About my son - lots of questions mostly about gluten (long) - Mothering Forums

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Old 06-30-2010, 02:58 AM - Thread Starter
 
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OK this is going to be a bit all over the place, sorry in advance...

This is about my middle son, who just turned 4. We've been doing a bunch of testing through the ped we just got a referral to. We recently started working with a naturopath/homeopath, and we have a great homeopathic remedy that has been helping him with some of his issues, but she is quite concerned about an allergy and thinks we need to pursue that avenue as well.

Here are his symptoms/issues:
*overall developmental delay - assessment scored him about a year behind on most things (so, for example, he's not out of diapers/pull-ups yet)
*speech delay - was very delayed - no speech until 27 months - then had a pretty significant articulation disorder - this has been vastly improved with speech therapy and homeopathy and he is just about within the normal range now - mostly still working on grammar stuff
*huge bags under his eyes, all the time... his eyes just look off - allergy-like (does not seem to fluctuate with the amount of sleep he gets)
*often has a runny nose, but not a cold
*ped felt he had a lot of allergy signs on the physical exam
*very slow healing of skin scratches/cuts
*heavy wetter at night
*used to throw up easily, but this has improved recently
*very prone to hyperactivity - can be very extreme esp. after eating (I have not been able to correlate this to anything though), including hysterical laughter over nothing, spitting, licking windows, crashing into walls on purpose, trying to spray pee all over the room
*very whiny/tantrumy
*classic signs of sensory-seeking SPD
*he has a lot of signs of being on the autism spectrum, but overall he is not

OK I just have to say that he is really a sweetie and I don't want to sound like I am complaining But I think he needs some help! He very rarely gets *sick* though, never had an ear infection, etc.

We saw the ped for the first time a couple of weeks ago. She was immediately concerned about allergy stuff for him.

This is the testing done so far:

Hematology panel - normal
TSH - normal
Ferritin - low (7, normal is at least 12)
Iron & transferrin saturation - normal
IgA level - normal
IgE level - normal
Anti-TTG - normal
RAST: kid food & gluten - normal
Fragile X - not back yet
Lead level - not back yet

Allergen IgE requests:
Mite mix (House dust, D. pteronyssinus, cockroach, D. farinae) - negative
Children's food (egg white, milk, wheat, peanut, soybean) - negative
Gluten - negative
Orange - negative
Mould mix (P. notatum, C. herbarum, A. fumigatus, C. albicans, A. tenius, H. halodes) - negative

So, the only issue really identified so far is the low ferritin, which is not surprising given how picky he is and the fact that he refuses most supplements. I am going to try Floradix again, maybe we can sneak it into something else. Our naturopath is going to call me back with some other recommendations. I'm sure the ped will recommend regular iron pills/supplements, but I seem to remember those are not very well absorbed...

I got the above results from the naturopath, who called me today. We have a followup appointment with the ped next Thursday, and she will go over the results then too.

So... the ped and our naturopath are both very concerned about gluten. He tested fine, but I understand that the test is not very reliable.

*I need to backtrack a bit here: my oldest son (age 6) was also tested for celiac last year, and tested negative - he did not have the other allergy tests done though. He is mildly on the autism spectrum, but with different symptoms - aggression is the main thing we have really struggled with with him, he has lots of other signs but they are easier to deal with.

*Also, DH probably has some degree of gluten sensitivity/intolerance (I am not really sure which, or even what the difference is).

Anyway, we are considering a gluten-free trial. And I am totally freaked out at the prospect

Here are our other dietary restrictions:
*Me: vegetarian (lacto-ovo, but I do eat seafood too), no other issues
*DH: allergic to lentils and chickpeas, doesn't like many other beans, questionable issues with gluten (mild though), eats meat but not at home (I don't ban it, I just don't cook it myself, and he doesn't care enough to make it himself)
*DS1: mild lactose intolerance - can have yogurt, cheese, etc, but not milk. Otherwise not too picky for a kid I guess. Doesn't like meat (but we don't make it at home anyway)
*DS3 (17 months): not picky at all
*DS2: picky picky picky. He mostly just wants carbs (wheat-based), fruit, yogurt, eggs... he also eats some cheese, peanut butter, etc. Likes seafood, but we don't buy it that often due to cost. Very reluctant to eat veggies, beans, healthier grains, potatoes etc. Will occasionally eat a little bit of meat eg. at a family dinner.
*both older kids eat a TON. Like 2-3 snacks in the morning, 3-4 snacks in the afternoon, a bedtime snack, plus regular meals. So I need to have quite a few different snacks that will work for them, so they aren't eating the same thing all the time. (and no, they are not the slightest bit overweight... just high metabolism I guess. I'm the same way). I also need a variety of easy to grab snacks to keep in the stroller/backpack since we are out and about a lot.

