Sunday, June 16, 2013

Update on the Dairy-Free Experiment

I am reminded of when my child was an infant and we first discovered he had food allergies (or hyper-sensitivities). We cut out all milk (aka dairy). He was clearly better, but he was still screaming more than what's normal. The next thing on the list per the GI Specialist was soy so we cut that out. About this time I started keeping a food diary, documenting what I ate and when he had a bad moment. I was able to make a clear correlation with wheat. Once we got all three things out of his diet, he became the happy little bouncing baby that everyone dreams of having. I was never truly sure he had an allergy to soy.

After 3 weeks of giving up all dairy products during our recent experiment, there was no denying that he was much better, but he was still coughing and snuffing more than he should. I mentioned to my husband that maybe we should cut out gluten again and see if that helps. "I was just thinking the same thing," he said. Oh boy! Here we go again! We've been doing this for one week now. On day 5 we both commented once again that it appears to be helping. This is good and bad. I'm happy that we've figured out the potential problem and we can help him get better. But, I will admit I'm a bit bummed that this is going to require big lifestyle changes on our part. You can't just pop in a pizza or swing through the drive-thru in those busy moments. It requires planning and thinking. We will adjust. And we will all be healthier for it.

I have given up these things with him. And so long as I'm putting things out there, why hold back? I do not really drink milk, but I do like cheese and I love having a parfait for breakfast. So most every morning I was eating blueberries or strawberries with plain yogurt and granola. Yum! I figure I'm getting my probiotics this way too. For about the last 6 months or so (its hard to remember when things start), I've been really gassy. It's embarrassing. I even considered taking something for it. After about a week of giving up all dairy, the gas is gone. Also, about a year ago I started breaking-out every month, right before I "started". I've never done this, not even as a teenager. I bought new facial cleaning products. Nothing helps. I finally decided its hormonal, perhaps I'm pre-menoposal and this is just going to be part of it. Until...I did not break-out this month! I've never thought I'd be anxious for my time of the month, but now I'm curious to see if this was a total fluke or if it has to do with the milk in my diet.

To summarize our update: we are officially a milk-free family and have the potential to be gluten-free as well. I will continue to post about our journey and provide recipes and other helpful items we learn along the way. Already I've been reading a few new books which are about to lead us down new paths that I will share. Let the journey continue!

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