Does Limiting Sugar & Sweets in Your Child’s Diet Now Make Them Rebel Against You Later?

This is from the DrMomOnline archives from TEN YEARS AGO!!

That means a couple things…

First, the child I am referencing in this blog post is now FIFTEEN years old!!

Second, the same ‘child’, and her younger brother, have been home schooled since the school year immediately following the one in the blog post… with “Nutrition at School” being one of my top 3 reasons for pulling them out of school at the time!

So, I suppose you can imagine that things didn’t really get any better at the school after the particular episode referenced below! {cheesy smile}

It’s all good. Home school has been a blessing beyond anything I could have ever imagined! (And I’m STILL not any good at it!)




Let’s head back to January 2008:


Today I’m going to re-visit a subject I talked about quite a while ago on this site. Many parents ask me, “Aren’t you afraid of your kids rebelling against you because of your strict nutrition rules?”

do think about this a lot. My daughter has actually shown signs of this at school during all their various parties and celebrations where they serve sweets to the kids. At the class Christmas party, one of the activities the kids participated in was decorating a sugar cookie. I think I actually saw her salivating as she waited her turn! You’ve never seen a cookie decorated with such speed and determination! I suppose because she rarely has anything like this, she does go a little loopy at the opportunity!

I always tell her that as long as she has “filled up with health first” she can sample a little bit of the sweet, if she chooses. It’s interesting how the word ‘sample’ means something completely different to a kid! I had to whisper in her ear several times, “Put the cookie down, sweetie.” I swear she’d try to polish off an entire cake if someone put it in front of her!

Parents who know my health and nutrition beliefs find this hilarious, of course. I do too, at times!

(The part I don’t find quite so hilarious is how often sugar & sweets are provided at school… and in sports. What on earth?! How does this build healthy, attentive brains and strong, resilient bodies?? It doesn’t. And don’t even get me started about using sugar as a REWARD for accomplishments!! Good grief. How bass-ackward is THAT?!)

So, what am I to do? The way it stands right now, she doesn’t have ‘sweets’ like this at home, in her lunch, or when we go out to eat. Not even when we go to grandma and grandpa’s house! Along with us, she will enjoy birthday cake on occasion, or a special pie for Thanksgiving, Christmas, etc. We’ve even been known to go out for ice cream! Once in a great while we might grant a request for dessert at home. When we do, it’s organic frozen yogurt or organic yogurt with granola and some berries. In the summer we make homemade popsicles. Several times a year, the kids and I will bake organic cookies together. They may have one per day for a couple days, then they usually forget about them!



If I were to listen to the advice of many well-intentioned others, it would be to “chill out” and give my daughter sweets on a more regular basis so that she doesn’t over-indulge when she is exposed to it outside of our home. I suppose I understand that kind of rationale. Initially, it seems to make sense. Then I remember that I’m not doing this to be controlling. I’m doing it because it’s my job as a parent to protect my children and give them the best opportunities I can. I also remember that she’s only 5… she doesn’t have the maturity to make the best health choices for herself yet. For now, Dr. Hubby & I proudly wear the Nutritional Pants in our family!

I have a few challenges with the theory of giving her a bit of sugary, sweet, ‘junk’ food on a regular basis. First of all, it’s bad for her. Let’s not forget that. There’s no possible way to argue that this helps her in any health-related way. I’ve also been advised that she needs to eat like this so she can fit in with society… because “everybody else eats it”. Yet another comment that makes me want to home school and keep my kids in a bubble! Look around us… I do NOT want my children eating the way the majority of ‘society’ does! That is definitely not a selling point!

As parents, can you imagine if we bought into the “because everyone else is doing it” theory for other things, like drugs, alcohol, sex…? I don’t think so!

Another thing – I think that giving my daughter her daily dose of sugary, sweet snacks would be like giving a recovering alcoholic a daily drink… you know, so they don’t go overboard when that party comes along! Sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it?!

Finally, I have no idea whether the daily dose theory would even prevent the once-in-awhile “freaking out” about sweets that she experiences. I could give her a cookies and ice cream every single day, and she may very well still inhale the entire cake at her next birthday party! Who knows!

What I do know is that I’m perfectly comfortable with the healthy food and nutrition guidelines I’ve set for our kids. It’s just the rest of society that doesn’t seem so comfortable! Soon enough, they’ll be spending more time ‘out there in the real world’ and they’ll be making their own choices. I don’t kid myself that I’ll be able to make every food decision for them. But I CAN teach them now what foods create health and which ones create toxicity. They do understand that… whether they like it or not is another story!

Oh well, just another learning experience in the lifelong journey of raising healthy kids!




The TEN YEAR update:

Nope. There has been no World War Rebellion over sugar… some battles here and there, but all is good. They are healthy, happy, respectful,  intelligent, uber-talented, and hilarious young people. Whew! Dr. Hubby & I have been blessed!

In all honesty, my kids still love their sweets! But, they don’t consume them nearly as much as they could. We still don’t have much at home… even though they do exist in our little corner of the world. The kids (15 and 12) know that sugar is horrific for their current & future health, and they know there is NO way in H-E-double-hockey-sticks they are going to have anything sugary (or grain-based) if their immune system isn’t totally up to snuff. Since God clearly has a sense of humor, my daughter LOVES to bake… and would love to do so as a career some day. I’m trying to brain wash her to become a “Keto Gourmet Chef”, but so far it’s not sticking!

So, we do the best we can while still enjoying the heck outta’ life. We fuel up with healthy foods each day (healthy fats & oils, clean protein, the least toxic vegetables and limited fruit …. check out the FREE Bull’s Eye Daily Food Guide that we use as our foundation for nutrition each day!!). We look at sugar on labels together. We opt for grain-free choices much of the time. But sugar is definitely still there. They know a lot more about health – how it’s gained and how it’s lost. They get it. I’ve been told they do pretty well making healthy choices, even without Dr. Mom around!





Dr. Colleen Trombley-VanHoogstraat (“Dr Mom Online”) is a popular personality in Natural Health & Wellness and is in her 23rd year of active practice in Michigan, along with her husband Dr. Marc VanHoogstraat. She’s also the proud mom of two rather fabulous kiddos that she currently home schools. Her unique perspective of the science of Wellness provides predictable solutions and transformational results for thos

e struggling with chronic health issues, as well as those seeking lifelong health. To discover her simple strategies for creating better health through nutrition, movement, mindset, cellular detoxification, and metabolic re-setting, jump on board as a regular reader of Dr Mom Online when you plug in your name and email address.

*** Be sure to download your personal copy of “The Bull’s Eye Daily Food Guide”  – it’s my FREE gift to you! This is your single-glance tool to simplify nutrition, maximize fat loss & metabolic flexibility, and optimize vibrant health & longevity! You will definitely want this tool posted in your kitchen or on your phone for reference! Claim your copy!

For more of Dr. Colleen’s Wellness Lifestyle books, check out her library available online at

Dr. Trombley

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 0 comments