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I really need advice, support, anything!

711 Views 15 Replies 13 Participants Last post by  spiralmg
So, just got back from getting Samara allergy tested to find out what's causing the excema. It was a MSA test.

It shows that she is sensitive to dairy, eggs, wheat, and gluten. And some fabrics she's sensitive to are acrylic, polyester, and nylon.

We just switched to all Fuzzibunz. DARNIT! So, now she can't use those. So, what do I do here? I switched to an all FB stash because fitteds, prefolds, and covers were just driving me nuts. And I sold them all.
So, she's currently in sposies. Huggies Supreme. At least they're not perfumed like Pampers. I'm going to look into 7th Gen diapers tonight, but I hear they're expnesive.

I have to eliminate all of the above foods from my diet. My mom, the woman who had homebirths and bf me and my older brother for 2 years each is telling me to quit bfing and put her on soy formula!
: Sure, it will clear up her skin more quickly by doing that, but then she doesn't get all of the important breast milk stuff. My mom's reasoning is that since Samara is "suffering" that she needs it cleared up ASAP and breastfeeding is only prolonging the process since it will take a long time to clear from my system and then clear from her system. And she's also saying that I can't possibly provide adequate breastmilk on such a restricted diet. Now, I know this isn't true. I just can't believe that she, of all people, would say this to me. She is the whole reason I'm "crunchy". I am following in her footsteps. I value her opinion so much, but I feel like she's just way off here. What I need right now is support.
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Aww! I'm sorry she is allergic to so much! Glad you have an answer now though as to what is causing it.

Re: diapers.....does she get rashes on her butt? I have Daph in FB too and she doesnt get rashes but when I let her sleep on a fleece baby blanket, she got a bit of eczema on her cheeks. I wonder if it makes a difference (??). When I used disposables on vacation for Jev I used the 7th gen ones too. In the store they were a rip off but I bought them buy the case at (free shipping) and they were usually discounted there too.

I definately wouldnt do soy formula because of the phytoestrogens in it. That is my worry with soy. Plus breastmilk is the best thing for allergies. I see a banner on the side of this website for a cookbook for dairy, gluten free recipes...maybe that would help? At Trader Joes (and healthfood grocery stores) I see special foods that are dairy, egg, wheat, gluten waffles/cereals and other premade foods. I'm gonna see if I can find recipe websites.

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Geez, that sounds hard
Amalie's allergic to dairy and that's bad enough. I can't imagine dealing with so many sensitivities at once.

Your mom is probably trying to help. My mom says some goofy things too when she's trying to be helpful.

Eggs are pretty manageable to eliminate unless you are just a big egg eater. You can often substitute flax seed paste for eggs when baking. Dairy is harder as there is soooo much hidden dairy. Even soy cheese often contains whey or casein, annoyingly.

Wheat and especially gluten are tricky if you like your breads. I have had good success with oat flour in many cookie and quick bread recipes; oats are sometimes contaminated with gluten though.

It's true that it will take a while for all the allergens to clear your system. You might want to ask her doc if there's something topical you can give for short term relief while the elimination diet 'kicks in.' Amalie has eczema also, and while it's mostly under control, it still flares up from time to time for unknown reasons. We have a prescription cortisone+lidocaine cream for those times. I don't know if you can use something like that on an infant though. Before we tracked down the dairy allergy she also got some relief from Gentle Naturals Baby Eczema Cream.

As to the diapers, well, you gotta do what you gotta do, you know? We use sposies too, because we don't have a washer. We get store brand ones which are also not perfumed and are cheap.

The worst part about dealing with eczema, for me, was the months before we tracked down the (main) cause, when nothing would really clear it up except Elidel, which I was scared to use. Hopefully you are now over the hump and Samara's skin will soon be cleared up!
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How big is Samara? I have a lot of infant sized prefolds and could send some, if she's not too big for them already.