Budget-wise, we are okay with what we eat now, but I don't see any way we can start substituting GF products... they are VERY expensive here (eg. $6 for a small package of crackers that would be gone in a day)

Time-wise, I am VERY limited. The 3 kids need me pretty much every minute of the day (partly due to their special needs and partly because the older 2 are just very high-needs in general), so I don't get any housework/real cooking done at all unless DH is home. He gets home, we have dinner around 7, then it's pretty much a rush to get kids to bed etc. As soon as they are in bed I have to do my schoolwork, plus household stuff - I am taking a course that requires 20 hours/week, so 3 hours/day - and that is every day, unless I manage to work ahead a little bit (rare). So, I am working generally 10 pm - 1 am 7 days a week. So I have NO time to make my own special breads, crackers, etc, so PLEASE do not suggest that.

So... I have no idea how to pull this off when I can't afford the packaged substitutes and don't have time to make my own. I need our food to be very quick to prepare, and easy to buy at a regular grocery store.

Anyway, I am not even sure what to ask really... I guess it comes down to:
1. Based on what I have written, would you do a GF trial?
2. Is that even doable for us?
3. Should I ask the ped for a referral to an allergist? (doesn't sound like it - this is probably more of a sensitivity I guess?) The only issue with that is that if we want to do any more allergy testing we have to either get a referral to an allergist or wait a year, because GPs and peds are only allowed to order 5 allergy tests per year per person (which we just had), otherwise the patient has to pay for them and they are very expensive. If an allergist orders them it is covered. I am not sure if it's even worth pursuing though?
4. Any recommendations for EASY websites/books as a good starting place? I saw the "Where to Start? Help 101" thread here, and I will try to read through it, but even that seemed overwhelming right now.

I think that is it... sorry for the novel
I will answer any questions.

We are still waiting on the fragile X and may do more genetic testing too. The ped is concerned about something affecting all of the kids (due to the older 2 having SNs and my youngest isn't talking at all yet, but he seems to be working on it at least). I don't know if a genetic condition would explain the allergy-type symptoms though?

Thank you SO MUCH if you have made it this far, lol.
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Old 06-30-2010, 11:17 AM
 
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Personally I'd pull gluten and dairy with those symptoms. And keep a food journal (if everyone eats the same thing, it would make things easier for a journal.

You don't "have" to substitute gluten-free pre-made things for formerly gluten things. You can just eliminate them. And make different foods. I do a lot of crockpot meals because it doesn't take long to throw the things together. A lot of veggie dishes are quick to prepare (roasted veggies, steamed veggies, sauteed veggies). We have a rice cooker - measure it out, plug it in. For a year and a half, my DS couldn't have rice, so there was no safe pasta for him. He had his spaghetti sauce over steamed cauliflower. We found new ways to do things. Later, after you get the hang of it, you could do things like make bread on a weekend and freeze it. We also make a double batch of things like buckwheat waffles when we have extra time then freeze them for a quick re-heat in the toaster.

Kathy, mother of 3, wife of 1. My new recipe blog: www.kathysrecipebox.wordpress.com (no longer searchable by allergen, but at least it doesn't have a virus!)
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Old 06-30-2010, 02:14 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Personally I'd pull gluten and dairy with those symptoms. And keep a food journal (if everyone eats the same thing, it would make things easier for a journal.

You don't "have" to substitute gluten-free pre-made things for formerly gluten things. You can just eliminate them. And make different foods. I do a lot of crockpot meals because it doesn't take long to throw the things together. A lot of veggie dishes are quick to prepare (roasted veggies, steamed veggies, sauteed veggies). We have a rice cooker - measure it out, plug it in. For a year and a half, my DS couldn't have rice, so there was no safe pasta for him. He had his spaghetti sauce over steamed cauliflower. We found new ways to do things. Later, after you get the hang of it, you could do things like make bread on a weekend and freeze it. We also make a double batch of things like buckwheat waffles when we have extra time then freeze them for a quick re-heat in the toaster.
Can I ask your reasons for recommending pulling dairy as well? (not trying to argue, just curious). I feel like pulling gluten would be very difficult, and pulling dairy too would be darn near impossible... that is basically all he eats! Those other things you mentioned sound like good ideas, but DS2 doesn't eat any of those things (plus what do you do for protein if beans are out?). DS1 would be easier, because he does eat many of those things (no tomato sauce though! )

Maybe I just need to see more examples of actual meals. Do you have any favourite sources? For example, when you say your DS had tomato sauce on cauliflower, what else did he eat it with?
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Old 06-30-2010, 03:02 PM
 
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Dairy and gluten are the two most common food intolerances (dairy first, gluten second). Bedwetting is common with dairy. Also, for those on the spectrum, or may be on the spectrum, both dairy and gluten act as opiates. The kids crave them, and act out as it leaves their system. Both of them are very habit forming.

