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CEDARBARK1 SparkPoints: (0)
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8/7/12 8:01 A

While allergies are almost certainly not the case for most of your food issues, an allium allergy (onions, garlic, leeks) is not all that uncommon. It may be mild enough of an allergy that the garlic powder can be tolerated. As the previous respondent mentioned, worth checking out. If so, I'd probably recommend skipping even the garlic powder.

I've also heard of sensitivities to items in the pepper family. Go get tested.

There's a possibility that in childhood you may have made a mental psychosomatic association between allergens and other vegetables. Just a thought. When I was younger I had a bowl of minestrone soup, and got terribly ill within an hour or two. It turned out that the two items were not related (it was a bug, not something in the soup), but it was years before I could go near minestrone soup again.

8/6/12 11:59 P

I have a few different thoughts that I thought I'd throw out there...

First, onions and garlic are in the same botanical family. Have you ever considered a mild food allergy? My ds has multiple food allergies and has always had food refusals associated with that. I, myself, have an allergy to walnuts. All of my life I have hated them. While I have never chosen to eat walnuts, I did have accidental exposures. As I've grown older, when that has happened, I have also had progressively more serious symptoms. I don't have life threatening symptoms, but I definitely don't eat them now if I can help it!! When I finally saw an allergist about my asthma, I tested positive to walnut allergy testing.

Another thing....many children who have food refusals also have issues with them....chewing or textural issues. So it could be a functional thing.

And finally, as others said, a possible phobia or just a mental block that you have.

I will say, I am one of those super tasters. I actually tasted some things in high school in my Biology class where out of 30 students, only I could taste them. And let me tell you, they ALL tasted awful!! My classmates thought I was making it up. Thankfully, my science teacher assured them I was not and I think he said only 10% of the population is a super taster. Interestingly, many of these "tastes" are in veggies.

As a child, I haaaaated veggies. All of them!! Except peas. Thankfully, as I've grown older and braver, I've tried things I previously hated. One thing I came to realize is that I do NOT like how my mother made most veggies. I prefer mine just tender and steamed. My mother, IMHO, overcooked everything! She doesn't like my veggies because I don't put anything on them. I've never been big into fancy side dishes. I just serve them plain and add a tiny little bit of butter and/or salt. when it's on my plate. My kids eat them the same way. My mother put the bowl of veggies on the table with half to a whole stick of margarine. BLECK It was a bowl of pale, limp, oily green veggies.

So I say all that to ask if you've ever tried fixing them differently. If it isn't a mental thing or something like that, maybe the preparation method would make a difference.

And finally, I don't think you HAVE to eat every veggie. I abhor beets. I am not crazy about carrots and I hate celery. But I like other orange veggies. And I eat most green things. See if you can try some different green things and a some colorful things. As long as you can find SOMETHING.

REDDOGMOM SparkPoints: (22,915)
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8/6/12 10:40 P

I have much the same problem. I even blogged about it a couple of times in the past. I know mine goes back to having serious problems with ulcers as a child. I was hospitalized at 2 and almost died. I don't have nearly so much trouble anymore but I have a huge mental thing with not trying new foods in case they make my stomach hurt. There actually is a "selective eating disorder".

I am trying to branch out. Grilling or roasting veggies seems to work best for me. They're still crunchy and I can work with that. I eat no fruits at all. I think something about the acid bothered me when I was a kid. I've tried several things but I can sometimes make them into a smoothie and choke them down. Otherwise it's orange juice or grape juice.

I work hard to try get a rainbow in every day. I am not always successful but over the course of a week I manage to get every color at least 3 to 4 days. Sadly, it's just usually the same things. Asparagus or green beans, black beans, tomato juice over macaroni (not healthy I know but at least I get a "red" in", carrots, corn, potatoes (in different colors, that helps)

I think there are more of us out there with food issues than you think. We just don't publicize it.

