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Thread: Considering FF due to allergies

  1. #1

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    Unhappy Considering FF due to allergies

    My DD of almost 6 mths old has been diagnosed with dairy protein (not lactose) and egg allergies, but many of her symptoms are not getting better after more than a month of removing these from my diet (and feeling all the worse for it - so tired and physically weak). It's doing my head in to try an figure out what I might have eaten, etc etc that may be making her sick (blood in stools) so am beginning to think that FF with an allergy formula is the only way I can control exactly what goes into her!

    Apart from the allergy thing BFing is going quite well and I have lots of milk, she has good attachment so I am feeling guilty as anything to consider changing to formula. The Paed Allergist suggested Pepti Junior after 6 months if that's the way I want to go.



    Has anyone out there had a similar experience?
    Last edited by Berrybaby; January 3rd, 2010 at 07:38 PM.

  2. #2

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    hun. This is a very difficult situation. Ordinarily with allergies, breast milk is the preferred option. However you have already gone to considerable effort to modify your own diet and things are still not right. I really don't know what the answer is, but I do think it is reasonable to consider all options. If you decide to switch to allergy formula, then I hope you can do so without guilt. Cutting milk protein out of your diet is a really tough thing and I really admire you for doing that. That really is a big commitment to your DD and you should be proud. This has enabled her to be exclusively bf for 6 months which has given her a fantastic start.

    I wish you all the best with your decision, and hope that things do improve for you both. You are doing an awesome job.

  3. #3

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    Hugs. This must be such a hard decision. Firstly I am pro breast feeding but if you've done all that you can then maybe a calculated switch to formula would be the best. A big congrates to you for persisting this far.

    My SIL struggled with my niece for months until the pead put her on a formula that required a script. I am sure it was Pepti???? After a a week or so she was a different baby. Additionally my SIL takes my niece to a chiropractor that specialises in allergies and this has helped tremendously apparently.

    HTH

  4. #4

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    How long does it take for a change to be expected when modifying your diet for BFing?

  5. #5

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    DS2 had an intolerance to dairy protein (blood in his stools too). I cut dairy from my diet & we saw an improvement within days. I was lucky & only had to do it for a couple of months.
    I can understand your frustration it's not easy, you have done such a good job, for it to not be working must be doing your head in.

    Have you thought about maintaining your supply while you trial the formula?

  6. #6

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    Hi,

    The allergy road is a rocky one for parents and babies. I wonder, how was your little one diagnosed with these allergies? Are there symptoms other than blood in the stools?
    Sometimes, even after the cause of the allergy has been removed, it takes some time for the gut to recover. Mothers of babies with cows milk allergy also have to be detectives, needing to read labels to avoid the protein in foods other than milk - whey and casein used in baked goods and by products of egg. Or there may be a another protein that hasn't yet been identified that is causing problems.
    What is your allergist's plan for the future where your little one is concerned? What advice have you been given about introducing solids?
    The other thing to consider is that, as much as foreign proteins in breastmilk may be contributing to the problem, breastmilk has an anti-inflammatory effect on the body, and this is protective where allergies are concerned. It also supports the baby's immune system, making secondary infections etc less likely.
    Are there others in your family with allergies? How do they present? This can give you a clue to the future with your child.
    In his book "Colic Solved" Bryan Vartabedian has a great chapter on food allergies and their impact on the gut. He is also presenting at the Australian Breastfeeding Association seminars in Brisbane, Canberra, Melbourne and Launceston in March. (His book is available through Mothers Direct)
    Many mothers find it useful to see a dietician, to ensure that you are eating properly - it is a tough gig, mothering when you are hungry, and constantly worried that what you eat will affect you baby.
    Breastfeeding is important, and mothers who maintain breastfeeding, in my opinion, have more options in dealing with their child's condition than non breastfeeding mothers. It is a difficult decision.
    Last edited by MantaRay; January 4th, 2010 at 10:34 PM.

  7. #7

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    I agree with Barb about investigating your bubs allergies with your specialist before you switch over. Even though my SIL's dd was switched to formula this was no long term fix and even at nearly 3 she is still struggling and her main diet is the formula. I often think if she'd be better if my SIL did persist with Bfing (which she gave up at 6 weeks). Just to add that my SIL went through months of hell to get the right formula, although initially my SIL didn't seek medical advice for my nieces isues.

    Please keep us posted.

  8. #8

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    I did the RPA Friendly Food allergy elimination diet when BF with allergy issues. I had to go off dairy and soy, and foods high in salicilytes. We found that she and my other daughter are allergic to milk protein, soy, almonds, oats and bananas. BUT she had other intolerances as well. It was a hard road at first, but once we got out diet worked out, it was so worthwhile.

    I BF until she was 18 months and weaned herself, my goal was 2 years.

    I found the diet to be hard at first. It took me a good 6-8 weeks to adjust myself. Make sure you keep your proteins up to keep your energy up. Start your day with proteins in order to keep you going throughout the day.

    I would have eggs on toast, or baked beans on toast. I made my own bread to keep chemicals and allergens out of our diets. I would have bacon or ham as well.

    For lunch, carbs are helpful in getting you throughout the day.... then for dinner less carbs and more meat.

    BBQ's and stir frys are your friends. And while at first you look longingly at other foods, you can adjust!

    Using rice milk as your alternative for milk sources you can do heaps of recipes and nuttlex instead of butter. After doing this for 3 years now, I'm good. We are a dairy free house.

    Goodluck on your journey. It is a hard one, but if you choose to go down it, it get much easier as you go, and you find yourself adjusting to the lifestyle.

  9. #9

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    Thank you all for your support and responses... I hope this reply encompasses nearly everyone!

    If I do try FF, it will be a gradual process - last time DH tried to feed DD EMB from a bottle she refused the bottle, so it looks like she's become a real booby baby! It may take some work to interest her in a bottle even before putting the supposedly yukky smelling HA formula in it. During the 'trial period' I'll definately keep my supply going in case it doesn't work out (or I find that FF is more of a hassle than the diet).

    I guess part of why I'm finding the decision so hard is that I'm open minded each way and can see the pros and cons of both. There's still almost 2 weeks until DD is 6 mths old but will keep you posted on how it goes.

  10. #10

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    Default Still BFing!

    Hello all, sorry it's been so long since my first post. Well, as you can see we're still BFing 100% of milk feeds! I really didn't think I could handle it, but my body finally 'acclimatised' to the dairy and egg free diet ? the sliver lining being that I am now 7 kg below pre-preg weight which is good as I started out a bit on the heavy side. It really is the magic diet, but maybe the idea that even tiny quantities of dairy and egg are almost poison to DD has made me more disciplined than ever before.

    DD took really well to solids (once I figured out she thought rice cereal ? even with EBM ? was very ordinary and she much preferred pear puree) and her digestive system is much happier. From time to time we have a set back but no more blood in stools ? phew.

    Think teething has made her go off her solid food and she has gone back to needing a night feed ? at least it?s so quick and easy with BF.

    You?ll be glad to know that her paediatric allergist strongly encouraged me to continue with BF for as long as possible as the benefits outweigh anything she?s exposed to through my milk.

    Thank you for all your support and ideas.

  11. #11

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    Congratulations everything is going well. Depite the road being rough for the first 6 months you now have so many positives in your life, I hope things continue to improve in the future.

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