You said one of the kids couldn't do two types of beans, so I wasn't throwing out bean recipes, because I figured it would be easier to make meals that the whole family could enjoy. We make things like zucchini fritters made with chicpea flour too, but I just wasn't suggesting things like that.

We're not vegetarians, so when I make spaghetti sauce, it also has meat in it (ground beef or italian sausage), and then that goes over the steamed cauliflower, so it can be a whole meal (though sometimes I serve it with fruit). I've made an enchilada casserole, making sorghum tortillas, and layering it with taco-seasoned meat (mixed with nutritional yeast), refried beans, black olives, and salsa. I usually serve a little fruit plate or a raw veggie platter either while they're waiting for dinner or with dinner, and make them eat their age in whatever is safe for them (my kids have lots of food intolerances). For instance, I'd put out celery sticks, carrot sticks, and cucumber slices. DS, who is 10 yo, could eat 3 celeries and 7 cucumbers, since he can't have carrots. I've been making dosa (Indian flatbread) and wrapping it around either roasted potatoes or sauteed onions, peppers, and mushrooms for breakfast or lunch. Almost all of our meals have meat in them because I try not to rely too heavily on carbs since we're limited on which ones we can have, and because the substitutions are expensive.

My kids are a little older. And not as high needs when they're off their bad foods (DS was a whiny, tantrumy, needy kid before we adjusted his diet). So I have time to make things like pizza (using a buckwheat crust and pine nut ricotta, and some caramelized veggies). You can do stir-fry over rice. That's always a quick meal. Or fried rice. Also, when you take things out of the diet that are addictive, you'll find that their palate might open up a little more, and they'll be more open to new foods, if the foods aren't right there (everyone was on the diet for a while; DD1 and DH eat regular food for some of their meals now).

I have a recipe blog. We're dairy, corn, gluten, soy free. Two years so far.

Kathy, mother of 3, wife of 1. My new recipe blog: www.kathysrecipebox.wordpress.com (no longer searchable by allergen, but at least it doesn't have a virus!)
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Old 06-30-2010, 05:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Dairy and gluten are the two most common food intolerances (dairy first, gluten second). Bedwetting is common with dairy. Also, for those on the spectrum, or may be on the spectrum, both dairy and gluten act as opiates. The kids crave them, and act out as it leaves their system. Both of them are very habit forming.

You said one of the kids couldn't do two types of beans, so I wasn't throwing out bean recipes, because I figured it would be easier to make meals that the whole family could enjoy. We make things like zucchini fritters made with chicpea flour too, but I just wasn't suggesting things like that.

We're not vegetarians, so when I make spaghetti sauce, it also has meat in it (ground beef or italian sausage), and then that goes over the steamed cauliflower, so it can be a whole meal (though sometimes I serve it with fruit). I've made an enchilada casserole, making sorghum tortillas, and layering it with taco-seasoned meat (mixed with nutritional yeast), refried beans, black olives, and salsa. I usually serve a little fruit plate or a raw veggie platter either while they're waiting for dinner or with dinner, and make them eat their age in whatever is safe for them (my kids have lots of food intolerances). For instance, I'd put out celery sticks, carrot sticks, and cucumber slices. DS, who is 10 yo, could eat 3 celeries and 7 cucumbers, since he can't have carrots. I've been making dosa (Indian flatbread) and wrapping it around either roasted potatoes or sauteed onions, peppers, and mushrooms for breakfast or lunch. Almost all of our meals have meat in them because I try not to rely too heavily on carbs since we're limited on which ones we can have, and because the substitutions are expensive.

My kids are a little older. And not as high needs when they're off their bad foods (DS was a whiny, tantrumy, needy kid before we adjusted his diet). So I have time to make things like pizza (using a buckwheat crust and pine nut ricotta, and some caramelized veggies). You can do stir-fry over rice. That's always a quick meal. Or fried rice. Also, when you take things out of the diet that are addictive, you'll find that their palate might open up a little more, and they'll be more open to new foods, if the foods aren't right there (everyone was on the diet for a while; DD1 and DH eat regular food for some of their meals now).

I have a recipe blog. We're dairy, corn, gluten, soy free. Two years so far.
OK, thanks. I am familiar with the whole opiate-like thing with ASDs, I was just wondering if there was another reason based on what I wrote.

