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07.24.12 / Going Dairy Free

If you follow me on Instagram, you may have noticed a lot of food pics lately.

We recently discovered that Mabrey is allergic – or at least very sensitive to – dairy foods.

Since the last time I posted about her, Mabrey progressively got fussier and fussier. She wouldn’t let me put her down even for a few seconds without a full on crying episode that included losing her voice, turning purple and shaking her whole body. And by ‘me’ I mean me. She would let Handy Hubby hold her sometimes but absolutely no one else could hold her for an entire month without the aforementioned chaos ensuing. It made it very difficult to go anywhere. She hated being in her car seat {because I wasn’t holding her} and once we got to where we were going, no one could really enjoy her because I had to hold her. She would even turn purple-faced if someone looked at her the wrong way while I was holding her.

I was exhausted. Not that I don’t like holding Mabrey but holding her 24/7 was rough. And she was still refusing to take a bottle. I had little time for anything else: my boys, sleep, the blog, cooking, anything house related, etc. It finally got to the point where I told HH one day after he got home from work ‘I don’t know how much longer I can do this.’ She had been extremely fussy that day. I told HH I thought something might be wrong with Mabrey because I had noticed red splotches popping up all over her arms and legs earlier in the day. We did some investigating and discovered that Mabrey had many {if not all} of the symptoms of a food allergy: extreme fussiness, sleeplessness, reflux, diarrhea {breastfed babies aren’t supposed to have snotty green stool}, general discontent, frequent hiccups, projectile vomiting and skin lesions.

Per La Leche recommendations, I decided I would eliminate all dairy foods {since they are the most popular food allergy culprit} from my diet for several weeks and see if that made a difference. What did I have to lose?

I implemented the change on a Wednesday evening and by the following afternoon, Mabrey was already showing significant improvement. She napped well and while on a playdate, she let my friend hold her and put her to sleep! This might not sound like much but after being the only person to hold her for about 5-6 weeks straight, this felt like heaven to my arms and back. She also let me put her down on her playmat and tend to house chores for a good chunk of time. Within 24 hours of starting my dairy free diet, Mabrey was a brand new baby. It was almost miraculous. Not only was she no longer fussy, she was actually happy!

Since I had read that it could take up to 6 weeks for the cow’s milk proteins to be completely cleared from a baby’s body, I wasn’t expecting improvement so quickly. Mabrey must have been extremely sensitive. Now, a little shy of two weeks from starting my dairy free diet, Mabrey is sleeping better {she still hasn’t made it all night but I can handle one or two feedings at night}, no longer has diarrhea, rarely cries {except when tired or hungry like a normal baby}, is content, spits up way less, and her lesions are nearly nonexistent. {The red patches on her elbows were the most severe and they will get angry if Mabrey is out in the heat.} But what gets me the most is she smiles at friends, family and strangers now. She’ll even let anyone hold her! She still refuses to take a bottle but I’m okay with that and so grateful that I don’t have to return to work at the pharmacy.

And I’m more than happy to be dairy free if it makes Mabrey happy. Happy baby = happy mama.

Looking back, I feel so stupid for not recognizing the problem sooner and getting frustrated with her. She just felt bad!

So, all the food pics are more for me than anyone else. I’m trying to focus on all the food I can eat instead of on the things I’m missing out on. {Ahem, chocolate, cheese, mayo and baked goods!} I have a newfound love for almond milk and Trader Joe’s chocolate frozen dessert made with coconut milk.

Do you have any experience with food sensitivities/allergies in babies? Got any great non-dairy recipes to share with me? Pretty please.

images: Dana Miller for House*Tweaking

130 Comments

I’m lactose intolerant, so consequently, I’m not a big dairy eater. I’ve heard that cow’s milk is for baby cows. It can be a tough adjustment at first, but once you’ve been away from it for a while, it gets easier. In particular, we like coconut milk in place of regular milk for desserty dishes.

