I thought I paid my dues in the digestive department. I mean come on…there are few and far in between foods that I can have and don’t pay for later. When I was a baby, my parents had numerous trips to the hospital when they started introducing food. Probably one of the many reasons I am putting off introducing food until Zoey’s developed a stronger digestive system. However, that hasn’t saved me much stress in the food department when it comes to my daughter.
When she was about 8 weeks old she was really starting to have issues with her digestive system. Inconsistent bowels and repeated events of tossing turning and stirring trying to “work something out”. It’s funny, when you become a parent you start rooting on gas and poops like your child just accomplished an incredible feat. Truthfully, they have. A baby’s digestive system, I’ve learned, is so sensitive and so underdeveloped. Gas gets trapped like you wouldn’t believe in these “pockets” within the colon and it causes an incredible amount of pain. One of the many reasons you “can’t spoil a newborn” and should respond to their discomfort (cry).
Since I am so attune to my own body, I knew something must be up. At a routine visit at my D.O. pediatrician (LOVE her) I was telling her my concerns and she suggested a change to my diet. The top allergy for nursing babies is mom’s consumption of dairy. I’m vegan so clearly that wasn’t the issue. The second top allergy…soy. Ahhh a vegan’s staple are you KIDDING me!! Even though I really avoid processed soy products (alternative meats and cheeses) I do love a latte now and again and making different variations of tofu. However, I gave it up. It was more important to me that she slept well, pooped well, and was not in pain.
It helped…mostly. At my last pediatrician appointment a week or two ago I told her some new bowel concerns. Prior to discussing Zoey, I was telling her what I’d been through with my liver in Jan 2012 and how the liver specialist narrowed it down to a potential gluten allergy after many, many, MANY vials of blood. Well in February I found out I was pregnant. That mixed everything up. For the first time in my life, I didn’t have a sensitive stomach. Fast forward to 3 months postpartum and things were starting to go back to normal.
What great news did she give me this time? The third most common allergy is mom’s consumption of gluten. Especially if my body has no idea how to process it! You’ve GOT to be kidding me!? I fought it. Everything was adding up…I wasn’t losing weight, eczema was back, stomach pains were back, and a plethora of other details I won’t go into were all screaming at me…get rid of the gluten. Now, I’ve given up gluten numerous times in the past, and I hate it. I don’t even eat that much of it but when I want a vegan treat it usually involves gluten. I prayed about it and God was SCREAMING at me to get rid of it. Seriously at one point I had 3 signs in 3 hours and shouted “I’m ignoring you” but that only lasted a day. The day after the pediatrician appointment I went gluten-free. Yet again, not for me…but for Zoey (you see a theme here?)
So 5 days into it, she was a different baby. Less gas, better bowels, and even happier. Safe to say…I’m a believer. To be quite honest, it’s been 10 days…and I am loving it. I even convinced my husband to do it with us…family that’s gluten-free together stays together right? I’ll be surprised if he lasts beyond this week! As for the ladies of the house (even Lola) we’re sticking to gluten-free for good!