difficulty introducing solids in 99% ebf 11 mo and pressure from her doc to do so. - Mothering Forums

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Old 08-28-2012, 07:30 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I posted this in LWAB but realized it may be more of a breastfeeding issue.
My instincts also tell me to hold off. It's hard to introduce foods because I always want to get her at a baseline with her itching and redness so that I can see a reaction if it happens. She has very little interest in food, even if it is on my plate, and if she did I'd wanna be careful what she would be grabbing. Maybe I'll have a meal of safe foods she can try grabbing at if she wants.
Anyways, I spoke to her doc today and she is totally scaring me into feeding her saying she is likely to be anemic because she's about 99% EBF . My dd is small for her age, I think she's 16lbs -16.5lbs at 11 mos. then again, I'm 4'11" and about 90lbs. Dh was a skinny kid, too.
So, doc recommends her to do an iron blood test, which I am ok with. Good info to know, right? But then again, I've gotta wonder, if EBF babies past 6 mos are "likely to be anemic" than where are they getting the average iron level normals from. Did that make sense? Also, what did we do as humans in caveman days when iron fortified cereals weren't around?
Any suggestions on what to say to the dr? She is so convinced that babies cannot be EBF past 6 mos because that's what the medical texts say. Almost wanna ask her for a copy of her med book to see if it's some archaic edition. Furthermore, she's a lactation consultant, so I was so surprised to hear this! Ugh...
Sorry for the rant, but now I just feel a little lost and torn because of what I think may be an "old school" thinking about breastfeeding.

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Old 08-28-2012, 07:35 PM
 
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I go by the thought process of "under one just for fun." After that, I do think it's important to start introducing solids as a form of nutrition. But if you fear allergies, Id probably go with my gut too.


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Old 08-29-2012, 11:02 AM
 
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So you're going to do the blood test right?  If she's anemic, give her an iron supplement.  I know that a couple of them come in drops and are ok for babies. You can still be cautious about introducing foods and not worry about anemia.

 

My older DD wasn't real intrested in solid foods until about 15 or 16 months.  She would eat a tiny bit of things she liked (mostly baked sweet potato fries and fruit, occasionally some chicken), but flatly refused to be spoon fed anything. 


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Old 08-31-2012, 05:52 AM
 
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 Also, what did we do as humans in caveman days when iron fortified cereals weren't around?

Eat meat, goes the theory! Apparently, we'd all just have hunks of cooked meat after a hunt, and babies around your child's age would be grabbing little bits and eating them.

 

My son, 8 months, started grabbing at food and putting it in his mouth at 4 months. He still eats very little, but has gotten better at aiming at his mouth, chewing, and eating. He's not really into spoon feeding, either, although we do try to do that once a day. When he eats chunks of our dinner meat, I think that we're doing it the "caveman" way.

 

Your daughter is probably fine. If you want, you could try giving her some finger foods so she can practice eating them. If she's got some skin issues, then give her some safer foods and introduce them slowly.

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Old 09-10-2012, 12:25 AM
 
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I delayed solids until about 9 months and am still breastfeeding way more than would be expected with my 17-month-old, who doesn't have strong appetite for or digestion of solid foods. I just make sure that what I do give her really counts in terms of nutrients lacking in breast milk as well as calories. If anemia turns out to be an issue, animal sources of iron are absorbed much better than vegetable sources or the rust-like stuff in most supplements and fortified foods. We used soft boiled organic egg yolk with a tiny pinch of Celtic sea salt, ground beef, and pureed chicken soup. My daughter wouldn't have any of it, but small bits of grated organic liver (mixed with other food) can work wonders. My daughter has a much easier time digesting animal foods than vegetables or grains. I feel better knowing that her immature digestive system doesn't have to do any complicated chemical conversions to be able to use the nutrients--they are in immediately available form. Just make sure animal products are very high quality to avoid toxins that might bother kids with sensitive systems. Also, by getting pastured/grass-fed products, you will avoid traces of soy and corn which are used as feed in factory farming. I learned a lot from the book Super Nutrition for Babies, which addresses the needs of kids with allergies, eczema, asthma, ect., which so many kids have these days. 


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Old 09-10-2012, 01:36 AM
 
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None of mine were interested in solids before 9 - 15 months, and they were all tiny at one (under 20 lbs for sure). I would keep doing what you are doing and offer finger foods (mine never took puree anything).


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Old 09-12-2012, 07:10 AM
 
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Go with your gut! Especially if you are worried about allergies.  It's probably not a bad idea to get the blood test, but as you were thinking, use it as a guide and not an absolute. 

 

I always wonder when doctors say that "you should really get them to eat more solids", like you aren't offering.  I mean, the only alternative would be force feeding, and that wouldn't be good! Their bodies are telling them to hold off on solids for whatever reason, and I've always thought it wise to listen. 