Re: beans - yup, DH can't have chickpeas or lentils, but he can eat kidney beans and black beans. He doesn't like other types of beans. The 2 older boys don't really like any type of beans... DS1 eats hummus, and sometimes black beans if they are hidden. DS2 won't touch them. DS3 eats just about anything

You mentioned most of your meals have meat in them - that is what I was afraid of Almost everything I could find on the internet last night (although I admittedly did not spend long on it) featured meat. So I am going to have do some thinking on how to get around that.

You mentioned your kids got easier to deal with once they were off the foods - that sounds great! How long did it take to see improvement? I just don't know how to handle it in the meantime It is very, very difficult to cook. eg. stirfry you mentioned - I love stirfry! But that is something we would have on the weekend, when DH is home to help. It's not a "quick" meal IMO. At least not with my kids, lol. "Quick" here is scrambled eggs and toast, and even that results in all h*ll breaking loose while I make it. Seriously.

Argh. I am not trying to sound all negative, honest. Partly I am just really burned out right now and this just sounds impossible. I'm sure it's not really the case though. You know how it just feels that way sometimes?

Thank you for your help.
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Old 06-30-2010, 09:30 PM
 
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I said dairy because it's the most common, and because of the bedwetting, and the runny nose.

There are other vegetarians who have done the eliminations. It's harder, sure, and some of them started eating local and/or grassfed (ethically raised, etc.) meat when there were a lot of restrictions, or added fish to their diet, or something they didn't have as much of an issue with.

When I first got the list of the foods my kids were intolerant to, I felt the same way... this is impossible... especially because the kids had a lot of opposite intolerances (DS can't have chicken, DD2 can't have beef, DS can't have cane sugar, DD2 can't have beet sugar or honey, DS couldn't have rice or potato, etc.). But I had the list of foods we COULD eat, and I started cooking. Two years later, I'm still cooking. A lot. I make bread maybe once a month. Same with tortillas.

For DS, he had a 3 day withdrawal from gluten (begging for crumbs), by the 4th day, I saw a marked difference in behavior. DS always wanted to be tucked in 3-4 times, and took an hour or two to fall asleep. By the end of that first week, I was kissing him goodnight, and he was asleep within 5-10 minutes. It was amazing. He stopped snoring/mouth breathing at night too. And his seasonal allergies got a lot better.

If you do eggs, that's a good protein. And quick. We used to do poached eggs on pasta with diced tomatoes. That's a good dinner. Hard boiled eggs for a snack. We scramble eggs in coconut oil - it makes them taste buttery. We still do rice pasta - with olive oil, mushrooms, onions, black olives all sauteed. Or with garlic, crushed red pepper, parsley, and olive oil. Did I already say enchiladas using corn tortillas? (though be careful since corn and soy also have some of those opiate qualities)

You could do beanless chili on rice. I make that in big batches so I can freeze some for days I need something quick.

Mmm... black bean soup. 3 bean salad.

Kathy, mother of 3, wife of 1. My new recipe blog: www.kathysrecipebox.wordpress.com (no longer searchable by allergen, but at least it doesn't have a virus!)
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Old 07-01-2010, 12:39 AM
 
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Can I ask your reasons for recommending pulling dairy as well? (not trying to argue, just curious).
huge bags under his eyes all the time, runny nose, and bedwetting are big signs of dairy intolerance/allergy. Actually, pretty much everything you wrote sounds like it's related, at least in part, to food. Of course, it could be anything, but dairy and gluten are the two biggies.

Tell us what you guys eat now in a day, when you're home alone with the kids and can't cook, and maybe we can help you come up with some alternatives.

Since you are limited in tests, why don't you have your DH go to his doctor and get tested for celiac and gluten intolerance, it would at least give you a clue.
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Old 07-01-2010, 02:44 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I said dairy because it's the most common, and because of the bedwetting, and the runny nose.

There are other vegetarians who have done the eliminations. It's harder, sure, and some of them started eating local and/or grassfed (ethically raised, etc.) meat when there were a lot of restrictions, or added fish to their diet, or something they didn't have as much of an issue with.

When I first got the list of the foods my kids were intolerant to, I felt the same way... this is impossible... especially because the kids had a lot of opposite intolerances (DS can't have chicken, DD2 can't have beef, DS can't have cane sugar, DD2 can't have beet sugar or honey, DS couldn't have rice or potato, etc.). But I had the list of foods we COULD eat, and I started cooking. Two years later, I'm still cooking. A lot. I make bread maybe once a month. Same with tortillas.