JENNYLT1 SparkPoints: (25,243)
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8/6/12 10:26 P

You've gotten lots of great suggestions. I remember seeing recipes a couple years ago that included adding baby food purees into food (like sweet potatoes, carrots, spinach, green beans, squash etc.). You can add stuff like that into meatloaves, smoothies, and even mac & cheese without realizing it's there. Good luck to you, I look forward to reading your blog!

CEMERSON69 SparkPoints: (0)
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8/6/12 10:16 P

Thank you all, again, for your suggestions and encouragement. Just wanted to you all know that I will be writing a blog tonight that contains my story. It's likely to be long but, if you are interested in knowing more about me, please feel free to read it! It probably won't be up for a couple of hours. I expect it to be fairly difficult to write.

CEMERSON69 SparkPoints: (0)
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8/6/12 10:14 P

It's completely ridiculous but I don't eat salad. I find lettuce disgusting. I did try fresh spinach last year, not cooked. I was able to eat 3 pieces and then lost it. I don't eat any of the squash's. Pumpkin, summer squash...or any of the others! No other vegetables besides carrots and green beans. I like canned carrots and green beans. LOVE raw carrots. Can't stand raw or fresh green beans. Squeaky on my teeth.

I've been doing a LOT of research. I believe that I have Selective Eating Disorder. I will be seeing my doctor regarding this. Hopefully he will listen to me. Reading the stories on is amazing. It's like all of these people climbed inside of me and decided to write my story!

Thanks for your words of encouragement. They are truly appreciated!

8/6/12 8:41 P

I'M a super picky eater too. I don't quite have a selective eating type of disorder but I dislike a LOT of foods. I won't eat most sauces (or any condiments) and the list of veggies I will eat is sooo much shorter than the list of ones I will. I'm also picky when it comes to seasonings and spices. I hatehateHATE curry, cumin, and a number of other spices. When it comes to onions, I puree them, so I get the taste (and nutrients) without the texture, you should try that with garlic.
How are you with salads? I for one can't stomach most veggies when they're cooked (starchy vegetables aside), but I'm more okay with a number of them in a salad (as long as they're covered in adequate lemon juice and ground pepper). Broccoli & cauliflour are two good things to add to a borning lettuce salad to help you get your servings in, and they really don't taste all that bad (they DO however taste sooo much less favorable when they are cooked -- to me). Do you try veggies raw or just cooked?
And roasted root veggies are a MUST try!! I didn't think I'd like 'em, but when they're roasted in the same pan as a beef or pork roast, it all tastes the same. Celery root & parsnips are two things I can add to a pot roast without my tongue even objecting a little bit.
Have you ever grilled squash, zucchinni or asparagus? They taste SO much better when grilled over an open flame than I had ever tasted cooked any other way. Still not amazing or something that I really enjoy eating, but much, MUCH less gag-worthy. I've also had people suggest grilling eggplant to me and, I've tried it once but couldn't stand it. You should try it though - I might be pickier than you.
Last but not least - be sure to take some sort of multi-vitamin!! It's something my doc suggested a while back when we discussed my food preferences.

I know a lot of what I said has probably already been suggested, but I felt like I had to reply since I know exactly how you feel. I hope some of the suggestions here and in this thread help you on your journey. Keep your head up and don't feel bad about it. You just need to focus on what works for you. Some people just have pickier pallates.

ANARIE Posts: 13,200
8/6/12 8:04 P

I agree that you probably need to see a therapist. Things like this often go back to having been forced to eat specific things as a child, and once a therapist helps you pinpoint the memory, you realize that nobody can force you to do anything anymore, and it all clears up in a matter of weeks.

HOWEVER: It would also be a very good idea to see an ear, nose, and throat doctor to make sure it's not a swallowing issue. There's actually a right and wrong way to swallow, believe it or not, and veggies can be especially hard to get down if your swallow reflex isn't quite right.

