"In Their Own Words" is a blog series we share to bring you "real life" experiences from other mothers and their families. Would you like to share your story? Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to get started.
^^Here^^ are the before and after pictures of Sara's second child, who has some food allergies. Read on to find out what made the difference for their family.
When you don’t have a baby with food allergies, it’s easy to take their health for granted. Smooth, clear baby skin and perfect breastfed baby stools are the norm. My first baby was just like that.
I assumed my second would be as well, but just a few weeks into her life I began to notice that something was amiss. Her face, trunk, elbows, and knees were covered in eczema. I avoided taking pictures of her because it made me sad to see. When she would have a bowel movement, it was almost always green and filled with mucous.
At first, I thought that perhaps I had lactose overload. I began to block feed diligently, but it didn’t help at all. On the advice of my naturopath, I started down the path of a Total Elimination Diet (TED). I followed the diet outlined by Dr. Sears for breastfeeding mothers, but there are many variations.
When I first started the diet, I looked for loopholes wherever possible. I hated being so restricted. As a result of “cheating” on the diet, my baby’s skin and gut were not healing the way they should. After a couple months, I decided I needed to re-commit to the diet, and I started over.
The results were amazing within just a few short days. Her skin was clear for the first time in months, and I finally started seeing yellow, seedy stools. It validated me that I was making the right choice for my baby’s health. I have been able to slowly add new foods to my diet over these past months, and my diet is becoming more varied as time goes on.
My baby is 8 months old now, and is thriving! She is mostly exclusively breast-fed, but is slowly exploring food for herself through baby-led weaning.
People have asked me, “Why not just use formula?” It’s a valid question. It’s not fun being on this diet. The thought of using formula has certainly crossed my mind more than once.
However, my reasoning is multi-faceted: 1) I am going to have to figure out my baby’s food allergies at one point or another, 2) I’m super cheap and didn’t want to pay for hypoallergenic formula and bottles, and 3) It is very possible that even with hypoallergenic formula, she could develop an allergy to an ingredient.
I made the choice to continue breastfeeding as long as it was feasible. Even with all of my little one’s health issues, I wouldn’t change a thing!
To new moms who are dealing with this: get connected with other allergy moms. The best advice I have received has been from moms who have walked this path before me. It makes such a big difference when you have people in your mama tribe who are able to support you because they have been there! Nurse on, mamas.
Did/does your sweet pea have food allergies? How did you manage to breastfeed?
Chandler-Gilbert La Leche League
Live, Latch, Love
August 13, 2016 from 4:30 – 8:30 pm
Click HERE for more info
Phoenix La Leche League: Live, Latch, Love
As part of the LLL area conference
August 26th, 5-7 PM
Embassy Suites Biltmore
La Leche League Conference
August 26-28, 2016
Embassy Suites Biltmore
Register Here: www.lllofaz.org/area-conference
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