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24.July.2012

As someone with sensitivity to dairy, I would just encourage you to keep testing and learning about your/Mabrey’s dairy sensitivities. Sometimes the quality of the dairy can have a huge impact (ie, has it been ultra pasturized or is it organic? etc.) as well as the type! I cannot do ice cream or large amounts of milk, but cheese, butter, sour cream, yogurt, etc do not have any impact on me at all! Actually eating the cultures in yogurt has really helped me to be able to eat more dairy with no issues. For a long time I was avoiding all kinds of dairy and I wish I knew all this sooner!

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replied on July 24th, 2012

Ariel – I will probably try introducing dairy items one by one in the future. At the time I went dairy free, I was eating a LOT of greek yogurt {like once or twice a day} and cow’s milk {I drank a huge glass every night before bed}. I have a feeling those were the big culprits and that maybe a little cheese wouldn’t have such an effect. We’ll see!

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24.July.2012

I am breastfeeding my one month old who has some similar symptoms. I spent 5 days on the no dairy diet and it was depressing!!! I didn’t realize that I have some sort of dairy with nearly every meal. My son did not improve at all while I was on the diet so the pedi is going to treat him for reflux now and told me I could resume dairy (pedi said even though it takes weeks for all of the cow’s milk proteins to leave my breastmilk, we should have seen at least a mild improvement from my son within 5 days). Crossing my fingers that it solves the problem because I am so relieved to be allowed to eat dairy again! Good luck with Mabrey!

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24.July.2012

my son was the EXACT same way. He never let anyone else hold him. It was exhausting. I couldnt leave the house for an hour for fear my husband might pull all of his hair out.& the doctor was insistant that he had ecsema..but that never sounded right to me.. As a first time mom I had no idea about the milk allergy. If baby number 2 is the same way I may have to give the diary free thing a try..now I seriously wonder if that would have helped him.

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24.July.2012

I am sensitive to dairy also, and although I can have it in small doses, I try to minimize it. When I am craving the creaminess that dairy offers, I try to sub with lots of avocado where cheese might go, coconut oil for butter (go bake some brownies made with coconut oil instead of butter, you will thank me!), and almond milk as you mentioned above. I enjoy searching through paleo recipes as they tend to be very inventive, healthy and dairy free. I also limit gluten as well though which is how I found them in the first place. Best of luck!

Since you asked for specifics, here’s a recipe I tried yesterday. Mine was not so fancy looking (I just diced the tomatoes and beets), but it was soooo good. I had a bit of leftovers which kept well overnight and got tossed with lettuce and chicken the next day for a new spin on it. http://www.marthastewart.com/316643/beet-and-tomato-salad?czone=food/produce-guide-cnt/summer-produce-recipes&center=276955&gallery=274226&slide=284602

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24.July.2012

I’m so glad you figured out the issue! It’s so hard to see them in pain :( We went through the same thing with our first child, looked into a dairy allergy only to be told by our doctor “probably not”, and lived an incredible hard first 18 months. At that point a blood test proved old Doc wrong, and added 11 other foods to my boy’s allergy list. Ouch. One of my greatest resources starting out was the book “Go Dairy Free”, by Alisa Marie Fleming. Before baby #2 was born I started a now horribly neglected blog dedicated to sharing allergy-friendly recipes (url above). But most of the time I’ve found just subbing rice (or soy) milk for cows milk, and organic palm shortening or canola oil for butter has done the trick. Good luck! And you are an awesome mama for doing this!

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24.July.2012

Mabrey is beautiful! I’m so glad you figured out what was going on, I know from first hand experience that a crying baby is not fun :( I don’t know if it’s offered in your area, but I do natural treatments for allergies and LOVE them. It’s a pratice called NAET. Hope she continues to improve :)

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24.July.2012

I so feel for you! My younger son (now 18 months), became miserable exactly as you described. At 6 weeks he started constantly crying and grunting so hard that he completely lost his voice for the next 6 weeks. Every single time we were in the car he would cry hysterically with this painful, heartbreaking, rasp. After a desperate visit to the ped, I simultaneously cut dairy, he went on reflux meds, and he had a session with a craniosacral therapist. That night he slept peacefully (with 2 wakeups to nurse) and it felt like a miracle. I still don’t know which thing did the trick, but he was comfortable and happy after that. We cut out the reflux medicine at 6 months and he started eating/drinking dairy at a year without issue. During my dairy-free nursing days I enjoyed coconut yogurt and a LOT of almond milk chocolate pudding. And scrambled eggs with salsa over english muffins.