SCTK519 Posts: 2,086
8/6/12 4:17 P

It sounds like you have a good start in terms of what you eat for vegetables. Do you eat any fruit at all? I'd say keeping eating the veggies and such that you do like. I had heard somewhere that trying something 10 times helps decrease an aversion to it; it also may be helpful to be trying new things in smaller portions as well, not so overwhelming and you don't have to worry about things going to waste. Good Luck! :)

NIRERIN Posts: 14,297
8/6/12 3:24 P

one quick note about deceptively delicious and that sort of cookbook. you have to pay attention to how much veggie is actually getting into the food you're consuming. in other words, you might like the spinach muffins, but each muffin might only have 1/4 of a serving of spinach in it. if you don't like spinach, but you like it in the muffins, it's a great first step. but just keep in mind that having a serving of the recipe might not get you the same value as having a serving of veg and you'll probably have to work up from there.

KFWOHLFORD SparkPoints: (3,013)
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8/6/12 3:20 P

Lots of adults are picky about certain vegetables... Even the healthiest eaters i know have one or two veggies that they hate. I can't stand sweet peppers, unless just a little is used.., they overpower the flavor of the dish and i don't like the flavor much unless used sparingly.

Still, many of us hated most vegetables as a kid and had to try them again as adults and learn to love them. I hated most veggies as a kid, and now i eat more veggies than any other food group! But that was definitely a process... You try them in different ways than how your parents fixed them, etc. There are spme you may never like, some you've never even tried (maybe like jicama or swiss chard?), and some you used to dislike but now you like them prepared only a certain way.

Edited by: KFWOHLFORD at: 8/6/2012 (15:22)
DRAGONCHILDE SparkPoints: (61,458)
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8/6/12 2:50 P

Okay, no one throw anything at me, but this is driving me nuts.

It's palate, not pallet. :) Palette is something you using in painting... nothing to do with your mouth.

Okay, back to your regularly scheduled programming.

Edited by: DRAGONCHILDE at: 8/6/2012 (14:51)
GTKARLA Posts: 232
8/6/12 2:50 P

Watch freaky eaters, and see how they deal with people`s food phobias. There is often an issue about what got them stuck with their strange restrictive eating habits.and again I echo seeing a psychologist (if possible one that has experience with eating disorders and a behavioral approach to therapy),

DIDS70 Posts: 5,368
8/6/12 1:05 P

Not "bashing" you, but maybe moreso your parents. I know plenty of kids now a days who eat healthy. My chiropractors kids for example have no problem going out to the garden and picking tomatoes off the vine. Of course he would not have junk food in his house anyway.

But your parents did you a great disservice for not pushing healthier choices on you and expanding your pallet. (but it could also have been the era that we grew up in) Carrots and cucumbers are fine, but I would get really tired of the same two or three veggies. I will be the first to admit that veggies were not my first choice growing up either and Mom certainly cooked from a large number of cans, but we were introduced to raw veggies as well as my grandparents loved to garden and would bring lots of veggies to the house.

My real test came about a year and a half ago when I went 75% raw. Now talk about system shock and gag reflex. I ate things that I had no idea I was eating as I had a raw food chef. The only thing that I refused to eat were the tomato stacks (I loved the filling inside but couldn't handle the actual tomato) or anything with Mushrooms. I eat parsnips, squash of all varieties, and other veggies that she put into her concoctions. much of it was also put into smoothies.
Something that you may want to try is zucchini. Spiral cut it looks exactly like spaghetti. Add a really fun marinara on top and it is really good. If you don't want the tomato based sauce, I have a really good spicy almond sauce. (you don't cook the zucchini. Eat it raw)

CEMERSON69 SparkPoints: (0)
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8/6/12 12:13 P

Great suggestions everyone. Thank you for being honest and not bashing me. This is an issue that I have always been embarrassed about so I usually just hide it from everyone by saying I'm not hungry.

