When your child is in the hospital or being treated for an illness, food and nourishment can be just as important as the medicine he or she takes. The right diet can help the body heal and grow, and our registered dietitians are here to make sure children get the nutrition they need.
For children with allergies, we review all recipes to make sure that our food contains no hidden nuts, gluten, or other potential irritants. If your child has cultural or religious dietary restrictions, please let us know so we can accommodate them.
Outpatient Nutrition Programs
Our registered dietitians work with children being treated through our outpatient programs and centers. We also check in with parents to make sure babies who have been in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) are gaining weight.
Many medical conditions affect your child’s food choices, and this can affect the whole family. We can help you make the adjustments necessary at home to ensure your family is well nourished.
Here are some of the situations our dietitians can help you and your child address:
We help children with inflammatory bowel disease, irritable bowel syndrome, and eosinophilic esophagitis get the nutrients they need.
We create elimination diets for children who have been diagnosed with a food sensitivity, such as lactose intolerance or food allergy. We give you the tools you need to remove certain foods from your child’s diet in a way that the whole family can adapt to.
We create specialized meal plans for children who have physical differences that make eating solid foods difficult, such as cleft palate or facial trauma.
We help children whose picky eating, also known as selective eating, is so severe that it impacts his or her health and growth, through our Pediatric Interdisciplinary Nutrition and Feeding Program. We also help children who are transitioning from enteral, or tube, feeding to eating by mouth.
We help children deal with eating or appetite problems, such as nausea, difficulty swallowing, or mouth or throat pain. This can be caused by certain conditions, such as cancer, as well as its treatment.
We create weight management programs for children who need to gain weight due to picky eating or a medical condition, or who need to lose weight for health reasons.
Robinson Family S.Q.U.A.S.H. Program
The Robinson Family S.Q.U.A.S.H. (Smart choices, Quality ingredients, Unique, Appetizing, Simple, and Healthy) Program is based on the belief that excellent nutrition is crucial for all children, but is especially important for children who are in the hospital or recovering at home.
S.Q.U.A.S.H. is made possible with generous support from Linda Gosden Robinson and James D. Robinson III.
As part of the S.Q.U.A.S.H. program, we host the following events.
Gluten-free cooking classes are available through the Pediatric Celiac Disease and Gluten-Related Disorders Program. Classes are free and available to children 7 to 16 years old.
These food-related activities, available for all children, help them pass the time while waiting for medical treatment. Children may make their own healthy snacks or create edible “food art,” so they’re having fun while learning about new foods and good nutrition.
Twice a year, S.Q.U.A.S.H. holds educational symposia for dietitians and doctors. Other members of the professional or local community are welcome to attend these free events.
For more information, please contact Deborah Tagliareni, Children’s Services clinical nutrition manager, at [email protected] or -942-7822.