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Not digesting food

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Ok, I know we've talked about this a lot before, but I'm just trying to sort through recent symptoms in my brain and things are not making sense to me.

DD's poops for the last few months have been loose, sometimes horrid smelling (maybe 25% of the time), occasional blood- and off and on with undigested food. With these symptoms, I would think that things are moving too quickly through her system, right? BUT- (TMI) tonight she pooped (completely loose, all sorts of undigested food) and there were whole lentils in it. The last time she ate lentils was yesterday morning.

So: 1) This tells me that things aren't moving through her gut at warp speed, otherwise those lentils would have been gone in yesterday's super giant (also loose) poop.
2) How on earth does a lentil go through an entire digestive system, for 20 hours, without being digested?! They were very well cooked. You could mush them between your tongue and the roof of your mouth and they would disintegrate. I mean, 20 hours- shouldn't there be at least ONE part of her digestive track that is actually doing something? Even if her stomach acid is low, there should be other enzymes and things in different areas breaking things down.... I just don't get it.

Give me some ideas of why/how this is possible. (My brain is pretty fried right now- from too much stress in the past week, and from going off grains [again]. So I really need some help sorting this out. I also really need help figuring out what to feed this kid, but that is a whole 'nother thread....)

eta: DD has gained almost an inch in height and lost almost 2 pounds in the last 2 months, so obviously this is a big issue, she's not absorbing nutrients.
post #2 of 9
I am just subbing for answers as I have the same problem with my DD. I'm really tired of taking her to the doc and asking questions about this type of thing and being told things like "It's toddler diarrhea, it's normal, it will pass." In our case no one is concerned because she's gaining weight just fine. But not only do I wonder if she's gaining weight mainly because she nurses like a fiend still, I also wonder, like you, how it could be "toddler diarrhea" and just passing too quickly when I often see meals from 24 hours ago in there. And with her, every single poo is undigested food. Sometimes it's in soft poo, sometimes it's in loose poo, but it's always full of her meals, looking pretty much like they went in. And they always smell almost, rancid or something.

Sorry to be replying with no help, I just came on here to look into going back on an elimination diet with her and saw your post so I decided to sub.
post #3 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by changingseasons View Post
So: 1) This tells me that things aren't moving through her gut at warp speed, otherwise those lentils would have been gone in yesterday's super giant (also loose) poop.
2) How on earth does a lentil go through an entire digestive system, for 20 hours, without being digested?! They were very well cooked. You could mush them between your tongue and the roof of your mouth and they would disintegrate. I mean, 20 hours- shouldn't there be at least ONE part of her digestive track that is actually doing something? Even if her stomach acid is low, there should be other enzymes and things in different areas breaking things down.... I just don't get it.

eta: DD has gained almost an inch in height and lost almost 2 pounds in the last 2 months, so obviously this is a big issue, she's not absorbing nutrients.
But the enzymes don't get released if the stomach acid is too low! Dd had undigested food in her poop even when she would only poop (w/o "help") once a week. Obviously, nothing was working there, either. How long did you get to try the Brainchild zinc? I swear, I cannot wait until you get all your test results in.
The three things that have been most helpful for us have been
zinc
grain free - I was inspired after finally getting my hands on the GAPS book, I don't feel I can do the whole diet w/o eggs so we're still eating least-starchy beans and moderate tubers - made a huge difference in poop. The book really explained to me that the starch can't be digested when the villa are damaged so continuing to eat it means - undigested food - continued inflammation - no healing. I thought the whole focus was more like the candida diet where they were being eliminated to stop feeding yeast or something and I never felt that was much of our problem.
magnesium

She has FINALLY gained weight 2 lbs - since the beginning of December. It is so hard because every person is different in how we got to this wrecked point and I have tried so, so many different things over the last 2 years that helped a little or did nothing, or dd reacted to.

I know that zinc is involved with Th1/Th2 skewing, so I think that would be a really, really important supp to get in her.
post #4 of 9
Thread Starter 
But the thing is that it goes off and on for her- sometimes food is digested (but the poop is still loose), and sometimes it's coming out whole.

We did the Brainchild supps for about a week I think.