For DS, he had a 3 day withdrawal from gluten (begging for crumbs), by the 4th day, I saw a marked difference in behavior. DS always wanted to be tucked in 3-4 times, and took an hour or two to fall asleep. By the end of that first week, I was kissing him goodnight, and he was asleep within 5-10 minutes. It was amazing. He stopped snoring/mouth breathing at night too. And his seasonal allergies got a lot better.

If you do eggs, that's a good protein. And quick. We used to do poached eggs on pasta with diced tomatoes. That's a good dinner. Hard boiled eggs for a snack. We scramble eggs in coconut oil - it makes them taste buttery. We still do rice pasta - with olive oil, mushrooms, onions, black olives all sauteed. Or with garlic, crushed red pepper, parsley, and olive oil. Did I already say enchiladas using corn tortillas? (though be careful since corn and soy also have some of those opiate qualities)

You could do beanless chili on rice. I make that in big batches so I can freeze some for days I need something quick.

Mmm... black bean soup. 3 bean salad.
Thank you, that is helpful. And thank you for being patient with my freaking out

You are absolutely right about making a list of what we CAN eat. I will work on that. We are just researching for now, not pulling anything quite yet, so I want to take some time figuring this out.

That is great to hear that you had improvement in only a few days. Our naturopath said the same thing - most of her clients who are going to see an improvement see it quite quickly. I have heard dairy takes longer to be eliminated from the system though. To me it seems like it makes sense to eliminate one at a time (eg. start with gluten and see how that goes, then eliminate dairy to see what change that makes). I don't know if that is how most people go about doing it, but I *think* that's what I would do...

I am definitely open to more seafood Just can't go overboard because it can get quite expensive. But at least we all like it and as far as I know no one is allergic to it!

I'm not comfortable with adding meat.

Can I ask how long it was before you noticed your kids were less picky/more open to eating the "different" foods (eg. how long does the addiction aspect take to improve)?

Hmm... I think there was something else I meant to ask you... will post back if/when I remember
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Old 07-01-2010, 03:09 AM - Thread Starter
 
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huge bags under his eyes all the time, runny nose, and bedwetting are big signs of dairy intolerance/allergy. Actually, pretty much everything you wrote sounds like it's related, at least in part, to food. Of course, it could be anything, but dairy and gluten are the two biggies.
OK, thanks. I didn't know the undereye bags are often connected to dairy. The ped said it was probably an environmental allergy rather than food, but he tested fine for mould and dust etc. I don't think it is seasonal allergies, because he has them all the time. So I think food is the most likely cause.

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Tell us what you guys eat now in a day, when you're home alone with the kids and can't cook, and maybe we can help you come up with some alternatives.
Sure.
Just as some examples:

Breakfast: Both older boys mostly want PB and banana sandwiches (on whole wheat bread) with soymilk. They have that most days. If I have time to make some muffins or banana bread they will have that, yogurt, etc.

Lunch: They like a snacky plate of different fruits (apple slices, grapes, banana slices, plus carrot sticks for DS1), along with a carb and a protein (eg. cheese or hummus on crackers or mini bagels). DS2 doesn't eat hummus, only DS1. They also like grilled cheese sandwiches with a fruit, or macaroni and cheese with a fruit, etc. Sometimes tuna sandwiches. Sometimes eggs and toast.

Snacks: (many many many snacks, lol) Yogurt, fruit, veggies and dip (for DS1, DS2 won't touch them), cheese/hummus/PB and crackers, leftover macaroni, veggie hot dogs , PB and honey on toast, cottage cheese (only DS2, DS1 can't eat it), granola bars, dried fruit,

Bedtime snack is almost always yogurt and green juice (green smoothie-type thing).

Dinner: We do a lot of quick one-pot meals, with some modifications for picky eaters - eg. I will make a big pot of chili and DH, DS3, and I will eat that for about 3 days. I also make a separate pot of noodles. We mix some noodles into our chili, and DS1 and DS2 just eat the noodles with grated cheese on top. I make the chili with 1/2 beans and 1/2 "veggie ground round" (like ground beef - made from soy protein and wheat protein - so I guess that is out).

We also do quite a few soups (DS2 doesn't really like any of them), I make baked spaghetti sometimes when I have time (faster than lasagne! The older boys won't eat it though, sigh, so they usually have plain spaghetti with eggs scrambled on it and/or grated cheese), sometimes stir fry when I have more time... I mostly try to cook things that will make enough for about 3 nights, so I don't have to cook every night. Therefore, we almost never eat meals of several separate dishes eg. a protein, a grain, veggies, etc. since that is more time-consuming and doesn't lend itself so well to easy reheating. I also have a really small kitchen and making multiple dishes is a pain

We do a lot of breakfast for dinner meals: eggs and toast, omlettes, sometimes pancakes or french toast.