My older son (who turns 3 today!) had all those same symptoms also, but at age 2. After several difficult and very frightening weeks, he was diagnosed with celiac disease at 27 months. Since then our whole household has gone gluten-free, and he was dairy-free for about 6 months post-diagnosis while his system healed enough to be able to digest dairy. In those early days we ate a lot of Van’s frozen waffles (which are also dairy-free) with syrup, GF chicken nuggets, almond butter and jelly sandwiches, and almond butter on rice cakes.

(sorry for the novel!!)

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24.July.2012

Dana, I’m so glad you figured it out and saw improvement so quickly. My daughter, now 5, is allergic to dairy, wheat, and eggs. It really isn’t as hard as you think it’s going to be when you first realize. Cheese is sad to give up, but so worth it. And you can eat chocolate as long as it is dairy free. Most dark chocolate is safe, and you can make delicious desserts with cocoa powder, which is also dairy free.

My daughter is SUCH a healthy eater and really appreciates the good food we eat. Most of the meals I make are completely dairy free. But on a night like tonight where we’re having fajitas that my boys will eat with shredded cheese, I make a special salad or side dish that my daughter will love.

Recently I made dairy free caesar salad dressing for the first time, and Ava loved it. She had never had a creamy dressing before due to her allergies, but this is made with vegan mayo, and I of course left out the parmesan cheese. It’s absolutely delicious–let me know if you’d like the recipe.

Best of luck!

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24.July.2012

I’m so glad to hear you figured it out quickly! My mom is allergic to eggs, and myself I can’t handle doses of red food dye, so I’ve heard just how terrifying it is to realize that your kid is sick and just couldn’t tell you what’s wrong.

I would suggest you stock up on cans of coconut milk. Not the stuff in the dairy section at the grocery store, but usually in the baking section near the condensed milk or over in canned vegetables. It’s thick and creamy and can replace cream and milk in most baking recipes. It’s sweet and lovely in curries and similar dishes too, and I’ve even made a passable cream sauces with it! There’s a great cookbook called the Veganomicon that I swear by between my friends that are allergic to milk/lactose intolerant, allergic to wheat/celiac disease sufferers, the two egg allergies in my family, and the scores of vegetarians I know. I would also suggest investing in a crockpot and modifying vegetarian recipes for that if you want to include meat. More vegetarian cookbooks are now made with basically no dairy products needed, so that should really help. My personal favorite is Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker, I’ve cooked for 6+ adults using that book inexpensively and dealing with a ton of the aforementioned food needs.

Good luck, and get the girl to an allergist when she’s a little older (I’m sure you’re already planning that). Turned out I didn’t have just red food dye, but also animal dander and a sensitivity to codeine and mold that we dealt with.

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24.July.2012

Poor girl…both of you! My sister is allergic to dairy (along with pretty much everything) and my daughter is sensitive to it as well (major moodiness associated with consuming dairy). Needless to say we don’t do a lot of dairy around the house.

I am a big fan of coconut/almond milk as a substitute. Rice and soy milk I stay away from for a multitude of reasons. Also coconut oil or coconut butter over vegetable oils (yuck!) as a butter replacement. Some people with milk sensitivities are also able to use clarified butter or ghee. Not all but it is an option to try…possibly in the future.

As for recipes a great resource is to look for recipes associated with the paleo diet (as suggested by Catherine above). Lots of delicious ideas and the majority without dairy (though not always as some paleo followers still use dairy). A few I would recommend checking out are nomnompaleo.com, whole9life.com, balancedbites.com, civilizedcavemancooking.com, paleOMG.com.

Good luck and I hope that helps!