 

FWIW, when my son was about 6 months old, he wasn't eating solids, despite the fact I was offering them.  After my (fairly mainstream) doctor told me that I needed to make sure my son started eating, I asked if I should be worried about iron levels.  I mentioned that even though my son wasn't swallowing any food, he would suck the juices out of meat (like steak) and then spit it out.  The doc said that if that was the case, then I didn't have to worry about supplementing iron, he was getting enough from the juices.  Fast forward almost a year, and my son STILL wasn't eating!  At least not on a regular basis. (We have some food intolerances, and he quite obviously still had some tummy issues, which is why he was spiting out food, even food he liked.  He actually would go through cycles of eating and spitting out food). At this time, my new doctor (who is incredibly laid back about everything) still wasn't worried that DS was still 99% breast fed. 

 

Now my son is 22 months old, and a much better eater.  He still doesn't eat at every meal time, but he has times of the day where he will put back quite a lot of food.  He tends to like sour foods and stews, which is not something I had realized that babies would "like", so it wasn't on my radar to offer them when he was younger.  We eat a GAPS/Paleo style diet, although we are not strict about it.  I would like to be, and we do well most of the time.  My son ALWAYS does much better when we stick to those foods - I would definitely recommend looking into the GAPS diet.  There is a ton of support out there, and a ton of recipe ideas. 

 

For us, my son is happy, healthy, growing, and meeting all milestones, so I don't feel like I have reason to be concerned about his eating habits, even if it can be hard on me at times. 

 

Anyway, in terms of diet for your DC, I would just be paying close attention and follow your instinct.  I would try offering little bits of steak or other red meat  or liver for her to chew on, even if she just spits it out.  And kids "back in the day" didn't need supplementation because they would likely eat dirt, which has (or used to have before soil became depleted!) iron and other trace minerals.

 

Good luck!!


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Old 10-16-2012, 03:40 PM - Thread Starter
 
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great, thanks for all the wonderful responses!

well, DD is now 13 mos old and barely eats. The one time she showed interest in what I was eating (hummus), she broke out on her cheek with a few hives. She does happen to like those baby mumum rice crackers. I don't know how much to offer, though. I also don't know if she'll only want to eat rice-y/crunchy/carb-y things if this is all she is pretty much interested in, so is all she pretty much eats. (KWIM?) I always thought, if she's barely eating, than the food I give her better be nutritious rather than filling her up on grains. (I'd rather fill her up on BM).

 

I also wondered about the teeth thing and thought she'd show more interest when more teeth came in. She has four right now. She is also small. I have to still take her to her WBV, but I think she is somewhere between 17 and 17.5 lbs. She is small. Her blood test at 10 mos showed all normal levels, though iron was on the low side (of normal).

 

Anyways, thats my update. Any thoughts?


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Old 10-16-2012, 06:03 PM
 
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If she is getting hives, then I would definitely think food allergies are an issue, and this is why she is slow to start eating.  You can try putting a little bit of food on the inside of her wrist before bed and seeing if there is a rash in the morning to test for sensitivities without actually needing to make her eat the food.  Since she is obviously having issues with foods, it's likely that her instincts to delay solid foods are to protect her digestive system.  You definitely shouldn't force it.

 

Also, I agree with your assessment that letting her pig out on cookies isn't going to do her much good.  Yeah she is "eating more solids" but she will be filling up on food that isn't giving her nutrients...she may end up loosing weight.  It's so tempting to just let them have food because they are eating it, but you really need to make sure that she is getting nutrient dense foods.  That's not to say that you should necessarily limit her carb intake per se, but there are ways other than cookies to get carbs.  (I know, she doesn't eat other stuff, but just keep offering, at some point her interest will pick up). 

 

As I said before, my DS is 2 next month, and he still doesn't eat 3 square meals per day.  He ate very little leading up to 18 months, and then all of a sudden would have a huge desire to eat at a time where he was previously totally and completely uninterested.  I think that because I avoided the temptation to just let him have the cookie type foods, he has developed a great palate.  It was definitely worth the wait, even though it's hard.  And he definitely goes through phases where he will devour a particular type of food, and then all of a sudden won't go near it.  Kids have great instincts about which foods they need so long as those signals aren't clouded with junk food...then they are probably just craving the addictive substances IN the junk food.  But don't worry if she will only eat carbs for a bit, and then only protein, etc.  My DS went through a phase where he would only eat kale chips....which was seriously weird!

 

So again, don't worry that things are slow going, but definitely watch for food reactions...if she's eating foods that are bothering her tummy, she will be less likely to eat in general. 