We also do some soup and sandwich meals. Baked potatoes with cheese and veggie bacon (DS2 won't eat potatoes though, but the rest of us like them). And take-out pizza 1-2 times a month

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Since you are limited in tests, why don't you have your DH go to his doctor and get tested for celiac and gluten intolerance, it would at least give you a clue.
I'm not sure if it got buried in my crazy long post, but DS1 and DS2 have both been tested for celiac and tested negative. (I know that can be unreliable though). DS2 also tested negative for wheat/gluten allergy. DH had allergy testing several years ago and came up positive for a HUGE list of foods. We tried to eliminate them but it was nuts. He was allergic to every grain except buckwheat, quinoa, and millet. We both hate buckwheat and millet, and, well, you can only eat so much quinoa. I don't think he was tested specifically for celiac but I doubt he has it, based on what we have read. I think it is more of a sensitivity. He was tested because he had a very persistent skin condition on his hands, and it was thought that an elimination diet might help. He did the diet for a month but had no change in his skin condition. He has mild GI issues on and off, which did improve slightly but not dramatically. They are not bad to begin with though, and he felt like it was not worth the inconvenience of avoiding those foods in order to get such a small benefit. At that point (after a month of avoiding them), DS1 was born, and the elimination diet went straight out the window... He did eventually get the skin condition cleared up with homeopathy

Hope that answers your questions okay...
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Old 07-03-2010, 04:00 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Tell us what you guys eat now in a day, when you're home alone with the kids and can't cook, and maybe we can help you come up with some alternatives.
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Old 07-03-2010, 09:41 PM
 
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Breakfast: Both older boys mostly want PB and banana sandwiches (on whole wheat bread) with soymilk. They have that most days. If I have time to make some muffins or banana bread they will have that, yogurt, etc.
You can do peanut butter and banana sandwiches on rice cakes. And personally I'd switch to almond, hemp, or rice milk before I'd give boys soymilk with all the plant estrogens. You could still make a gluten free banana bread or muffins. I make coconut milk yogurt in my yogurt maker.

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Lunch: They like a snacky plate of different fruits (apple slices, grapes, banana slices, plus carrot sticks for DS1), along with a carb and a protein (eg. cheese or hummus on crackers or mini bagels). DS2 doesn't eat hummus, only DS1. They also like grilled cheese sandwiches with a fruit, or macaroni and cheese with a fruit, etc. Sometimes tuna sandwiches. Sometimes eggs and toast.
carb could be rice crackers or rice cakes or rice. You could do corn chips and salsa, or corn chips with hummus. Or corn tortillas with hummus. You could make tuna salad, spread on a rice cake, or eat with crackers. You can make noodles and do a simple marinara sauce. Or even ketchup (my kids went through that phase for a while).

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Snacks: (many many many snacks, lol) Yogurt, fruit, veggies and dip (for DS1, DS2 won't touch them), cheese/hummus/PB and crackers, leftover macaroni, veggie hot dogs , PB and honey on toast, cottage cheese (only DS2, DS1 can't eat it), granola bars, dried fruit,
Bedtime snack is almost always yogurt and green juice (green smoothie-type thing).
coconut milk yogurt, veggies and dip (could be Italian type dressing, hummus, guacamole, salsa, or dip made out of coconut milk yogurt), rice crackers with peanut butter, we do peanut butter and honey on rice cakes (that's our travel meal), there's probably safe granola bars out there, dried fruit, and you can still make green smoothies.

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Dinner: We do a lot of quick one-pot meals, with some modifications for picky eaters - eg. I will make a big pot of chili and DH, DS3, and I will eat that for about 3 days. I also make a separate pot of noodles. We mix some noodles into our chili, and DS1 and DS2 just eat the noodles with grated cheese on top. I make the chili with 1/2 beans and 1/2 "veggie ground round" (like ground beef - made from soy protein and wheat protein - so I guess that is out).
You can still make chili. We serve ours over rice. Some people make cornbread with theirs. The beans give that a lot of protein anyway.

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We also do quite a few soups (DS2 doesn't really like any of them), I make baked spaghetti sometimes when I have time (faster than lasagne! The older boys won't eat it though, sigh, so they usually have plain spaghetti with eggs scrambled on it and/or grated cheese), sometimes stir fry when I have more time... I mostly try to cook things that will make enough for about 3 nights, so I don't have to cook every night. Therefore, we almost never eat meals of several separate dishes eg. a protein, a grain, veggies, etc. since that is more time-consuming and doesn't lend itself so well to easy reheating. I also have a really small kitchen and making multiple dishes is a pain
Tinkyada rice pasta with eggs scrambled on it. You could add a little nutritional yeast for that "cheesy" taste.

