5

votes

How do you mix carbs and fat for paleoish kids?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created August 08, 2011 at 10:11 AM

I'm a paleo guy married to a non-paleo-but-trying girl. We've dialled our 7-year old daughter's diet in to what I would consider a paleoish diet - maybe 75% for you paleostatisticians out there. Although we've come a long way, we haven't gotten all grains out of her diet. As many parents do, we run up against external forces (grandparents, friends, lunch swapping on the playground...), as well as our own challenges (poor planning, respecting the non-paleo views in our home, our daughter's sad sweet eyes...). She's more on-board than we imagined she'd be, but her day includes one serving of grains on average, almost always at lunch.

My question is: understanding that lots of healthy fat is an important part of our paleo (human) diet, and accepting that the odd sandwich or plate of pasta will be thrown into the mix, how do you combine fat and grainy carbs? My conversion to paleo involved getting comfortable with eating lots of butter, animal fat, ghee, coconut cream, and olive oil. My daughter is completely down with the increased fat calories, but my fear is that combining all that delicious grease with the amount of grain she eats will lead to metabolic derangement of some kind. Would you keep the paleo side a constant and allow the grains, or would you dial down the fat on days of higher carb and grain consumption?

Thoughts?

Medium avatar

(3259)

on August 09, 2011
at 12:32 AM

Nor do we. When the "eggs agaaain...?" comes out, I usually cure it with a few days of luke warm lumpy oatmeal. "Daddy...pleeeease can we have eggs again?!".

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on August 08, 2011
at 08:39 PM

I understand, my wife seems to have come from that line of thought thought she's over it now. I know from what I've seen that its apparently very difficult to get your head around the whole "fats not evil" thing. I really think you are doing terrific in what you have been able to accomplish with your daughter. We have a 2 and 4 year old, so as I have no problem getting them some good natural fat, the whole "I want cereal!" types of arguments do ensue event thought we don't even have any in the house.

E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on August 08, 2011
at 05:34 PM

Adding fat to carbs makes them way easier to eat. Potatoes with butter are a lot more appetizing than plain potatoes. No one macronutrient can make you over eat imo, its when you mix the macronutrients that they become extremely easy to overeat. Its extremly easy to make a 500cal pasta meal into a 1000cal meal with some added fat. Putting more fat on carbs will probably not make it easier to eat less, that's why the SAD is 50/50 fat/carbs.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18706)

on August 08, 2011
at 02:49 PM

Why should it not be calorie dense? Our appetites adjust to density of the food we eat, not just the volume. The only thing that I know that makes some people eat more than they need is carbohydrate. If the food is fattier, it will probably be *less* likely to make her overeat.

Aead76beb5fc7b762a6b4ddc234f6051

(15239)

on August 08, 2011
at 02:31 PM

i love this question! we are struggling with the same things.

Medium avatar

(3259)

on August 08, 2011
at 02:04 PM

That's cool. Consider yourself lucky. I grew up in the low fat, margarine, and diet-everything paradigm because my Dad had the bad luck of having a heart attack at the very apex of the "fat is bad" era - he was 40 at the time. My mother committed herself to learning what was considered cutting edge at the time and cooked that way out of love. Considering my Dad's extreme cardiovascular problems (he's had 3 more MIs since) plus my upbringing, ramping up the fat intake has felt a lot like bungee jumping. I totally get it now and am fully onboard, but it didn't come naturally, let me tell you.

E06dcdb3f856057025e9776e038d8072

(305)

on August 08, 2011
at 01:59 PM

Should add that the main thing we're trying to do with the kids is feed them real food, and explain to them why in kid-friendly terms. Their palates are already changing. (We never did fast food much, even before shifting more paleo). We're not freaking out about the processed stuff--and the other day I even called them downstairs to go chase the ice cream truck (gotta be a kid and it's frickin' 108 here)--but our goal is for them to enjoy the taste of food that hasn't been filled with chemicals and HFCS.