I'm sorry to hear that your mom is not being more supportive of breastfeeding. She probably just wants to make things easier for you and your babe and thinks that switching to formula would do that. I bet if you want to keep breastfeeding, you can find lots of support and help from the forums here. Let us know what we can do to help - I see Desiree is already surfing for recipes for you!
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that sucks Bethany. im so sorry to hear that you have to eliminate so much. i am trying to eliminate dairy but its so hard...i cant imagine.
im sure your mom is trying to help and just doesnt want to see you go through so much. try to see what she says as an expression of love for you. but you know what is best...and it is to keep bf'ing. it will only take a few weeks, and like you said, she has had this condition for awhile and it doesnt seem to bother her.
as far as dipes, i dont know what size she is in but i have some small and med's. are your fb's meds? you can get rid of those very quickly im sure. is she allergic to the inside? not what you stuff it with?
keep strong.
s (although i cant really send the smilie thingy right now).
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ok, this is coming from someone who has BTDT and honestly I'd kill to only have to do gluten/egg/dairy free, its so easy! BUT and a big BUT, I can say that because we've been doing this for 5 years. Dairy free is going to be the easiest part imo, just switch to rice milk (not Rice Dream though, its not gluten free) or use DariFree both are decent enough. I'd avoid Soy like the plague since its a very common allergen Eggs are tricky and you will get to learn more about baking then you ever wanted to know, if you PM me your email I'll send you a word file that explains egg free cooking and subs and what to use when. Gluten free is going to be a big change, the easiest will be to just drop all breads for now and just eat seasoned meats and veggies. If you want to write up a list of what your normally eat and post it I'm sure we could make enough suggestions to replace stuff to make the transition easier.
i clicked on the picture of your beautiful little girl and gasped because her eczema is so like what my dd had at her age. i was pressured by everyone, stangers on the bus even to switch to formula. i am so glad i didn't. dd is now three and still nurses and still needs it so much. and she is still itchy, but it is worlds better. WORLDS.
please pm me if you want to talk about things that we tried, or are still trying. (right now i'm attempting the SCD, sort of, that people on the healing your gut tribe talk about.) i truly believe that EVERYTHING we did helped in someway. but i swear to you - the biggest leap in healing happened right after we saw a chinese herbalist who treated me only, and after that i vowed to think of my milk as healing, wonderful, alive and magic, just like yours is. follow your intuition - it is your greatest tool. i have to run but i'll come back to this thread and check on you. i so wish i had a picture of dd to share with you. i never thought i'd see her so smooth and clear. it will happen, it's just a long road. and it's so hard when it's on their sweet face. everyone has something to say about it - i used to cringe when every damn person who would talk to dd would start with "poor baby" and how that would change her perception of herself. ugh - i'm totally rambling, sorry. that picture, i just, it seems like so long ago, but i remember the pain of the worry so clearly.
for what it's worth you can eat well and plenty - i'd be happy to talk anytime about recipes, ect.
all my love to you mama - she's beautiful and i'm sure she's equally delightful - sending strength.
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This thread has been so interesting to me, because although we are not dealing with baby eczema, we are dealing with some other issues and at this point are basically a wheat, dairy, sugar/sweets, and cold-food-free household. We are also leaning towards starting to eliminate some environmental issues (such as no more enzymes and botanical oils in our laundry detergent, for example).We have also been working with a traditional chinese medicine dr. with some amazing results.

I really feel that you should not stop breastfeeding, but just adjust your diet and perhaps work with a TCM practitioner to heal the problem from within. She will gain so much by breastfeeding both in terms of overall health and emotional stability from the closeness to you.

A question for some of the above posters - I am wondering if there are other things birthjunkie can eat, such as grains?
- Does brown rice have gluten?
- What about other grains such as oat barley, millet, quinoa, amaranth, spelt?
- What about other milks, like oat, almond or hazelnut?
- What about buckwheat? That is actually a seed, but can be used like a grain.
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Originally Posted by spiralmg
A question for some of the above posters - I am wondering if there are other things birthjunkie can eat, such as grains?
- Does brown rice have gluten?
- What about other grains such as oat barley, millet, quinoa, amaranth, spelt?
- What about other milks, like oat, almond or hazelnut?
- What about buckwheat? That is actually a seed, but can be used like a grain.
here's what my understanding is:
brown rice - okay
oat - not okay with gluten intolerance
barley - ""
millet - i *think* it's okay
quinoa - okay as long as you can eat corn
amaranth - okay
spelt - can go either way (depends on the person), but better to err on the side of caution

almond/hazelnut milk is okay and easy to make yourself
not sure about buckwheat

like pp said, no rice dream beverage. veggies/meat is by far the easiest way to go and it's more like how we should eat anyhow.