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24.July.2012

Glad you found a solution! Going dairy-free seems like you’re making a sacrifice at first, but once you get used to it and start to realize all the benefits, you might never go back! We’ve been dairy-free since December and I honestly have never felt better. You can still eat chocolate – dark chocolate is a great option, you can also make your own dairy-free chocolate syrup (basically just sugar, water, cocoa powder, vanilla and salt) and add that to whatever you’re wanting to make chocolatey. You can make dairy free chocolate pudding with avocados, cocoa powder, sweetener, vanilla.
I use almond milk for pancakes and baking, you can use Earth Balance “butter” – bakes up just like the real thing.
For meals, lots of indian/thai dishes are dairy free – relying on coconut milk instead. You can also saute stuff in vegetable broth instead of butter, cooks up the same.
If you want actual recipes, email me – I’m happy to share. I have loads on my blog (linked to my name above), but can give you more specific tips via email. I’m happy to share – I’ve helped several family members go dairy free since December.

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24.July.2012

Dana, I feel like I read my own story! My own son (now 19 months old) has had the same dairy problems since he was born… When I finally found a doctor who said I had to change my food, I saw some change. He’s – like me – lactose intolerant, but also I had to stop eating tomatoes, peppers, strawberries and other sorts of foods that I would never had thought would be “bad” for my own baby. But after leaving out these sorts of things, I definitely saw some improvement. At first my own son wouldn’t stop crying, even after breastfeeding I didn’t know how to comfort him. He sometimes cried so hysterical, I thought he would lose his voice…
After a few sessions with a befriended osteopath and a new child doctor I found here in town, they all told me it had something to do with his bowel system. It got better after some sessions at the osteopath and only after I left out the “forbidden food” and after my son’s bowel system got “better”… that was after 6 months. I truly believe it has got something to do with our food that we take.
So I really hope you will find a solution because I understand completely how you must feel at this moment when your baby is crying hysterically…
Wish you all the best and lots of love and a big hug,
Inge x

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24.July.2012

When I was having terrible digestive issues, I made an appointment with my doc. Just prior to going it hit me that this may be a dairy issue. I told my husband, I will jump off the table a club that doctor if he tell me I can’t have cheese anymore. Seriously, cheese and milk were/are my two favorite things. It’s a love hate relationship. I love them and they hate me.

As much as I thought I could not live without them, I realized once I removed all dairy from my diet that they were making me feel miserable. I splurge and have pizza now and then, but for the most part, I have kicked dairy to the curb. It is the reason for my constant congestion and increased asthma attacks.

The site I relied on to get to me through the 14 day lactose challenge was godairyfree.org. Their shopping list of items to avoid is long but so informative. You have no idea all the ways we consume dairy. I still go visit recipes there and refresh myself on the things I should avoid to make sure nothing new has hit the list.

Its an incredible sacrifice to give up dairy; however, your baby is worth it. I bet you will feel better and more energy as time moves forward also. My detox took 7 days. Each on I felt like I had the worse flu…achy joints, chills, fatigue. I didn’t leave the couch. But on the 8th day I felt fantastic with more energy than I thought possible. My doctor said we are the only animal that consumes another animals milk. It is unnatural.

Good luck and best wishes!

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24.July.2012

Hello Dana, You must try baking with coconut oil in place of butter and almond milk in place of cow’s milk, in my opinion some things taste even better that way….(mmmm muffins!) Even better, try making your own almond milk, it’s so, so easy and doesn’t have all the additives/preservatives of the store bought stuff. Here’s a link from my blog with a nut milk how to…http://sophieandneil.blogspot.ca/2011/11/what-i-like-to-do-with-nuts.html. try it!!
P.S Mabrey is so adorable!!

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24.July.2012

Wow, I can’t even tell you how much I know what you are feeling! My son was diagnosed with dairy and egg allergies at 11 months. I nursed until he was 18 mo, so 9 months dairy and egg free! The first two weeks were hardest! After a month or so, it became very normal. Hardest is going out to eat. My son is 3 now and starting to have some dairy in his diet, stuff that it’s cooked in. The toughest things for me were cheese, ranch, dips, sauces etc…. I substitute milk in recipes with his rice milk and butter with his soy margarine and have had a few turn out even better! FYI you can have Oreos!! :) Hang in there… I am a breastfeeding counselor and see moms go through this a lot. You are an amazing mom for making the sacrifice for your daughter!!

