or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Women's Health  › Allergies › Congestion from dairy = allergy/intolerance? How to handle?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Congestion from dairy = allergy/intolerance? How to handle?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Hi, I've been lurking here lately trying to figure out my DDs chronic nighttime congestion and poor sleep habits. We've just come off a 3-week dairy elimination diet where her congestion improved and she slept better (although not as well as I'd like still!).

The last couple of days, we've started dairy again and I've noticed that DDs nose is stuffy again, esp. at night and that she sleeps poorly. I also noticed that my nose stuffs up with dairy (within a few hours of ingestion) and my food cravings shoot through the roof.

My question now is whether this indicates an allergy or an intolerance and what do to now. Maybe that's a no-brainer - just keep ourselves off dairy?? How do you all deal with intolerances? What implications do they have longterm? Can they turn into allergies? Can they cause damage to the gut? Help for the newbie please!
post #2 of 11
I think a true allergy would present itself in the form of rashes, hives and eventually anaphylaxis.

I believe an intolerance effects the immune system in gut issues and congestion type stuff.

Dairy intolerant people who do not go off of dairy have high rates of diabetes, arthritis, bowel issues and other auto-immune problems. My dh's family is riddled with these and we are the only ones who do not consume dairy.
post #3 of 11
Sounds like your dd has an inherited tendency to dairy intolerance.

Keep cutting out dairy. The good news is, b/c bfing protects the gut and immune system, so she should outgrow it in time. 6 mos -2 yrs is average.

http://www.kellymom.com/babyconcerns...nsitivity.html
post #4 of 11
I get the same way with cow's milk products- but I've discovered that I can handle goat milk products and butter (from cow's milk) without problems. I've heard that many people who have problems with pasturized milk products do fine on raw milk products.

I suggest going off all dairy again for a few weeks, then trying another form of dairy to test for tolerance. I'd test EITHER goat milk OR butter OR raw milk- not all at once, so you can isolate any reactions that you have.
post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chanley
Dairy intolerant people who do not go off of dairy have high rates of diabetes, arthritis, bowel issues and other auto-immune problems. My dh's family is riddled with these and we are the only ones who do not consume dairy.
Interesting... and scary! My grandmother has struggled with arthritis, bowel issues, and diabetes in later life. My mother is about to be diagnosed as diabetic (it's only a matter of time until her blood sugar reaches that point). She always hated milk but was forced to drink it. BTW, do you have a source for that info or is just anecdotal? It makes sense to me on an intuitive level.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruthla
I suggest going off all dairy again for a few weeks, then trying another form of dairy to test for tolerance. I'd test EITHER goat milk OR butter OR raw milk- not all at once, so you can isolate any reactions that you have.
Thanks for the suggestion - I hadn't thought of that. I will do that. When we reintroduced dairy, DD had some pasteurized and some raw cheese (at a family member's house). I try to buy only raw dairy, so I'll try that next time. Then I'll try raw goat's milk once my neighbors' goats are finished kidding!

Quote:
Originally Posted by DaryLLL
Keep cutting out dairy. The good news is, b/c bfing protects the gut and immune system, so she should outgrow it in time. 6 mos -2 yrs is average.
She's already nearly 3. Boo hoo. I think we might be lifers w/ regards to dairy intolerance.
post #6 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by MamaE
She's already nearly 3. Boo hoo. I think we might be lifers w/regards to dairy intolerance.

Oh! I assumed we were talking about a young bfed baby. Was she bfed? Did she always have issues? Did you never eliminate dairy completely while bfing?

If she had dairy through your milk from day 1, she didn't get the gut protection a baby would who was diagnosed early with dairy sensitivity. I didn't understand you were just figuring this out with a 3 yr old.
post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaryLLL
Oh! I assumed we were talking about a young bfed baby. Was she bfed? Did she always have issues? Did you never eliminate dairy completely while bfing?