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Old 10-17-2012, 07:34 AM
 
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I would offer food. Your BM supply might not be enough for a 13 mo old. Just offer (not spoon feed or force in any way). Hummus is very flavorful, both my dk got rashes from it, why not try fruit, vegetables, even meat, let her have carby food as much as she wants. Carbs is good for her (and for adults too). Rice or bread or corn are the staple food in any culture.

 

I wouldn't wait for her to ask.
 


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Old 10-18-2012, 12:50 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I would offer food. Your BM supply might not be enough for a 13 mo old. Just offer (not spoon feed or force in any way). Hummus is very flavorful, both my dk got rashes from it, why not try fruit, vegetables, even meat, let her have carby food as much as she wants. Carbs is good for her (and for adults too). Rice or bread or corn are the staple food in any culture.

I wouldn't wait for her to ask.

 

Yes, I agree. I do offer "safe" foods, but she has no interest yet. Every day I try to get her to try fruit or steamed veggie or meat, but she turns away or swipes at it. Even I'd I make it seem really tempting like eating safe foods from a plate that is grabbing distance from her.. Haha. Maybe that's only my Opinion on temptation though, obviously, she thinks otherwise. She does want things she can't have, like chips and raisins I.e. choking hazards, so I can give into those.

Question about the carbs. Can you explain the health benefits of carbs? I'm talking more on the grains side, rather than the fruit and veggie carbs. Ever since this allergy thiing came up I've cleaned my diet up a whole lot and most of the info I read is rather negative towards grains, especially when In reference to gut healing and our gut flora. Plus, I figure, prior to grains, our ancestors lived without and did much better health wise than many of us today, so I'd like to get your input if you don't mind and have got a moment.

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Old 10-18-2012, 05:16 AM
 
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Ah, ok, if she has no interest then I wouldn't push it.

 

From what I've read (sorry I don't have titles handy right now) the anti-carb trend started with the no-carb diet, Atkins and the like. Our ancestors lived mainly on carbs (that is if you don't go back to the cavemen). Meat was something they would eat on occasion. I come from a traditional culture in Eastern Europe where people always put cornbread or bread on the table.

Health departments recommend grains should be preponderant in our diets.
 

You say she doesn't like meat; you could try bread and butter. It's soft enough that she won't have any trouble chewing and butter could give her the fat she needs. Veggies and fruit have mostly no fat at all and are very low in calories.

 

Again, I would offer but not force or insist. She knows best how much to eat and how to grow :)


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Old 10-18-2012, 06:16 AM
 
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Yes, I agree. I do offer "safe" foods, but she has no interest yet. Every day I try to get her to try fruit or steamed veggie or meat, but she turns away or swipes at it. Even I'd I make it seem really tempting like eating safe foods from a plate that is grabbing distance from her.. Haha. Maybe that's only my Opinion on temptation though, obviously, she thinks otherwise. She does want things she can't have, like chips and raisins I.e. choking hazards, so I can give into those.
Question about the carbs. Can you explain the health benefits of carbs? I'm talking more on the grains side, rather than the fruit and veggie carbs. Ever since this allergy thiing came up I've cleaned my diet up a whole lot and most of the info I read is rather negative towards grains, especially when In reference to gut healing and our gut flora. Plus, I figure, prior to grains, our ancestors lived without and did much better health wise than many of us today, so I'd like to get your input if you don't mind and have got a moment.


I am with you in terms of grains...for people who can tolerate them, sure, indulge! but many people can't...and babies don't get the amylase's to digest grains until after 2.  Also, depending on where you live, grains can be treated with some pretty horrific pesticides and antifungals, not to mention the issues with the arsenic irked.gif (which i haven't really delved into yet). 

 

Carbs, though, are really important in terms of the brain and glucose, so I do think it makes sense that one and two year olds crave carbs. With my son, he was still EBF at one.  But when he did periodically naw on food, it was generally well seasoned - one of he first meals he devoured was sauerbraten (aged pot roast) and red cabbage with potatoes.  He also likes a lot of sour foods - real dill pickles and sauerkraut.  The other thing is, especially now that he is older, he will eat for other people much more readily than he will eat from me...he would rather nurse if I am around.  The other thing that helps his appetite is being around a group of people who are eating, especially if there are other kids.  He never liked fruit...he just isn't really a fan of the sweet.  He only recently started eating vegetables (aside from kale chips).  He loved meat, and I have been letting him have nuts for a while.  He loves to dip food, so I would make some guacamole (which he would eat sometimes and other times not) and mix in whatever things I could, and give him zucchini "chips".  He would scoop he guac, but wasn't really able to eat the zucchini.  The other thing he will like sometimes is pudding or ice cream made with coconut cream; I would spread that over nutbutter with dried fruit, and it was like a yummy treat. 