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replied on July 24th, 2012

Such a good point about cooking dairy into food! I’m lactose intolerant but I can have a lot more dairy if something is cooked or baked with it. The reason is because it breaks down the sugar / lactose in the food :)

There is such a thing called lactose pills made by Lactaid. They used to be fairly effective for me as a child. They are good to have on hand if your child really wants to try something with dairy. I remember taking them when I accidentally ate something with dairy. They help with the symptoms!

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replied on July 25th, 2012

Unfortunately, I think the intolerance is due to the cow’s milk protein, not the sugar, lactose. But for anyone lactose-intolerant, Lactaid would be an option.

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24.July.2012

I so completely understand. I am sure that the past few months have been exhausting (mentally/physically/emotionally) for you! They were for me, and unfortunately I wasn’t as quick as you’ve been to pick up on the allergy. It wasn’t until my son was almost ONE that I discovered he was allergic to dairy! His pediatrician scoffed at my suggestion, and it wasn’t until I took him off (aka myself too!) of dairy out of desperation, that he finally improved. I would say that to make it easier on the two of us, I also limited dairy for my husband (it was the hardest on him!). We switched to almond milk, like you mentioned, and started eating MUCH more rice based dishes. Brown rice w/ BBQ meat of some kind (fish/steak/chicken), salads with quinoa and lots of ‘stuff’ on them (with rice on the side for my kids!), tacos are a hit (minus the cheese and sour cream of course!), and taco salad is an easy alternative.

My son is 4 1/2 now, and tolerates dairy better. But this is only a recent thing! I still don’t allow him to drink plain milk, eat string cheese, or ice cream (unless it’s a SPECIAL occasion) but he does get things like Mac N’ Cheese, or foods that have traces of milk in them (this is pretty much anything processed). He understands it though, and will actually ask “Does this have cow milk in it Mommy???”, because he knows that he could get a stomach ache if it does. It’s no fun going dairy free, but know that it gets easier ;-) Congrats on getting more sleep and a little more freedom!!!

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24.July.2012

my babies are big now {7, 13, 18} but i just posted a great vegan sauce recipe on my blog.
delish on rice & beans – also as a mayo replacement.
come check it out! http://five-ten-fifteen.blogspot.com/2012/07/vegan-super-sauce-and-my-new-blender.html

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24.July.2012

My daughter was like that too … cried at the breast and never comfort nursed as newborn. When she turned 4 or 5, she was able to describe what milk did to her. She said it made her throat itch, so it was good confirmation, even years later, to know that she really did have issues with milk. Now, at almost 10, she says it makes her throat hurt. She can drink kefir, eat yogurt and cheese, butter and heavy cream without symptoms now. Milk (non-homogenized) is tolerated in a small amount (like on cereal).

When you feel up to it, you might want to try adding butter or cream back in … they are without lactose or casein! And, wow, what a world of taste opens up with butter and cream!

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24.July.2012

Since I’ve known my husband 7+ years I’ve tried many Dairyfree recipes because he is lactose intolerant. We lucked out because we have Cabot cheddar cheese here in new england and its naturally lactose free. Rather than having to make two things of everything like pizza I use their cheddar for everything. I highly recommend it if your missing cheese. The coconut milk ice cream is so good too. Mabrey is so adorable :-) glad to hear she doing better!

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24.July.2012

I love quinoa with cherub tomatos, basil, olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Super yummers and healthy!

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24.July.2012

Both my kids were extremely allergic to dairy/soy protein. My first baby I couldn’t take the 24/7 screaming and stopped breastfeeding because I thought he was starving. About a week later he was put in the hospital for a few days while they tried to figure out what was causing blood in his stools. He ended up being diagnosed with a severe allergy and since I had stopped breastfeeding we were left having to buy ridiculously expensive prescription formula that insurance wouldn’t cover (they said they would only pay for it if he were to be put on a feeding tube first and there was no way I was going to let it get to that point). His doctor said the inside of his stomach looked like road rash. 22 months later I had my second baby and this time I was prepared for breastfeeding her so I stopped all dairy/soy products 1 month before she was born and was able to breastfeed her for over a year without any problems. (I did test to see if she had the allergy too and she also was allergic). I have a lot of great recipes I lived on for the year and a half I was dairy/soy free if you are interested in any of them. Good luck, you can do it!