believe me, it's easier to do than what it seems to be. once you get going it gets a lot easier. you can do it mama!
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You most certainly can produce enough breastmilk on an elimination diet. I did it for my middle son who is now 2 1/2 and healthy as can be. He was allergic to dairy, eggs, soy, wheat, rye, pork, potatoes and peanuts. I breastfed him for 21 months, when he self-weaned while I was pregnant with his little brother. Good luck to you mama! I'm so sorry those Fuzzi Bunz I sold you won't do you any good. The good part is you can resell them on Ebay and probably get back what you paid for them!
Oh my gosh I didn't realize you had pictures. Wow, Samara looks exactly like Kolaiah did at this age. His skin cleared up within a month of the elimination diet. You will be so pleased with the results and she will be so much happier. And breastfed babies are more likely to outgrow their food allergies. Mine outgrew some of his, though not peanuts or cow milk products.
oh mama i am so sorry but happy that now you know what is going on. if you don't want to go with prefolds again their are other cloth options that are 100%cotton. i've seen them i don't know where but i'm sure someone does. in the meantime, with jewely i used sposies, the cheap o store brands are JUST cotton none of that gel crap that is in the more expensive brands. the pampers have that and the huggies left little jellies on jewelys butt. i just liked the target brand or any of the store brands really.

also i might suggest cathe olsens cookbook vegetarian cooking for pregnant and lactatiing women. (i think that's what it's called.) i'll take a look in mine and see what type of recipes they have, you know how many their are that will fit your diet.

Like Rachel said, your mom truly is trying to help you by offering the easiest way. Not the best way, but the easiest way. Dh did this when we were going through our terrible breastfeeding struggles, saying I didn't have to keep it up, she'd be okay on formula, etc. He was honestly trying to help me in the best way he knew how to.

Your mom is trying to do the same. She sees your struggles, she sees you hurting (the emotional part, trying to figure it out, all the walls you know you're up against) and she wants to ease the pain.

But you know that breastfeeding is indeed the very best thing for little Samara. And you have ALL of our support regardless of what happens anyway. ... and... gosh, what wonderful advice you've received thus far with wonderful ladies who have been in your shoes and been successful.

hugs to you... and good luck on your journey!!!
I am sorry your mom is not being as supportive as you need now.

Breastfeeding is probably one of the best things you can continue to do for your daughter right now. As previously mentioned soy is another highly allergenic food to be careful of. Your body will always produce the best milk for Samara, yoou would be the first to suffer, by feeling run down, if your diet was not adequete. In thirrd world countries where starvation is rampant, breastfed babies are the heaathiest people there. Also one of the benifits to breast milk is the super soft baby skin. This comes from the fats in the milk that are the best for babies. These will be important for helping Samara's skin to heal as the allergens are removed.
First of all
. Thank you all SO much for your support. You have no idea how much it means to me. I haven't talked to my mom yet. We usually talk every day. Thankfully Dh is totally supporting me in continuing bf'ing. I was sure he'd side with my mom and encourage me to take the easy route. I was shocked that he was as supportive as he was last night. He told me that he knew it would be hard, but that he knows how strong I am and he has faith that I can do it.

Desiree, thanks for looking up recipes. That's really nice. Oh, and I'll have to check out Trader Joes for those dairy/wheat/egg free foods.

Heather, I think Samara may be too big for infant prefolds now. She's quiet the chunka! LOL!!! But thanks so much for offering.

Aileen, I know what you mean about people saying, "Awwww, poor baby." It is getting kind of old, but I know they don't mean any harm by it. I look forward to Samara having an "after" the battle picture with clear glowing baby skin.

Satori, thanks for the heads up about Rice Dream! I would have never thought to look for gluten in that. And wow, you've been doing this for 5 years?!?! WOW! I can't even imagine going that long. But, I suppose after you get over the initial hump it gets easier. Right?

Courtney, I didn't know that store brand diapers don't have those gel pellets. Hmmm, learn something new everyday. Thanks for the info!

Everyone else who I didn't personally address, THANK YOU for your support and kind words. Every single post here is like another hug to me, and I really, really, really, need it right now.
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Bethany, if you are able to eat brown rice, you will have it made. We rely on rice products heavily and it is not hard at all. There are so masny good rice crackers, noodles (Tinkyada brand is so exceptionally good), and even breads. We do not suffer at all. Another good cookbook is Feeding The Whole Family by Cynthia (?) Lair. It has really wonderful, delicious recipes that are made for adults, but that also have easy variations for babies and toddlers. Most are wheat-free, dairy free. And they taste magical! My doula cooked primarily from this cookbook for me right after Kali was born and I made lots of milk from these good lactation foods.
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