Also, I wanted to clear up the issue about my husband. He doesn't cook with things I don't like on purpose. The last couple of times this has happened he has been absolutely apologetic. He has even gone so far as to take the food from me and try to pull out what I don't like. I, of course, always take it back and try to eat it. If I can't, I pick stuff out OR, if it's just too much, I don't eat it. I have made him feel very bad. He is an excellent cook and sometimes I think that my issues make him much less confident in his cooking! It makes me feel terrible.

I've never EVER thought of this issue as a phobia or any such mental disorders. It is extremely disturbing yet somehow relieving to know that it could be something like that for me. I have always said, "I can't be the only one out there like this." but I have never been able to find anyone else that is quite like me. I will definitely be looking into treatment of this. I so badly want to be able to eat the dishes that look amazingly good. I scour and magazines for recipes and everything looks so good. Then I realize what's in it and don't even attempt to make it.

I will also be looking into the Deceptively Delicious cookbook. I'll ask my husband to hide things and not tell me. Until after I eat it and it's amazing!

I truly appreciate all of your thoughtful comments. Thank you again.

VEGAN711 Posts: 140
8/6/12 10:02 A

You sound like a prime candidate for the cookbook "Deceptively Delicious." It's a cookbook designed for parents of picky kids. It's better for kids to learn to appreciate healthy food and vegetables but seeing how you try these things and just don't like them, you should learn recipes where you can hide them. These recipes are regular food recipes but have hidden veggies in them (usually in puree form). Also, my problem isn't nearly as extreme but I'm not a veggie fan but find roasted veggies and homemade veggie chips to be delicious :-) Good luck!!

REVSERENA SparkPoints: (0)
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8/6/12 9:43 A

One other idea, since you like potatoes, is mashed cauliflower. If you add a little non-fat sour cream, it tastes pretty good. Just don't expect it to taste the same as potatoes, and you may find that you like it.

REVSERENA SparkPoints: (0)
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8/6/12 9:40 A

Look at the baby food section in your grocery store. Children's tastes allow for more veggies than you think!

Try preparing some veggies without any added spices. Try plain and bland, and let your husband add extra flavor to his after cooking.

Try some veggies uncooked, carrot and celery sticks are classic, but snow peas can also be pretty good, cucumbers are nice, and even if you don't like green peppers, red and yellow peppers may be more to your liking. A low-fat or non-fat dip can make them go down easier.

Finally, vegetable soup can be an easier way to eat veggies.

Good luck!

JUSTBIRDY SparkPoints: (0)
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8/6/12 9:29 A

You could have an unresolved gut health issue that needs to be fixed before you can eat and enjoy certain foods. Many have had success on the GAPS diet. E-mail me if you want more info.

ALGEBRAGIRL Posts: 1,925
8/6/12 9:08 A

Get a good juicer. You can cook your veggies hidden in other things (as a previous poster suggested, providing a link) or you can devise acceptable juices that contain the veggies mixed with other things like fruit. It's lots easier to drink some green peppers that are part of a fruit juice than to try to eat the pieces.

SARAHANN01 SparkPoints: (0)
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8/6/12 8:57 A

"I am looking for ways to get the nutrients available in things I don't eat, without actually eating them."
You can try to hide the taste and texture through the many ways that people have mentioned, but you are going to have to actually ingest the food. Plus, if this is causing problems between you and your husband it might be better to get over the phobia rather than just accept it. Yes, maybe he should be more considerate when making meals, but that's hard when making meals you like would severely limit what he could make. I am sure he doesn't want Mac n' Cheese all the time.

"My tastebuds haven't changed since I was a child."
Your taste buds haven't changed because you probably never pushed yourself out of your comfort zone with food when you were growing up. It's hard to start now. I agree with what other posters have said, a nutritionist won't help with your problem. This sounds more like a mental thing -- a phobia.

CMCOLE Posts: 2,667
8/6/12 8:15 A

I agree with the suggestions:

Eat what you DO like, for now, and make sure you get sufficient servings of them.

