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Protein Boosts for Limited Diets

AMY GARDNER / March 20, 2013

Protein Boosts for Gluten/Casein/Soy Free Diets

For children with multiple allergies or sensitities, getting adequate protein can be a challenge.  Although the typical American diet includes plenty of protein, it’s the protein in foods that cause allergic reactions and food intolerances.  Take dairy for instance – there are 8 grams of protein in a glass of milk but only 1 gram in rice or almond milk.  Protein is important for growth, brain function and energy.  An average 2-3 year old needs 15-20g of protein.  This is no problem for the adult who easily consumes this in a single meal.  But for a picky toddler with food allergies, it’s another story.  Here are some easy ways to add a little protein to your child’s selective diet.  Note, I’ve included some food allergens so just focus on the items your child CAN eat.

1.  Add peanut butter to smoothies, toast and homeade baked goods
2.  Add egg white protein (Deb-El Just Whites) to milk alternative of choice, smoothies, coconut  or almond milk yogurts
3.  Substitute 1/2 the flour with chia powder in baking
4.  Use almond or bean flour in baking
5.  Opt for quinoa pasta which has 8g of protein per cup versus 2g in rice pasta
6.  Make homeade snack bars with nuts seeds and high protein flours like this recipe for  Gluten-free & Vegan Breakfast Bars
7.  Brush egg white onto homeade pizza dough or bagels
8.  Mix beans, pea protein or vegetable protein powder into pasta sauces, stir-fry or other mixed dishes
10. Make popsicles out of frozen fruits & juices blended with various milks and protein powder

Shoot for (2) 8g servings of protein a day for toddlers or check out this formula to calculate your child’s individual protein needs How Much Protein Does Your Child Need?