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Mothering › Groups › September 2012 Due Date Club › Discussions › Breastfeeding Diet Advice?!?!?!?

Breastfeeding Diet Advice?!?!?!?

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 

I know Ive talked (whined...) about this before on the board... but i could really use some advice and not getting it else where. DD is almost 4 weeks old and has an EXTREMELY sensitive tummy. Every night we go through the same thing where she ends up with gas/upset tummy and screams hysterically for 3-6 hours on end. It is always accompanied by lots of farting, silent refluxing, and sometimes projectile puking (out her nose and shoots for at least a foot at times),  Sometimes she cries to the point where Ive almost taken her to the ER because she cant seem to catch her breath she is screaming so hard. She seems to have a lot of sensitivities to foods in my diet, but cant seem to find anything I can safely eat. So far I have eliminated wheat, dairy, cauliflower, broccoli, beans, vega/sequel naturals protein shakes, any sort of vitamin containing iron. I am a vegetarian with strong vegan tendencies. I have skipped eating anything for a full 24 hours except 1 banana and a home made gluten free vegan peach millet muffin and she was fine that night. I can do that for a couple days, but I dont tihnk it will work in the long run.


Any advice on safe foods I CAN eat? I am going nuts. I end up crying along with her because I know Im causing her so much pain and I wish I didnt have to eat so that her tummy didnt hurt.


Pediatrician said that she "will get used to your diet" but its been 4 weeks and no improvement, it only seems to get worse. Lactation consultant said that my diet doesnt affect her but I know its BS because if I eat almost nothing her symptoms improve. She is getting plenty of milk, peeing a lot, gaining weight well, so its not a problem with her not getting enough.


Currently in the middle of hour 3 of hysterical screaming/projectile puking/farting with no end in sight. Tried colic calm but she kept puking it up....

post #2 of 19
Hi Alli, it sucks that your diet has to be so restricted and your baby girl is still so uncomfortable.

I'm concerned for you based on your previous posts and this one. It sounds like you're a great mama and wife, that you're taking care of everyone and doing your exercise and your businesses but without the necessary sleep and food to keep you going long term. (Even short term for me, I could never survive a day with your 1 hour sleep, a banana and a millet muffin. You have amazing stamina!)

Can you eat avocado? Non-gmo edamame? Soaked brown rice? Almond butter (or cashew) on apples? Is there an Ezekial bread that has ok ingrediants for you? Coconut oil added to smoothies? Homemade hummus with no additives or garlic or anything? Eaten with raw celery and carrots. Butternut squash roasted and topped with olive oil or butter substitute and lots of salt and pepper? Nettle tea is a good source of iron and minerals. Can you drink hemp milk? I saw a hemp based shake at whole foods once, I know you were doing your 100 calorie shake before.

I was a vegetarian for years and eventually decided to include animal products again so I will say this at risk of sounding like a total jerk: I'm not sure of your reasons for being vegan and don't want to offend you in any way, but if it's ok for you ethically maybe the temporary addition of eggs or fish could offer some protein and calories to get you through for a couple weeks without an allergic reaction from Annabelle?

A couple other random notes, can you go see a holistic doctor or allergy specialist? do you have issues with your digestion? Allergies yourself? Or with yeast-like frequent bladder or yeast infections, thrush, etc? Do you take probiotics or eat probiotic foods like kimchi or sauerkraut? A lot of food allergies are related to the quality of your digestion. I'm on a message board for gut health and a few women who were breastfeeding found that eating Bubbies sauerkraut with every meal (just a couple bites) and taking a probiotic helped their babies' digestion. Not a scientific study smile.gif Just based on three ladies in a convo I read. Another possibility to include grains in your diet again could be to soak them- you can look up the methods for various grains on the Internet but soaking will increase digestibility and make the nutrients more available to you.

I feel for you and really hope you find a solution.
post #3 of 19

If you haven't read it already, here is the Total Elim Diet Dr. Sears and his wife recommend:





It's extremely restrictive at first, until 2 weeks pass OR the colic improves if that happens first. Then you can add things back in. I'm worried about your inability to get any protein. You definitely want to eliminate all soy as that closely mimics dairy, and I think about 40% (could be a wrong number...but it's high) of babies who are milk protein intolerant/allergic are also sensitive to soy. In fact, based on what you've written above, I'm wondering if it's soy alone causing your continued issues. Which would suck for your diet, but maybe you'd be able to add beans back in!  


The link above is really informative and steps you through the process. I hope you find something that makes you feel proactive and also gives Annabelle relief. I've been through it, and it sucks. And I am about to elim dairy to help the reflux H has going on :(

post #4 of 19
Alli, I also worry for you. Reducing your caloric intake that much can lead to simply not producing enough breastmilk, then think of the problems you would face!? Traditionally an elimination diet does not involve taking every food group out at the same time, you rotate it to see if you can narrow it down to what is the offending food. Otherwise if you cut out everything at once you will not know which are the reactive foods and which are safe...I'd suggest asking your ped for a referral to a ped GI specialist, they might be able to see if there is a reason for A's discomfort above and beyond your diet as well.