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24.July.2012

My son Quinn is 3 1/2 months old and also allergic to dairy; I’ve been dairy free for 2 months now. I’ve become used to the changed diet, finding new treats to take the place of yogurt, cheese, and milk. Guacamole is awesome, and Emerald Almonds has a dark chocolate flavor that is dairy free and curbs the chocolate craving. I miss the Greek yogurt as well, and can’t find anything to take the place of a good piece of cheese. C’est la vie. My husband and I are planning a cheese eating, wine drinking, pasta loving trip to Italy when we finish breastfeeding, about a year from now, before we try for our second. Please share any recipes you find that are delish. Good luck and enjoy a happy healthy Mabrey.

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24.July.2012

I’m so sorry you have been going through this. It is so similar to dealing with my youngest as an infant so I can relate to that feeling of being exhausted and at your wits end. He too has allergies and it is amazing what a difference in personality removing food can make. My son also has an autism diagnosis and vision problems, but that aside, he went from being clung to me 24/7 and looking like he was in a daze/not interacting with anyone to being friendly and social when we removed all dairy from his diet. At 8.5 years the allergies are still coming. We’re up to corn, soy, dairy, food dye, coconut, peanuts and tree nuts. Luckily, none are life threatening, although he does get quite sick. It gets better when they are older and can communicate. I wish you and little Mabrey the best.

Angela

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24.July.2012

Nutritional yeast flakes are a cheesy tasting item to replace with chess. Also diya brand cheese is amazing and my husband makes amazing pizza with it.

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replied on July 25th, 2012

I think this is my first time commenting on your blog, but I’ve been enjoying reading about your family and Underdog for several months now. I had to chime in because my husband cannot tolerate dairy and I’ve spent the past 8 years figuring out how to cook dairy free.

Anyway, I second using nutritional yeast flakes (a great source of vitamin B12) in place of parmesan cheese and daiya cheese is one of the best vegan cheeses in my opinion. I also love earth balance as a butter replacement. It even works well in baked goods. I’ve used ground flax seeds with some success as an egg replacer in baked goods, or blended tofu can work as well.

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24.July.2012

Don’t feel stupid. Sometimes it takes time to figure these things out, especially on your own without doctor’s advise. It’s amazing how we can diagnose ourselves these days with the internet, often faster than scheduling a doc visit. Glad your lil one is feeling better, and now mommy can enjoy her more too. :)

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24.July.2012

I am not dairy free, but my boyfriend is (mostly) and this has taught me a lot about cooking without diary. I now rely on coconut oil and milk for a lot of baking and do not feel like it is a sacrifice at all! Avocado is good spread on toast or used in a vegan chocolate pudding. And you can make some really creamy dips and dressings with cashews (soaked and then blended).

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24.July.2012

I second the suggestions for the cookbook Veganomicon and also canned coconut milk. If you’re missing mayo, there’s a vegan mayo called Veganaise that is quite good. My husband says he actually prefers it to regular mayo. Honestly, if you have a Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s around, there are amazing dairy-free subs for almost everything except cheese (and, depending on your desperation level, some of the fake cheeses are almost decent-Daiya being the best of the bunch). And there’s no reason you should have to miss out on baked goods! Smart Balance margarine, coconut oil, or olive oil for butter, almond milk for milk…you’re good to go. Browse some vegan websites (you can always sub or add meat) for inspiration. I suggest Post Punk Kitchen and Oh She Glows- they both lean heavily on whole ingredients rather than fake this or that, which fits with your ‘focus on what you can eat’ attitude. And embrace Indian and Asian cuisine, which are often naturally dairy free or just require a olive oil for butter switch. Good luck!

