Lactose Intolerance in our house

Lactose intolerance is something I never though about until my second baby.  She screamed…oh, for the first 8 weeks of her life, it seemed.  She had horrible reflux pains, and could only sleep sitting up, in my lap.  If she needed to sleep, I was in a chair.  My mother took to calling her “Screamin’ Mimi”   because once she got going, she couldn’t be consoled.

At 8 weeks, my grandpa sent me home with an extra carton of soy milk he had in the fridge- I’m never one to say no to groceries, and drank it with my next meal…and that was the day Mimi stopped screaming.  Oooooh boy, did I feel like a bad mom.  All this time my milk habit had been causing my newborn PAIN!  At that point she was able to sleep propped up in her carseat, and I was able to sleep in my bed.  On my back.  (Or on my stomach, if I wanted to!  After being pregnant, doesn’t that feel like such a decadent thing? 🙂  At 12 weeks she graduated to laying down in her crib for sleeping.

I kept all dairy out of my diet until she was 8 months old- I cautiously re-introduced it, and she seemed fine.  When we started solids, I discovered she was NOT OK eating it, though.  We had a lot of trial and error as I tried a “give her a little bit to build up immunity” approach, followed by a “cease and desist all dairy!” order.

I’ve noticed she’s OK with baked goods, and that seems to be a similar story based on the many anecdotal accounts I’ve seen.  One friend postulated it had to do with an interaction between the grain and dairy?  Perhaps there was a missing enzyme that the grain was lending?

At this point we have Mimi off all dairy, still.  She’s nearly 18 months old, and still nursing.  This confuses me though- mama milk is apparently high in lactose, so what gives?  Perhaps cow and goat milk just put her daily quota over the top?  (That’s a very good article to click over to, if you’re interested in lactose intolerance in infants.)

After reading this entry in Wikipedia (gadzooks- did I just assume I can make a medical decision based on a Wikipedia entry?) I’m going to try a few things with Mimi.

I just realized how long this is getting- man, I can get wordy when I get going!  Tomorrow I’ll fill you all in on what I’ve found in my research.  Here’s something to give you hope: “Sour cream and ice cream, like yogurt, if made the traditional way, may be tolerable.”

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6 Responses

  1. Sour cream, ice cream and yogurt..sounds good to me!

    • I know, right? 🙂

    • At least in our case it wasn’t the lactose. We tested it by using one of those lactose-free milks as advised by the pediatrician. It most definitely did NOT work. I read it’s common for children to have a sensitivity to the milk protein and that many outgrow it between the ages of 3 and 5. I noticed an improvement at 3 but he does better on soy so that’s what we do. My dr also said that the dairy in baked goods is usually relatively low so that’s why the baked goods didn’t cause problem. I think true “allergies” to the protein have a problem no matter where the dairy is found.

      • I was the the store last night looking at the lactose-free milk- if I didn’t have 2 quarts of perishable soymilk in the fridge, I would have picked up a half gallon. I’ll try and time my next trip better, and pick some up for her to try! (I got a few things that I think she might be able to have, so we have lots to test right now 🙂

        Our pancakes are 1/2 milk by volume, but perhaps since the lactose is in the liquid portion, it cooks out? That doesn’t make any sense either…this is all so weird 🙂

  2. Awww… poor baby 😦 And poor mama! I know how you feel so well. Our little guy started showing signs of food allergies/Eczema as an infant and it was showing itself in the form of severe Eczema. He was miserable for the first few years of his life with it too. We took him to so many doctors who kept giving us loads of creams and meds and they did nothing really. They burned his skin and he continued to get worse. We felt so exhausted and frustrated and he could only tolerate chicken, peas and rice for so long. We even did several allergy tests without anything coming up conclusive. It wasn’t until my dad told us about Belly Boost probiotics for kids (they are dairy free too) that we found hope. He not only loved to eat them, but they worked! OMGsoh…they really really worked! It was a miracle! He stated to clear up right away and we kept giving him more foods to try. He is now a happy and healthy little boy who can eat all kinds of foods. I truly believe there is a connection with the gut bacteria and food intolerance. I highly recommend you look into this! I have a mom blog called smilinggreenmom.com and it is all about allergies, and natural green living! I have yummy dairy egg and nut free recipes that are kid approved too! I would love to see you there 🙂 Our story about our son is here if you are interested http://www.vidazorb.com/index.html (how Vidazorb helped a boy with Eczema) Thanks and good luck!

  3. Apparently, kids are born with the ability to digest lactose… and then some lose it as they grow older.

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