Get help/advice from a professional - not necessarily a nutritionist, but possibly someone who can help with the phobia

Get your husband on board. I'm sure he doesn't really like to see you spit up what he's prepared, any more than you like doing it

MICHELLEXXXX SparkPoints: (12,272)
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8/6/12 7:55 A

Picky eating is a serious condition; I hope you seek help for it.
Until then, I would focus on the healthy things you DO like. Be sure to get your 8-10 servings veggies from your cucumbers, green beans, and carrots (limit the carrots). Although potato and corn are not veggies, they still contain some beneficial ingredients so I encourage you to continue using them on occasion. Do you like fruits? Meats?

Edited by: MICHELLEXXXX at: 8/6/2012 (08:06)
NIRERIN Posts: 14,297
8/6/12 7:36 A

with onions, peppers, celery, garlic and the like is it a texture thing or a taste thing? if it's a texture thing, the best thing i ever did was to start cooking with them, but chopping them really fine. mincing them in fact. and with garlic you can actually mash it into a paste after that. then if you cook with that in things you like, it can be much easier to get it down, no issues.

i'll also say that quantity is key when introducing new stuff. mac and mashed potatoes are two of the easiest things to mix new veggies in. you just have to beware of portions. just like with the stuff above, you don't want to try having a whole serving of a new veg you don't like at once. if you're having a cup of mac, try adding 1/8 cup of the new veg. if you're really worried, start with 1/16 cup [or let's be honest here, a Tablespoon] and add that portion to your mac. then, you slowly start to up the portion each time you make it. and things like cauliflower, broccoli, spinach [are you disliking the raw or fresh and are you chopping it up before you add it in? i don't like raw spinach unless it goes through the blender before it gets cooked in whatever. it is stringy and slimy. raw on the other hand, i'll loosely chop and add right before i eat so that it doesn't get slimy.], butternut squash, zucchini, yellow squash, and most other things can get mixed in there pretty easily. and remember, if you're iffy on veg, you want to be making sure that the pieces of veg you're adding are smaller than the main thing you like. for mac and cheese, the pieces of veg might only be half the size of a noodle. for rice, you want them as fine as you can chop them.

if you like potatoes and carrots, try parsnips. they look like an almost potato colored carrot and they taste like an already seasoned potato. sweet potatoes are another great roaster[and if you dislike sweet potatoes, ask yourself if you have only had them sweet with things like marshmallow and brown sugar. i thought i hated them because of that until a friend made me try a sweet potato fry. alexia is a great brand to try and if you like it, you can move on to making your own, but more on that later]. any root veggie is really. again, don't go whole hog the first go. use mostly potatoes and carrots and a little bit of new.
and then there are chips. any root veggie [potatoes, carrots, sweet potatoes, squash, summer squash, etc] can be sliced thinly, tossed with a little olive oil and some spices, baked until crispy on one side, flipped and baked until done on the other. they're veggies and chips. and tasty. and if you eat them, you'll get more used to the flavor profile of the veg. while it tastes like a chip at the same time.

also, are you logging how you are trying veg? that can be a big help in identifying preps you like and preps you hate. you might find that any sweet squash recipe, be it summer or winter or regular makes you gag with any sweet prep. but that you like those things in savory preps. plus, if you're logging, you can note the ratios that you are using and slowly work it up that way.

if you like corn, start buying succotash instead of plain corn. if you have half a cup or corn, start counting the amount of lima beans [start with 3 per half cup or whatever] and slowly work your way up. as my mother told me when i was little, if you eat the lima beans first then your mouth will taste like corn when you are done. you can also do the same thing by adding peas, chopped up tomatoes [again, make sure the pieces are no larger than the kernel of corn], peppers [if you sautee them low, lightly and for a rather long time, they get just as tender as corn], or really anything. frozen mixed veggies are another decent mix to use and to add things to where you can.

8/6/12 5:12 A

Like someone else said; I seriously recommend seeking the help of a professional to help you overcome this thinking...I suspect your phobia about certain types of food is just one of the things you struggle with...?

I wish you all the best....