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We do a lot of breakfast for dinner meals: eggs and toast, omlettes, sometimes pancakes or french toast.
You can still do omelettes with no dairy. We make all sorts of fillings for ours...saute mushrooms, onions, broccoli, spinach, etc. We just beat the eggs. We make buckwheat pancakes/waffles. I make gluten free popovers that are absolutely addictive.

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We also do some soup and sandwich meals. Baked potatoes with cheese and veggie bacon (DS2 won't eat potatoes though, but the rest of us like them). And take-out pizza 1-2 times a month
You can still do soups... we've done black bean soup, butternut squash soup, veggie soup. And you can still do baked potatoes, but change the toppings: meatless chili, broccoli, coconut milk yogurt as sour cream

Kathy, mother of 3, wife of 1. My new recipe blog: www.kathysrecipebox.wordpress.com (no longer searchable by allergen, but at least it doesn't have a virus!)
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Old 07-04-2010, 04:20 AM
 
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To me it seems like it makes sense to eliminate one at a time (eg. start with gluten and see how that goes, then eliminate dairy to see what change that makes). I don't know if that is how most people go about doing it, but I *think* that's what I would do...
We tried that with various foods and there was no improvements whatsoever. But I knew it had to be food because ds2's skin clears really quickly whenever he goes off food for a few days (diarrhea, throwing up). Finally we did a blanket avoidance of the top allergens ALL AT THE SAME TIME (gluten, dairy, eggs, corn, soy, fish, seafood, nuts, seeds, colorings/preservatives), and we FINALLY saw clear improvements within a week.

I just thought I would share that because I was getting really confused and disheartened for the longest time while ds2 was deteriorating and we were trying to eliminate food item one at a time with no results. Within a month of this restricted diet, he put on almost a kg and his skin has never looked better (though not completely healed). His eyebags were gone, his constant sniffing also stopped.

I suspect DS2 has leaky gut with a fundamental gluten problem, and that may be why he needed to avoid such an extensive list of food before recovery can begin. I recently tried him on egg yolk again and he seemed to be fine! (In the past it would induce diarrhea). He recently had some seafood by mistake and I was horrified becuase the last time he had it, he turned all red within half and hour and had a really bad flare-up that lasted for weeks with infected wounds. But now, this time, he only scratched for a couple of hours at night and he managed to go back to sleep after 2am and he was fine the next day! So I think for us, avoiding the trigger foods, esp gluten, and allowing the guts to heal is the right track for us.
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Old 07-04-2010, 04:48 AM
 
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Have you encountered the book Healing with Wholefoods? Can't remember the author. it is a huge volume but really helpful. I used to have major allergies gluten, dairy, soy, nuts, etc a few years of food elimination diets and healthy living and i can tolerate everything in moderation. My advice is work up to it slowly. pick a few doable changes and build on them. it eventually becomes easier than a processsed diet. it is hard to break throught the above mentioned opiate effect and prob more so with kids, can DH take a week off to help? in the name of long term improvement? because at first it is a tough learning curve and you'll need help too manage the mood swings. I run on the theory it takes 21 days to change a habit so psyche up for a tough month for the greater good!!
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Old 07-04-2010, 08:01 PM - Thread Starter
 
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You can do peanut butter and banana sandwiches on rice cakes. And personally I'd switch to almond, hemp, or rice milk before I'd give boys soymilk with all the plant estrogens. You could still make a gluten free banana bread or muffins. I make coconut milk yogurt in my yogurt maker.
Thank you so much! Lots of good ideas in your post.

The reason we chose soy milk is because almond and rice milk only have a tiny bit of protein. (I don't know about hemp milk, I've never seen it in the grocery store...) I know plenty of other foods have enough protein (esp. if you add up the smaller amounts from several different foods), but we do find that they do much better with more protein than less. Same with me (and DH too I believe). I don't drink soymilk myself, but I do have cow's milk in the morning, and I really have not ever found a substitute with the same "staying power". DH is the same way. Anyway they pretty much only have soy milk at breakfast, they are not drinking it all day long (that would concern me too).

For making gluten free banana bread etc - what do you think is the best substitute? Rice flour I guess? I think it's either that or buckwheat (which we don't like), or is there something else I am missing?

One more question - you mentioned a lot of substitutions using corn - do you ever worry about developing a corn sensitivity, or aggravating an existing one? I have no reason to believe that they are corn sensitive, but I understand that it is a common sensitivity.

