular I’ve found. The first thing I usually try to expand on it with waffles or plain pasta is melting some cheese on an extra portion and see if it’s tried. Often can be helpful. I try to create games and challenges in a gentle, silly sort of way and support and praise all positive reactions and behaviours around food or just any changes really. Sweets/candy can help with colours and flavours. If your guy is now eating chocolate, for example, use it to introduce other chocolatey items like cake. Even if it’s just in conversation first. Or a trip to a bakery next time you’re in town. Anything. There aren’t any tricks it’s just trial, error and trust. In conversation with some of my patients it seems common that white foods are trusted. Nothing hiding. It’s clean. It’s pure. It’s constant and it’s safe. Its the same texture and it feels the same when they’re full. I’ve had some successes I’m extremely proud of but it’s taken a lot of time and more rejection than anything. Sometimes it’s a case of they may try something you’re eating if you’re trusted and their food tastes and textures world expands from that. Others it may be a case of things getting so bad medical intervention is the only way and they end up on a PEG feed, possibly die. It’s extremely frustrating to see, knowing a better diet would improve a lot of things for the patient physically and mentally. Long before it gets to it’s worst. Heart breaking, actually. One young man had been in children’s homes forever. At 18 he was released from their services and placed in to a supported living situation with support staff. He had a history of violence and aggression so people were afraid to challenge him on anything. He was a waffle eater. All day every day his staff would just make dozens of waffles at any time he fancied. He was a clever lad, non verbal but very clever. He taught himself to read and write with an iPhone because he never went to school. It took months of being attacked and screamed at, furniture being smashed and lots of challenging behaviours before he’d trust me at all. Once he did we would chat a bit via a tablet. He had humour and interest in all manner of things. I explained to him what I was doing and why. I have him things to read and watch on YouTube about being healthy with food and why. I would prepare and eat my meals there too, ask if he wants to try. Luckily (it was luck imo) he took it in a bit so that a few months later he was interested in trying to cook. So I kinda refused to let him cook waffles (Hey, that’s my thing, you trying to get rid of me?!) and made him cook cheese on toast. He liked it, mostly because he’s achieved something people never trusted him to do before. It expanded from there. Two years after meeting him, he’ll cook a full roast dinner and invite staff from across the site to dine with him. It’s an event. He has a meal planner on his wall covering three months of breakfast, lunch and dinner so he has full control over his meals that he sits woth his day staff and does. It gave him a social outlet and access to learning life skills like budgeting and shopping. All from an initially tiny, tiny change in diet.


Lots of people offering snide and uninformed opinions; obviously a diet of nothing but waffles is bad. But childeren and adults with severe autism spectrum disorders do not function like you would as rational adults. If not presented with that food, the child may still not eat and starve. Hypothetical, obviously, but there are ways to work with the child’s disorder and gradually introduce more food that don’t involve child abuse. And even then, it’s likely to be a difficult task. Some of y’all have never looked after anyone with enhanced needs and it shows