DD has been grain free for about 3 weeks. And the beans, lentils, and potato trials have failed (oh- and of course the positive IgE for eggs), and I'm starting to REALLY freak out about what to feed this hungry kid (and myself.) Trying to keep myself sane and not make any decisions until we get those test results.... fingers crossed that they come in the next couple days!!!
post #5 of 9
When we were first dealing with this, it was zinc and digestive enzymes that helped (particularly cellulase digesting enzymes to handle the fiber). Some things (like cooked carrots, of all weird things) never digested properly. Interesting though, I think the probiotics might be helping with that.

I've also found that pre-processing food matters. If I feed DS whole dried cranberries, they come out whole. If I cut them in half, they get completely digested. Same with grapes, although sometimes the skins still show up. And with beans - mash them with a fork and they digest, leave them whole and they don't. So I think the external "barriers" - skins, etc are a big issue for him. We'll see if the probiotics helped with that, I haven't fed him fruit in several days.
post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamafish9 View Post
When we were first dealing with this, it was zinc and digestive enzymes that helped (particularly cellulase digesting enzymes to handle the fiber). Some things (like cooked carrots, of all weird things) never digested properly. Interesting though, I think the probiotics might be helping with that.

I've also found that pre-processing food matters. If I feed DS whole dried cranberries, they come out whole. If I cut them in half, they get completely digested. Same with grapes, although sometimes the skins still show up. And with beans - mash them with a fork and they digest, leave them whole and they don't. So I think the external "barriers" - skins, etc are a big issue for him. We'll see if the probiotics helped with that, I haven't fed him fruit in several days.
Are you sure they're actually getting digested, or is it that you just can't see them in the poop because they're mashed up? That's where I'm getting stuck right now. I'm afraid to mash or puree things, because I'm not sure that actually makes it easier to digest, or if it just makes it harder to see undigested.... if that makes any sense.

I am terrified to try digestive enzymes with her, after the severe reactions that I had to 3 different brands. I'm also scared to try probiotics after hearing that 3 people around here saw blood in the stool after giving them. I certainly can't risk anymore damage.
post #7 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by changingseasons View Post
Are you sure they're actually getting digested, or is it that you just can't see them in the poop because they're mashed up? That's where I'm getting stuck right now. I'm afraid to mash or puree things, because I'm not sure that actually makes it easier to digest, or if it just makes it harder to see undigested.... if that makes any sense.

I am terrified to try digestive enzymes with her, after the severe reactions that I had to 3 different brands. I'm also scared to try probiotics after hearing that 3 people around here saw blood in the stool after giving them. I certainly can't risk anymore damage.
For the food, I'm pretty sure it's getting digested - I figure half cranberries wouldn't be a whole lot harder to spot than whole cranberries, for example. Maybe another indicator would be to see if your DD seems less hungry if you puree? (That would suggest she's digesting more that way).

You have a really different situation than I do, so I'm not sure this thinking applies, but for me, doing nothing was causing damage, and that made it easier to try stuff. I figured there weren't too many things that I couldn't reverse if need be.

I hope you get those test results soon!
post #8 of 9
Personally, if your babe is digesting some foods okay and not others, I would possibly suspect an intolerance to those she is not digesting well. Digestive enzymes would probably help alot. I hear ya on being afraid to try them though....I'm in the same boat with my DS who had reactions to store bought probiotics as well. He is, however, tolerating homemade water kefir so far. So, I'm hoping we can boost his gut flora this way instead. We are on the hunt for digestive enzymes that he will be able to tolerate as well....he reacts to just about everything and is only able to eat about 5-8 different foods right now.
post #9 of 9
I'm kind of in the same boat. I'm feeling pretty frustrated and desperate myself these days. I've eliminated all grains (except rice but that'll be next as soon as I can figure out what to replace it with) from my dd's diet at this point - they would pass right through her. She is still eating potatoes though I'm pretty sure they're a problem too, but once again, what else can she eat.
I did find that once she started taking enzymes her poops looked more digested, though still loose, so I think that's a good way to go.
One other thing I'm starting to do is cook her food in a crockpot the night before so it is all "pre-digested."
I think even though you might not be able to tell if something has actually been digested because you mashed it for her it is still making it easier for her tummy to handle and that's the priority, right? I understand the dilemma though. I'm questioning my thought even as I right it.
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