The dairy-free diet

Duplo has always been a spitty baby. In the last few weeks, though, he has been screaming bloody murder for over an hour at a time up to several times a day. He won’t nurse; he won’t sleep. The only thing that seems to make him stop crying is holding him, facing out, with my arm (or Jon Boy’s) around his belly. He drenches whole outfits and spits up long after he finishes eating. It got to a point where he was just miserable. We were miserable.

So I followed the advice in my favorite little nursing manual and, for three days, stopped eating any potential problem food: chocolate, dairy, citrus, broccoli, onions, garlic, cinnamon, cayenne pepper, curry, green pepper, cabbage (which I never eat anyway), and cucumbers. By the third day, he was spitting much less, so I figured I’d done something right. The next step was to start reintroducing foods, one by one, and see if there was a reaction to any of them.

I was pretty sure dairy wasn’t the culprit because I haven’t noticed increased symptoms when I’ve given him formula, so I reintroduced dairy first. Duplo had an almost immediate reaction—one of the worst days for spitting, crying, and refusing to nurse we’d seen yet.

The next step was to go back off dairy for a full two weeks and see how it went. So, yeah. I’m almost done with two weeks of being off dairy, and here are my observations:

1) Breakfast isn’t as hard as I thought it would be. It turns out instant oatmeal doesn’t have any dry milk derivatives in it. And oatmeal, toast, and juice is a satisfying breakfast.

2) It turns out that most desserts have butter, milk, cream cheese, ice cream, cream, or yogurt in them. I haven’t had dessert in a week (excluding popsicles and peanut-butter-chocolate-syrup sandwiches that I have consumed in desperation). I think I’m going to make an apple crisp (with margarine instead of butter) tomorrow, though.

3) Because of #2, I have lost five pounds. I’m not eating any differently, except for my breakfasts and my lack of dessert. Apparently I was eating more ice cream than I would like to admit. . . .

4) I miss pizza and occasionally want a glass of milk. Other than that and dessert, going off dairy isn’t that hard for me.

So far Duplo is spitting up a lot less, but he’s by no means cured. We still have to keep burp cloths handy, and he still has fussy times. The thing is, he’s eating a lot better. It’s like he’s making up for lost time now that he realizes it isn’t all going to come back up and hurt him. We also got him a prescription for antacids today to relieve his heartburn. I’m feeling optimistic that between the medicine and my avoiding dairy, Duplo will be a happy baby soon.

2 Comments

    Poor Duplo! I’m glad you figured out what at least part of the problem was. I’m sorry to hear that this means no dessert, though.

    I feel your pain with the spitting up. Although I don’t think Wesley’s is related to food allergies, and it’s not acidic (so it doesn’t hurt him). But Wes is over one and still spitting up. A lot. At all hours of the day, whether it’s close to feeding time or not. I tried feeding him whole milk once to see if it’d be any less spit-up-able than formula or breast milk, and, whoa boy, whole milk smells baaaad when it comes back up again. So we’re back on formula. The doctor says he’ll outgrow it eventually. And when he does, to celebrate we’re going to shampoo our rugs.

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