Wednesday, June 13, 2012

A Series of Thoughts: Allergies...

It's been a little bit since I wrote about little miss CGR.  I know I have tossed out little things here and there but what's up with my little girl!   Let's see...where do I begin?  My little girl is a skinny minny!  She just had her 18 month apt yesterday and she is finally over the 20 lb mark by 1 oz.  I've never been worried about her weight but she has always been really low on the weight percentages, not that I think those really matter, but as a mom you get asked a lot what percentage is she.  I think as long as she looks healthy and not missing any milestones then she is great! 

 When we found out she was allergic to milk, my doctor was concerned about her getting enough fat in her diet because fat helps with brain development.  Hence for a while, every time we saw her she recommended giving her more fries and fatty foods.  I never thought that was the answer.  While we do give her fries if we are having them, we increase her fats in other ways such as by sauteing in olive oil more often and giving her more good fats.  I restrict her sugars as much as possible since that is not a way to increase fats in her food as that is just sugar not fat.   She did get a special treat of a lollipop after her shots yesterday!
 She's a healthy eater over all.  We had some issues right after she had the stomach flu a couple months ago.  Not only did she drop off the weight chart, which concerned us all, but she stopped eating meats after she felt better enough to eat.  She has just started eating meats again.   When she is hungry she eats a ton but sometimes she just eats a little.  She loves rice and pasta and would eat it for every meal if we let her.   Since she's allergic to milk, she drinks soy milk and we have found some soy yogurts and vegan butters that she enjoys. We even found a good cream cheese that she will eat sometimes.  Thankfully, we breastfed until she was a year so we didn't have to experiment with which expensive formula we'd have to give her.  If you want to read about the changes I had to make to my diet to continue breastfeeding after we found out about her allergies you can read this post.

Feeding her has sometimes been a challenge when out and about in new places, but I always bring backups in my diaper bag just in case and online allergy menus are awesome.  A big challenge is making it clear when we are around new people that they really can't offer anything unless they ask us first.  We always have to check ingredients because even things that you wouldn't think would have milk in!  For example, Special K had bought some salt and pepper chips and she wanted some so he gave her a couple...well...shortly after she started getting hives because it had milk in it.  You wouldn't think salt and pepper chips would have milk but you always have to check because they sneak milk into so many things!
At her appointment before this one, we tested her baked egg allergy.  I baked a cake with eggs in it but no milk.  It had to be backed for at least 30 minutes and she didn't have any reaction to it!  YAY!  That opened up things she could eat.  She's now able to eat cakes and breads that have been baked for 30 minutes with eggs in them.  We haven't given her too much in this category but now we can give zucchini breads, banana breads, and cakes.  There are only a few boxed cake that doesn't already have milk in it so we have to be careful but now birthday's are a little easier.  I still bring a little piece or a vegan cupcake for her when going to a birthday party so she can have her own while others eat cake too. 

The doctors, both her allergy and pediatrician, have decided we are done with food challenge testing.  Where we give her the foods she might have reaction to and see if she reacts.  We did milk at a year and then the baked egg.  The baked egg was a go but the milk was definitely not.  She reacted to it within 5 minutes and had to give her benadryl, which is our lifesaver!  From here the plan is to wait until after she is 2 and do a full allergy screening with the allergy doctor.  He pretty much told me since she is my daughter that he's sure she's going to have lots of allergies and that he wants her to go through 2 allergy seasons before we do a test.  At that time, we'll test both foods and environmental allergies.  We already know she's allergic to dogs too so that is a bummer.  
 The dog allergy has been tough.  She LOVES her puppies like her momma does. (picture above of her with my friends dog...since I used all the best pics last post of her and the pups)  So, she wants to go cuddle with them but if she gets licked or if she cuddles too much poor thing will be a little uncomfortable for a bit.  Her reactions aren't severe but she has eczema because of her allergy to them.  We use Aquaphor and hydro-cordozone cream to battle the eczema she has and it has helped a ton!  We also use Cetaphil body wash or sensitive skin Dove soap.  Since we switched to these, her skin has gotten a ton better.  We also give her Claritin every morning to help with her allergies as I know she is like me and is probably allergic to the pollen that is ever present in this area the last couple months.

It sucks to know that I passed down my allergies to her, but considering that almost all my sisters and their kids all go to the same allergy's not a surprise.  She is the only one who has the food allergies and with her allergy lingering longer she may not grow out of those allergies for a long time.  We've managed them pretty well so far and I think we'll do fine.  Will be harder once she goes on to pre-school because I know peanut butter is prevalent in kids diets and peanuts is something we haven't ever considered testing as that is a bad allergy.  But we'll tackle that when we get there.

I started this post thinking I'd talk about her talking more and silliness but I guess we'll start with all her allergies and then next post about her I'll go into more fun stuff. :)  Stay tuned for that to come.

Happy Eating!!

Do you have any food allergies?  Kids with food allergies?  How do you manage them?


  1. A friend who has a little boy with allergies just posted this on FB... thought you might be interested:

  2. I'm gluten free and mostly dairy free (I can eat dairy that's in baked goods but I can milk, cheese, or yogurt). It's tough, but it was easier having these restrictions to my own diet than taking care of a kid with food intolerances. My 9 yo boy is now gluten free (and was dairy free for 2 months while we sorted through things). And my daughter is allergic to strawberries and chocolate. I'm so thankful we don't have nut allergies! But, I'm more thankful for our friends that have allergies too as we tend to stick together. We've been invited to a GF/CF birthday party and I was thrilled that my kids and I could have cake too. When I go out with some of my girlfriends, I can always count on Amy or Kandi to bring some fantastic GF desserts.

    I will say that this is so much easier with a 9 year old than someone to young to speak for herself. And my 9 year old has felt SO MUCH BETTER (I just wish we'd discovered this sooner) that he's not even tempted to cheat and he reads that labels himself.

  3. Important stuff. I always have Sissy-friendly treats with me when we are out and about, especially at the vet's, so they can treat her without causing problems.


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