Monday, January 14, 2008

Milk - Not A Breastfeeding Post :)

I have been meaning to post a somewhat in-depth post about Rocky and our recognition of some food allergy stuff going on with him, and am just now getting to it. Close friends and family know that it was with him at 9 months old that I finally had to seek out SOMETHING to help with crankiness and colic and my post-partum depression. Long-story-WAY short, we realized there were MAJOR yeast issues mixed with some food allergies (in my breastmilk - mostly peanuts but possibly dairy, too) which ultimately put us on our path to supplements and careful food choices. When he and I both made MASSIVE improvements over the following months, I pretty much declared us "cured" as long as we stuck with the supplements and watchful diet.

When we moved in with the Gardeners, Rocky & He-Man both had these weird little bouts of puking. It wasn't a real serious thing because it happened in the mornings and then they got better. It lasted for a couple of mornings and then went away and then came back a little later for another few days and then that was it. I was able to logically conclude that it was their immune systems responding to a new environment and possibly new germs...whatever. They never were laid-out sick and always improved as the day went on. It was a "morning sickness" of sorts. Rocky was always sicker than He-man.

Soon afterwards, Rocky started with VERY annoying tics. It was almost like a pee-pee dance. We would say, "do you need to go to the bathroom?" He swore he didn't and it became evident he was telling the truth. He then started with a weird chapped mouth. A-ha! We thought we had figured it out again! HONEY MUSTARD! He's been known to get honey mustard "rashes" around his mouth in the past and we thought, Hmmm....maybe he's eating too much honey mustard and it's got sugar and it's making him wiggly?

No more honey mustard.

Still, wiggling.

(I really meant to make this a quick story...)

Fast-foward. Still we can't figure out the wiggling. It becomes amplified. He obviously can't control it. Last Sunday, we were informed by his Sunday School teachers that his behavior was getting out of control. We were even asked, "What's changed?"

So the REAL investigation started. If it's not honey mustard or condiments (because we cut them ALL out) what could it be?

I believe God divinely light-bulbed me.

What change occurred when we moved here that could possibly answer not only the wiggling, but the chapped lips, and the pukes? SOY MILK!

When we got here, the kids were introduced to dry cereal. Yes, they had spent the night here & other places before and have had dry cereal for breakfast but never at home and therefore, never in large quantities. Since we've always been very, VERY limited on cow's milk (because of Indie's sensitivity to it and for general health reasons) we decided to try the kids on the alternative soy milk.

Rocky LOVED IT! He ate double helpings almost every morning for breakfast. And guess what! THAT is the time the puking started (and took a break when we ran out!) And since he ate MORE than He-Man, it makes sense that he was sicker! And since he got better as he puked it out of his system, he felt better as the day wore on. And like many addictions that accompany food allergies, the 'effects' wear off after a little while. When his body quit trying to throw it up, he started getting the rash on his face. When the soy milk kept going into the body, I believe the toxicity level raised to a point where his immune system almost quit working on it. And the toxic reaction of his body caused the twitches.

After hearing the complaints from the Sunday School teacher, I started googling soy milk and ADD/ADHD. SURE ENOUGH (and I knew this and wanted to say 'DUH') the soy was very likely a HUGE factor. It also dawned on me that this could also be a reason for my struggles with him in the mornings during school.

So now we are back to NO milk, soy or cow, and very limited dairy altogether. Until his system detoxes a little bit, we're trying to stay very low on all condiments that might have soybean oils and products as well.

And I'm thrilled to say that THINGS ARE MUCH BETTER! I do believe we have finally come to some real conclusion on this. Hopefully, now that we're really paying attention, we can get him back to 100% normalcy (whatever that is.) His wiggling is WAY better and his SS teachers told us "perfect behavior" yesterday when we picked him up!

What a reminder to us that food allergies can appear/re-appear so easily! Now, it really doesn't surprise me, considering our dietary/behavioral history during pregnancy and post-partum but I just didn't put the pieces together as soon as I wish I had.

Thank God for helping us!


Christy said...

Wow! I'm so glad you found an answer. We're beginning the SLOW process of figuring out why all of us (but Emily and Steven more prominently) have allergy shiners. At times, Steven's are so bad that he literally looks like he's been punched in the face. Other times, he just looks like could use a nap.

It's tough but we're working to get more whole foods into us a family but man. I'd love to know what a normal menu looks like for you guys.

karen said...

I totally Agree with you here! Ryan has issues with dairy/cheese/and soy due to his stomach and the Dr.'s at Children's hospital totally had me take Ryan off Dairy all together and certain juices, and just give him a half a cup of milk in the A.M. and the rest of the day Water. What a difference in his overall stomach and rash issue's .

Amy said...

That is wild! I'm glad you figured out what was causing all this problem. That soy milk is yuck to me! I'd love to hear what you use instead of milk. It's in everything I make, oatmeal, baked oatmeal, pancakes, etc. It's a breakfast staple. We tried to cut back on how much milk we drink but find it hard.