SKIMMETRY SparkPoints: (0)
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8/6/12 4:17 A

Hey, do you ever eat vegetable dishes at Thanksgiving and Christmas? You mentioned that you like potatoes with carrots. That's a start. I love carrots, squash, potatoes, and sweet potatoes roasted in olive oil with sea salt. Super easy. Do you like any veggies in soups? Carrots, celery, and potatoes are great in soups. Or try to sweeten up some veggies- cinnamon on a baked sweet potato, maple glazed carrots, spinach blended into a banana smoothie. I like beets mixed into a berry smoothie, but that's not for everyone. You might think about getting a juicer. You can get the nutrients without the chewing, and you can cover up the veggie taste with fruit.
But if you can't make it happen with the veggies right now, at least try to get your nutrients through fruit, quality seeds like chia and quinoa, unprocessed grains, poultry, nuts- whatever you like to eat. Variety is important. I'm sorry that this issue cuts into your life so much, but there's still a lot of great stuff you can eat. Just eat whole unprocessed foods and keep moving. Good luck!

BUBBLEJ1 Posts: 2,981
8/6/12 3:06 A

I hide my veggies. I grate them really small and put them in sauces, ground meat etc. It could be worth a shot.

AUDREYUK Posts: 631
8/6/12 2:56 A

It sounds like you may need to see a psychologist to help you get over the mental barrier to trying new foods. From what you've said you obviously want to eat other things, you just can't without instantly getting sick. Perhaps you have a "selective eating disorder"?

When I lived in the UK, they had a TV series about selective eating disorder called Freaky Eaters and a lot of the people who went on the show (documentary style) eat exactly the way you describe eating.

Here are some clips from the show:

Edited by: AUDREYUK at: 8/6/2012 (02:58)
10LBJEN Posts: 146
8/6/12 2:20 A

UNIDENT Posts: 33,498
8/6/12 2:11 A

Your husband really should be considering you a bit more - making food you can't eat is very selfish!

Have you tried blending/processing vegetables into a mush and adding that to stews and sauces? You would not notice the vegetable-texture because there wouldn't be one, just a thick sauce.

CEMERSON69 SparkPoints: (0)
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8/6/12 1:55 A

I have the pallette of a child. Seriously. I don't eat seafood of any kind. I don't eat MOST vegetables. My favorite meals are PB&J, Mac n' Cheese, roast and potatos with carrots, and cereal.

I am looking for ways to get the nutrients available in things I don't eat, without actually eating them. The problem...when I eat onions, I throw up. Literally. Peppers, instant gagging and barely keeping food down. Mushrooms, asparagus, spinach...GAWD, I wish I could eat them. I try most things periodically (not onions unless it's accidentally). My tastebuds haven't changed since I was a child.

I always search for healthy and delicious recipies. When I find something that looks good, I have to immediately alter it to not include the vegetables. Unless it's carrots (fresh or cooked), green beans (I truly only like canned), cucumbers and corn. I love spicing my food with garlic but I can only handle garlic powder. When I bite into a chunk of garlic (no matter how small or how soft I always can tell!) I start gagging.

It's silly and it's embarrassing to be a 38 (almost!) year old woman who can't attend dinner parties, etc. because of the food. I also don't travel to new places, because I am afraid of the food! I am limiting my life and my health and I don't know what to do to change it. I've tried the whole 'force yourself to eat it and eventually you will like it' thing, nope...didn't work.

My husband is exactly opposite. He will eat ANYTHING! It's very frustrating because he cooks dinner and half the time, I can't eat it. I always try but end up not being able to finish! He gets very frustrated with me. I get upset because I'm hungry and I can't eat what he provides. I get angry at him because 'he didn't make something that I could eat'. Good Lord, what a freaking baby I am.

Anyway, I've tried to hire a nutritionist but they are so expensive it just isn't possible. I've tried everything that I can think of. If you have any ideas on how I can get the nutrients that I need, please do tell.

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