If she had dairy through your milk from day 1, she didn't get the gut protection a baby would who was diagnosed early with dairy sensitivity. I didn't understand you were just figuring this out with a 3 yr old.
: Yes, I am just figuring this out. She was/is BFed, never had a drop of formula or cow's milk. (As a rule, I don't believe in cow's milk, but I've allowed yogurt and some cheese.) I was/am very careful about her nutrition. We are not junk-fooders by any means (aside from my occasional ice cream benders). We follow, more or less, Garden of Eating/NT. (I'm not completely obtuse, only partially. ) She had mild eczema as an infant, but it went away within the first few months. She never had any other overt allergy symptoms. I gave up dairy for a period when she was a newborn (around age 2 months) and saw no significant improvement. There are no dairy allergies in my family.

I always just thought she a poor sleeper b/c I never nightweaned her and I still think that is part of the story. I accepted long ago that she wouldn't sleep well until she was developmentally ready and I assumed that might be until the age of 3 or 4. She still nurses at night, though when she is off dairy, she doesn't typically nurse until around 4 or 5 AM, meaning she is sleeping one heckuva long stretch prior to that!

She's had chronic nighttime congestion which we initially linked to dust mites. We found that after we first washed our sheets, her breathing improved. We started washing sheets more often and we even went so far as to remove the carpet in our room a few months ago. When that final step didn't show us the improvement we were looking for, I was disappointed and a bit baffled. Fast forward a bit, DD starts to complain about wax in her ears (roughly 6 weeks ago). Mind you, this is a child who has only had one ear infection (in one ear) in her life, which we treated with breastmilk. I started doing some reading on fluid in the ears and found that chronic effusion is linked to dairy allergy. Though fluid in her ears has not been a chronic problem for her, I figured I'd try eliminating dairy thinking it couldn't hurt.

The rest of the story, I guess you know from my post.

Here is what I think now. I think my DD has a dairy sensitivity. I think I probably do better without it, too. I think, actually, that most/many people do not tolerate dairy well and would find just that if they elminated it completely from their diets. However, eliminating dairy is difficult to do and in the absence of truly obvious and irritating symptoms, it takes a lot of willpower as well. That is the reason I think so many of us cling to our dairy.

Oh dear, I'm afraid I'm sounding/feeling a bit more defensive than I intended! I appreciate the insight. I truly do!
post #8 of 11
No, you don't sound defensive at all. More info is very helpful.

I know how hard it can be giving up a certain favorite food. Chronic wakefullness is a sign of dairy insensitivity. Most APed bfed kids start sleeping though the night at age 2 1/2.

http://www.kellymom.com/babyconcerns...ity.html#signs
post #9 of 11
justlooking through threads, and i had a couple questions. DS is nearly 5 mo old, and hes been congested every night since birth (minus a couple of weeks right before he got a nasty cold around 2 mo) it seems to have gotten worse with the allergy season (i have seasonal allergies) so i had assumed that was the problem... but ive started a dairy-free diet after reading the congestion-dairy link. Did i figure this out too late? im not a big milk person (although i, too, was forced to drink it as a child) but i am big on cheese and butter. Will he ever be able to tolerate it?

and, you mentioned ear wax... hes always got an earful of junk, i scrape it out with my nail at least once a day... this, i figured was inherited from his father because hes always got waxy ears, is this related? i suppose i will find out after its out of both our systems...
post #10 of 11
We didn't find out dd2 was intolerant to dairy till she was 3.5. She was breastfed till she was 2. She fought major constipation from the time she was 10 months old till the time we removed dairy from her diet. She would have stomachaches, bedwetting (stopped once dairy was gone), and now has a clogged lymph system. She's also intolerant to wheat and citrus. Her brother gets very congested with dairy. We found out at 4 months old with him. He now can tolerate dairy in small amounts. If he has too much he sleeps terribly, gets a runny nose, and has a chest "gurgle"

I think you need to just get rid of dairy all together and reintroduce it in a few years.
post #11 of 11
Just FYI--any food that affects the immune system is an allergy by definition. So, if a food is connected to autoimmune issues, it is an allergy. Most pediatricians and some "old school" allergists maintain--dangerously--that, in order to be an allergy, there must be an immediate reaction including hives or swelling or other clearly systemic responses. Unfortunately, that train of thought has allowed them to downplay the severity of delayed reactions.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Allergies
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Mom › Women's Health  › Allergies › Congestion from dairy = allergy/intolerance? How to handle?