Mmm, bean chili and cornbread... it would be nice if DS3 and I weren't the only ones who liked it, lol
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Old 07-04-2010, 08:03 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We tried that with various foods and there was no improvements whatsoever. But I knew it had to be food because ds2's skin clears really quickly whenever he goes off food for a few days (diarrhea, throwing up). Finally we did a blanket avoidance of the top allergens ALL AT THE SAME TIME (gluten, dairy, eggs, corn, soy, fish, seafood, nuts, seeds, colorings/preservatives), and we FINALLY saw clear improvements within a week.

I just thought I would share that because I was getting really confused and disheartened for the longest time while ds2 was deteriorating and we were trying to eliminate food item one at a time with no results. Within a month of this restricted diet, he put on almost a kg and his skin has never looked better (though not completely healed). His eyebags were gone, his constant sniffing also stopped.

I suspect DS2 has leaky gut with a fundamental gluten problem, and that may be why he needed to avoid such an extensive list of food before recovery can begin. I recently tried him on egg yolk again and he seemed to be fine! (In the past it would induce diarrhea). He recently had some seafood by mistake and I was horrified becuase the last time he had it, he turned all red within half and hour and had a really bad flare-up that lasted for weeks with infected wounds. But now, this time, he only scratched for a couple of hours at night and he managed to go back to sleep after 2am and he was fine the next day! So I think for us, avoiding the trigger foods, esp gluten, and allowing the guts to heal is the right track for us.
Thank you for sharing your experience. Our homeopaths/naturopath are also advising us to cut out gluten and dairy at the same time. We are going to start with those 2 and see how it goes.
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Old 07-04-2010, 08:09 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Have you encountered the book Healing with Wholefoods? Can't remember the author. it is a huge volume but really helpful. I used to have major allergies gluten, dairy, soy, nuts, etc a few years of food elimination diets and healthy living and i can tolerate everything in moderation. My advice is work up to it slowly. pick a few doable changes and build on them. it eventually becomes easier than a processsed diet. it is hard to break throught the above mentioned opiate effect and prob more so with kids, can DH take a week off to help? in the name of long term improvement? because at first it is a tough learning curve and you'll need help too manage the mood swings. I run on the theory it takes 21 days to change a habit so psyche up for a tough month for the greater good!!
Thanks, I will check for that book at the library! I also ordered several GF/CF cookbooks.

Unfortunately, no, DH can't really take any time off... he is self-employed so time off = no income. He's already booked off for a week in late August for a vacation and we will need to leave it at that for now. He does sometimes have time to come home for lunch, but is very rarely here in time to help with dinner (we eat at about 7 pm as it is).

I heard that the worst withdrawal for kids is the first 48 hours, so I am hoping that is true

OH - that is another thing I need to figure out - how to manage the vacation - we are doing a road trip and camping... argh. We won't be taking a lot of stuff with us (don't have a lot of packing room) so will mostly be picking up food at grocery stores along the way. We are very minimal campers and just take a small one-burner stove and a small cooler. So I am going to need to figure out some good meals for that!
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Old 07-05-2010, 04:41 AM
 
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Camping sounds like great fun. We picked up a food dehydrater for about $100 which easily pays for itself - just a matter of finding some good recipies, drying the ingredients and then rehydrating with boiled water. I have found a slow cooker helps a lot when DH can't be home to help with dinner - throw some veggies etc in at some point during the day when there is a 5 min lull in the craziness then let it bubble all day. Saves the dinner time crazy hour from being so tough. Good luck!!
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Old 07-05-2010, 06:17 AM
 
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ooh I love this thread! My son is GF/CF and I am GF (and should prob. be CF but that is another story). My son has HFA/ Asperger's depending on which diagnosis you believe.

We saw wonderful changes in behavior after eliminating gluten, and even more so after eliminating both gluten and dairy. He is no longer having night wakings/tantrums. He only gets the circles under his eyes if he has ingested something accidentally. When he gets gluten or dairy we start to see behaviors that haven't been a problem in ages- him sucking on his shirt, biting his arms, or trying to nip at others in anger, really wild tantrums, way less following directions, inability to complete tasks. He also has had physical symptoms like throwing up, lethargy, stomach trouble and so on. I started just with gluten but I feel like dairy was VERY important to eliminate.

We also had the RAST tests done, and the only thing he showed up allergic to was many different molds. Get the IgG tests done. Many times it will be fine but show up as an allergy on the IgG. My son sounds a lot like yours, and so does my nephew. We have lots of food allergies among the boy cousins in our family, along with vaccine reactions. He ate strawberries and within minutes was racing around the room, jumping on furniture, crashing on to the floor etc. They did IgG testing too and he has several food allergies.

Mama to my spirited J, and L, my homebirth: baby especially DTaP, MMR (family vax injuries)
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