E06dcdb3f856057025e9776e038d8072

(305)

on August 08, 2011
at 01:54 PM

I'm so glad you asked that! We're doing the same with our kids, trying to figure the balance, trying to shift their perspective. The other day, they had "Happy Meals" after a trip to grandma's. Was it mean of me that I was sooooo happy when the oldest (9) told me afterwards that the happy meal made her feel yucky?

E5103bd115084c001999682686069a20

(286)

on August 08, 2011
at 01:10 PM

Wow tat is amazing! Good job! I'm married to a non-paleo (bordering on anti) so I've faced some challenges on the food front. Is your daughter doing Dairy? Maybe some full fat grassfed milk at lunch? Or full fat grassfed yogurt with nuts as a dessert? I would just try resting in the fact that for now you are doing a really great job on most of your meals for your family.

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3 Answers

4
F3e312545761ab663e37e6c2d5c831ea

(1049)

on August 08, 2011
at 01:51 PM

Since fat is more satiating and sustaining, I would focus on including more so that she desires grains less. Our boys love bacon but they also devour black olives, avocado, tuna and salmon salads with homemade fatty mayo, etc. At first we used glutenfree bread, and eventually we noticed them eating the meat and avocado out of the middle and tossing the grains aside.

Since kids need more energy foods than most of us, there bodies will drive them to eat what works. Hope you can get the whole family on-board soon!

4
3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on August 08, 2011
at 12:29 PM

See I get really confused on these sort of "how much fat" posts. I guess my parents and I completely missed out on the fat scare of the 80's and 90's. We stuck to full fat milk and real butter, so when I see "My conversion to paleo involved getting comfortable with eating lots of butter, animal fat, ghee, coconut cream, and olive oil" I keep wondering if everyone means your like drowning in this stuff, or are you just using it to cook in and what not? I would say use fat and butter the way your great grand parents did and don't stress about one serving of grains a day. If you can make that serving not wheat based then that would be even better, but use the fats normally.

3846a3b61bc9051e4baebdef62e58c52

(18635)

on August 08, 2011
at 08:39 PM

I understand, my wife seems to have come from that line of thought thought she's over it now. I know from what I've seen that its apparently very difficult to get your head around the whole "fats not evil" thing. I really think you are doing terrific in what you have been able to accomplish with your daughter. We have a 2 and 4 year old, so as I have no problem getting them some good natural fat, the whole "I want cereal!" types of arguments do ensue event thought we don't even have any in the house.

Medium avatar

(3259)

on August 08, 2011
at 02:04 PM

That's cool. Consider yourself lucky. I grew up in the low fat, margarine, and diet-everything paradigm because my Dad had the bad luck of having a heart attack at the very apex of the "fat is bad" era - he was 40 at the time. My mother committed herself to learning what was considered cutting edge at the time and cooked that way out of love. Considering my Dad's extreme cardiovascular problems (he's had 3 more MIs since) plus my upbringing, ramping up the fat intake has felt a lot like bungee jumping. I totally get it now and am fully onboard, but it didn't come naturally, let me tell you.

Medium avatar

(3259)

on August 09, 2011
at 12:32 AM

Nor do we. When the "eggs agaaain...?" comes out, I usually cure it with a few days of luke warm lumpy oatmeal. "Daddy...pleeeease can we have eggs again?!".

1
E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on August 08, 2011
at 11:23 AM

It probably doesn't matter that much especially for a 7yr old. Just don't drench the pasta and make it too calorie dense.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18706)

on August 08, 2011
at 02:49 PM

Why should it not be calorie dense? Our appetites adjust to density of the food we eat, not just the volume. The only thing that I know that makes some people eat more than they need is carbohydrate. If the food is fattier, it will probably be *less* likely to make her overeat.

E5c7f14800c5992831f5c70fa746dc5c

(12857)

on August 08, 2011
at 05:34 PM

Adding fat to carbs makes them way easier to eat. Potatoes with butter are a lot more appetizing than plain potatoes. No one macronutrient can make you over eat imo, its when you mix the macronutrients that they become extremely easy to overeat. Its extremly easy to make a 500cal pasta meal into a 1000cal meal with some added fat. Putting more fat on carbs will probably not make it easier to eat less, that's why the SAD is 50/50 fat/carbs.

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