 

In terms of starchy veggies, I do allow them a bit, just because of what I said about the brain and glucose, but I always serve it with some fermented foods so that his flora stays intact.  We still have some issues though.  It's really hard trying to provide them with nutrients they need while balancing what you think is going on in the gut.  I feel as though they kind of *know* what they need...my son will even ask for the fermented cod liver oil occasionally.  Other times he flat out refuses it.  I don't push it; I feel like I need to honor his instincts a bit. 
 

There is a study out there done on orphaned babies where they were allowed to choose from a variety of healthy foods rather than be fed...and almost 100% of the time they chose foods that their bodies were deficient in...they would typically eat a lot of one thing or another for a few days, then shift focus to something else.  Some days they ate a lot, other days not much at all.  We have to remember that babies don't have all of the media telling them what they "should" be eating at a particular age, they are still just working off of instinct...and I think it wise to listen.  I also think that while there are plenty of babies that start eating food like crazy at 5 or 6 months old, there are just as many who "wait" until much older.  I think it's the practice of returning to a more traditional way of breastfeeding, we are seeing more and more kids wait to eat.  BM is so much more nutrient dense than any other "meal" that would fit into their tiny bellies.  I would definitely recommend looking at the Mommypotomus website.  I bought er E book and found i really helpful....I will definitely stick to those ideals with baby #2.


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Old 10-18-2012, 06:34 AM
 
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I am with you in terms of grains...for people who can tolerate them, sure, indulge! but many people can't...and babies don't get the amylase's to digest grains until after 2. 

Actually, that's not true. Amylase is present in levels compared to adult's between 2 and 8 months.

 

http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/39/4/584.full.pdf

http://www.springerlink.com/content/q013732151177737/


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Old 10-18-2012, 09:40 AM
 
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I did not introduce solids to my 12lbs 4oz baby boy at birth, until he was a year of age.  He was EBF prior to. 


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Old 10-18-2012, 10:01 AM
 
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I would offer food. Your BM supply might not be enough for a 13 mo old. Just offer (not spoon feed or force in any way). Hummus is very flavorful, both my dk got rashes from it, why not try fruit, vegetables, even meat, let her have carby food as much as she wants. Carbs is good for her (and for adults too). Rice or bread or corn are the staple food in any culture.

 

I wouldn't wait for her to ask.
 

 

OP, I am having the same issues with my 10 month old and food allergies except he is VERY interested in food and wants to eat everything. Its very frustrating. We're eliminating and holding off on most things but my 2 year old is constantly trying to slip him food. He was EBF till 8 months and since we started solids (then cut them off and tried to reintroduce later) it's been impossible to get him to baseline. ANYWAYS, I just wanted to caution you that as far as food allergies so gluten (bread) and corn are 2 of the 4 most reactive foods so I would def finitely not offer those if you're already having problems. The first 4 foods that are usually cut out are gluten, dairy, corn, and soy. The allergy forum has lots of helpful info! I would focus on protein, fat, and calcium rich foods as opposed to carbs. Full fat reek yogurt, veggies or eggs cooked in coconut oil if she tolerates those things. DS2 is dairy and egg reactive:(.

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Old 10-19-2012, 01:52 PM
 
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Actually, that's not true. Amylase is present in levels compared to adult's between 2 and 8 months.

 

http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/39/4/584.full.pdf

http://www.springerlink.com/content/q013732151177737/


So, I was inaccurate; some professionals don't recommend introduction of grains, especially wheat until 2 or later.  Amylase itself is present in saliva from pretty early on, but pancreatic amylase is a major component in digesting grains.  I couldn't read the full text of the second link, but from what I could read, they don't distinguish between the different types of amylase when making the statement that amylase levels become comparable to adult levels, and in fact go on to describe that pancreatic enzymes are very low in infancy and increase as the infants age.  From what I could see, they did not mention the age at which those levels became "normal". 

 

Here is a paper that compares pancreatic amylase in the context of diagnosing pancreatic dysfunction. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6208482).  In it they state that:

 

"Serum isoamylase levels were age dependent during the first 16 months of life."

 

Either way, grains contain numerous components that are difficult to digest in general, and would be especially problematic in children whose systems are burdened with allergies and/or gut issues.

 

To OP, if you do try to eliminate grains, it is a rather huge undertaking, but it sort of forces you to eliminate all processed foods, which is also beneficial.  It shouldn't take too long to notice an improvement.  Once that happens you can try reintroducing some grains, but try soaking or spouting them first.  That should take care of the parts that are more difficult to digest, and you will be able to see more clearly if there is an issue with a grain, or if your DD's system is just overloaded.  There is a similar line of thought in terms of using raw dairy (since the enzymes that assist in digestion are still present) in place of commercial dairy.  FWIW, neither of those things worked for us, however I feel better than I ever have.

 

Figuring this stuff out is not easy...just try to follow your DD's lead and listen to your instincts.  And there is a lot of support in the Allergies forum, even if you just search through old threads. 


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