Commonly the main things to cut are dairy, wheat, peanuts, chocolate, caffeine, and soy. I'm actually starting an elimination diet myself for similar reasons (my baby has reflux and I want to see if it will help) but I'm not cutting them all out at once! I'm picking 3 at a time to try to do a rushed elimination challenge but still bring able to eat as well.

Also, I'm not vegan or veggie (though I once was) but I prefer to eat that way. That said, during this time period I am eating more neat than usual to still get protein during this time. Normally meats are not reactive. Meat, pears, millet, sweet potatoes are all things that I know cause very few allergies in breastmilk....So I'm eating a lot more of those. And squash. I hope things get better for you all very soon but please don't starve yourself!
post #5 of 19

im also vegan and think something in my diet is irritatiting S- nothing like what you are going through. I cut out orange juice and I think that has helped. My suggestion to you is that I have been baking a lot of high protein gluten free muffins which have been an important part of my diet. i use coconut flour, ground nuts, oats, barley, quinoa flakes etc to replace wheat flour (i've got a lot of non-wheat flours and mix n match as i think sounds nice in a given recipe) and "chia eggs" to replace eggs in recipes (1T chia seeds + 3T water = 1 egg). i use rice or oat milk for milk because i dont know if S is sensitive to soy and i can get them nearby, but if you can get hemp or coconut or almond milks i think those are higher protein. because your protein shakes are important to your diet, you can get a different kind of protein powder that is less likely to irritate your baby's tummy- rice proteien or hemp protein maybe. I haven't made a protein shake since S was born but i HAVE to. it's high on my priority list. I use this one http://www.gardenoflife.com/ProductsforLife/FoundationalNutrition/RAWProtein/tabid/2204/Default.aspx and it claims to be easily digested... I'm still eating beans and cabbages even though S's farts bother him because 1) he's not suffering like your little one is, so it isn't as imperative that I find the culprit and 2) I HAVE to eat to be able to care for him, I break down if I don't eat food. From your list you are still eating lentils and spinach- maybe make a huge batch of lentil soup?  You are still eating potatoes and root vegetables- make a big tray of roasted vegetables? potatoes, beets, turnips, whatever, olive oil salt and pepper. I'm eating oatmeal every day, we add a lot of seeds and dried fruits to it to make it substantial. It's hard without beans, tofu, seitan, so I think you need to really focus on nuts, seeds, quinoa, and lentils. If you can think long enough (I cannot yet) you can easily sprout lentils which makes their protein easily available. I can't sprout yet- it requires rinsing them twice/day and I don't have it in me yet. if you are avoiding peanut butter you can use tahini on your gluten free muffins to get some more protein. i like tahini + salt + paprika. Good luck!!! 

post #6 of 19
Thread Starter 

Thanks everyone! I am going to try a modified Dr Sears elimination diet. I had been eating mostly salad with dried fruits, shelled hemp, and raw veggies (cucumber, bell peppers, olives, tomatoes) thinking that would be pretty neutral but it could be part of the offending problem. Going to try to stick to a breakfast of oatmeal, peach/pear, or gluten free muffins. Lunch of squash and grain like quinoa or brown rice or millet (I have a lot of winter squash right now) with maybe some sunflower seeds or other nut, and dinner of brown rice GF pasta with some sort of cashew sauce or something like that. I made a good cashew "cheese" stuffed brown rice shells with roasted butternut squash and sunflower seeds last week, so maybe ill try it again. Or just GF pasta with a big batch of roasted squash I feel like I have some sort of direction now with everyones help. Going to try to up the probiotics in my diet as well with fermented beverages (kevita maybe),


I do have a sensitive stomach as well, which is part of the reason I went vege/vegan but also because of the compassion for animals so it seems she has inherited this from me :( With the cost of the home birth, it isnt really in the budget at the moment to see any hollistic drs, but i do strongly believe in them. So going to stick to trying this for a few weeks and see what happens, then add things back in again. What I was really looking for was something like the dr sears elimination diet, somewhere to start. Since she has been collicky so much, I was looking for a clean baseline to start at and hten add things back in and figure out what is really bothering her.


Thanks again- and sorry for the whining!

post #7 of 19
Thread Starter 

Looking around at different BF websites, I also noticed I have a forceful letdown.




Going to try these positions since I usually just do good ol' craddle hold. While Im not eliminating diet as a cause, I think it does play a factor, this may also be a part of it worth trying to work with,

post #8 of 19
Allie i had a forceful letdown with ds and his poo was green and mucousy, nasty. It took care of itself though after a while.

Audrie still has acne quite a bit. Her pediatrician asked me to cut out dairy, caffeine and chocolate for now and see if the skin clears up and her vomiting improves.
post #9 of 19
Thread Starter 

We had some nasty green poo this morning. It tends to be more yellow/orange with a little green, but this morning was just straight green :(

post #10 of 19
Originally Posted by nukuspot View Post

Alli, I also worry for you. Reducing your caloric intake that much can lead to simply not producing enough breastmilk, then think of the problems you would face!?

Actually, this made me wonder...


Could you have oversupply?

post #11 of 19

Aha! Just saw the green poop post. I betcha a night of colic that block nursing will do the trick.


ETA: This is a good article too


post #12 of 19
We called it broccoli poop.
post #13 of 19

I was wondering the same thing about oversupply and foremilk/hindmilk imbalance. It stinks because even the poop symptoms are similar between that and food intolerances. Block feeding is amazing--I had a horrid oversupply and OALD with my first (I could spray 10ft across the room!) but started block feeding in the hospital with the rest. My engorgement and subsequent supply and letdown issues were SO MUCH BETTER.  We rarely if ever get green poop these days, though we are dealing with some icky mucus. Yay.  

post #14 of 19

I'm having the same questions about green poop being because of foremilk/hindmilk or food sensitivities. How do you know the difference? For the past two days, every other poop has been green and mucusy, but the rest have been the normal yellow.  He hasn't had any of the other symptoms (until this morning, of course, when he wakes up, fusses until I feed him, he eats and falls asleep. repeat for the past four hours), really. I don't know if he's gaining because we haven't weighed him in a week, but he's alert when awake and sleeping well for 1.5-3 hour stretches at night. He did develop some baby acne on his forehead yesterday morning. I've been block feeding since Sunday and stopped eating dairy and wheat as of yesterday - but I've read that dairy sensitivities sometimes take a week or more to clear up.


My midwife said not to worry but to keep her posted. DH says not to worry. 

post #15 of 19
Thread Starter 

I did 4 hour block feeding last night and pumped off oversupply before feeding (and gave to 1 year old) and yet fell victim to the gluten monster but yet had a better night. She was happiest laying in bed with me wiggling around and side lying nursing for about 2 hours. Slightly fussy, but wasnt crying. She eventually fell asleep next to me. I am still going to watch my diet because I do believe GF and vegan is best for both of us and my son is GF as well, so it should work out. I made a big batch of oatmeal pancakes this morning. Thought Id share the recipe as Im sure its great for BF mommas. I copied the recipe from my FB page.


Got oats? Got old bananas? Got frozen or fresh blueberries? You can make healthy yummy GF pancakes!


Ok, so Ive been making these once a week for Aiden (and me) for at least the past month and they are a hit and easy to make.


1.5 cups of GF (or not if you are watching gluten) rolled oats (not the quick cook kind, just plain rolled oats) ground.

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 soft banana

1.25 cup of non dairy milk (I use TJs Vanilla Coconut Beverage)

2 tbsp maple syrup (optional if you are using sweetened non-dairy milk and want to keep sugars down)

2 tbsp melted coconut oil

1/2 cup blueberries



1. Gind oats in the vita mix (if using non heavy duty blender you may need to stop and shake up oats to make sure all get powdered).


2. Dump oats into bowl and add baking powder and baking soda. Mix Well.


3. Add banana, coconut oil, non-dairy milk and maple syrup into empty blender. Blend well.


4. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients. Mix well.


5. Optional- Add some fresh ground flax meal for extra omegas and fiber.  Sprinkle over batter and mix well.


6. Add blueberries and mix gently.


7. Cook on well oiled griddle pan.


8. Try not to eat the entire batch (I usually have to double it or else I eat Aidens pancakes before he can get to them).

post #16 of 19
Can't wait to try the pancakes!!!! Thanks!
post #17 of 19
Alli and others- how do you block feed and maintain supply? Do you pump the other side? I think DS's awful gas issues could be a foremost imbalance. He only eats for maybe 10 minutes and only one side at a time. We still also have latch issues do that can be part of the problem. And I also think I'm dealing with a forceful letdown. Alli- how long do you pimp before nursing and you ate doing that every time? I really need one night without a freaking out baby and I am fairly convinced its all gas related.
post #18 of 19
Originally Posted by Jend1002 View Post

Alli and others- how do you block feed and maintain supply? Do you pump the other side? I think DS's awful gas issues could be a foremost imbalance. He only eats for maybe 10 minutes and only one side at a time. We still also have latch issues do that can be part of the problem. And I also think I'm dealing with a forceful letdown. Alli- how long do you pimp before nursing and you ate doing that every time? I really need one night without a freaking out baby and I am fairly convinced its all gas related.

There is a protocol for pumping off all the excess once a day, first thing in the morning. I will see if I can find it.


ETA: http://www.llli.org/faq/oversupply.html  Very comprehensive info on treating oversupply and OALD. Scroll to the "Strategies..." subheads.


With block feeding, there is no issue with supply because you are stimulating supply just the same amount, but you're doing it on the same breast multiple times in a row. The non-nursing breast will get a little engorged during the block for the first day or so, but it will soon adjust.  


The 10 min nursing, while not abnormal once they're past the first few days, could be indicative of foreceful letdown. If you can, let baby start your let down, pop him off and "catch" the initial let down in a prefold or hand towel. Then put him back on. Another trick to try is nursing reclined/against gravity. But most of this is covered in the link.

post #19 of 19
Alli--I'm making your pancakes right now! Yum.
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