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24.July.2012

So a few months ago I discovered that I have severe intolerances to dairy, eggs and yogurt. I have reluctantly eliminated them from my diet, but the difference is unreal. At this point I’ve replaced things like mayo and ice cream and milk for almond and soy varieties. I have yet to find a good vegan cheese – so please let me know if you do. It is amazing to me how dairy is in EVERYTHING that is good and holy, so I too am on the quest. Best of luck and so happy Mabrey is feeling better, which means mom is feeling better too!

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24.July.2012

So sorry you have this to deal with. Glad Mabrey’s doing better. I follow another blog of a classy lady who is vegan. Maybe you can adapt her recipes to add meat. Here’s a link to her posts she labeled food:

http://thegardenerscottage.blogspot.com/search/label/food

Good luck! :)

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24.July.2012

My youngest was sensitive to dairy when I was nursing…after eliminating dairy from my diet whilst nursing until 15 mos, she was okay with dairy by 1.5 years, and has no issues with dairy now.

My fav nondairy treat in summer was frozen banana run through a baby food mill–it gets creamy and as yummy as ice cream! Vanilla rice milk in lattes and on cereal was even better than milk. Good luck!

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24.July.2012

I had lactose intolerance as a baby (I still do as an adult) so I know all the foods that you end up avoiding! I’m sure a milk allergy is worse but it would be hard to tell until your baby’s system fully clears up.

Some of the other people commenting seem to be forgetting about goat cheese. People are most often only allergic or intolerance to cow’s milk. Goat milk and cheese is often a completely different story so you could give that a try in the future! (Unless you’re pushing for the vegan route)

Thankfully, there are so many easy alternatives to dairy now :) Good luck with it!

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24.July.2012

My 16-month old niece is highly allergic to a bunch of foods, including dairy. Some other culprits include soy (which is apparently in almost every processed food you can think of even if you can’t figure out why it would be) and corn. We stayed with them over the 4th of July and I can tell you that Coconut Bliss’s Almond Mocha Fudge ice cream is divine. My sister lives in Ohio so I’m pretty sure you should be able to get it.

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Hey Dana,

Good for you for figuring it out. Don’t feel bad for not realizing it sooner, allergies are tricky and sometimes they show up in families that don’t have a history with it at all. My son (now 2) is allergic to peanuts and egg, so we have lots of experience with food allergies- if you have any questions feel free to email me. Seriously! There is a lot of information out there, but sometimes you just want to talk to someone real, you know?

Also- I will tell you this. A LOT of babies are really sensitive to dairy while nursing and then they completely grow out of it. This happened with all my mom’s babies and also my sister’s. I hope that’s the case for you! But even if not, allergies really are manageable once you get the hang of it and find good substitutes. Look into restaurants with allergy menus (not all restaurants do it, but more and more are) and like you said, focus on all the benefits!

So glad you figured it out, sounds like it was so hard for awhile there. And really, feel free to email if you run into any questions about it! jennalynpitt@gmail.com

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24.July.2012

Dana, So sorry to hear about this! I’m glad you figured things out, it can very frustrating to not know whats wrong with your baby. Sending lots of love your way!!
I became very sensitive to dairy when I was 18 or 19 years old. It just happened one day. So I started taking pills before every meal to help with the digestion of enzymes but it eventually stopped working. i went to the doctor and had a test done for celiac (negative) and also to the hospital for a lactose intolerant test. Here, in Canada, they make you drink the sugars that are equal to that in milk and then you breathe in a tube every 15 minutes for 3 hours. I had no symptoms. They still don’t know whats wrong. I am now 26 and have been partially dairy free since that time. I drink lactose free milk, vegan/lactose free margarine, I eat a lactose-free ice cream, frozen yogurt is fine, and when I got preggo with Violet I started being able to tolerate mozzarella cheese, and now I can eat marble cheese, but not cheddar. I’ve been able to slowly add sour cream back in, but only in small doses, like once every two months. We do all our cooking and baking with lactose free milk. Our grocery store does sell lactose free cheese and lactose free coffee cream although I don’t buy it.
Anyways, just wanted to share! Hope things get better and better for you!

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24.July.2012

We have 3 out of 6 people in our house that are lactose intolerant (myself and two of our kids) so we have given up a lot of good foods in the last few years. I have slowly learned to cook and bake without.. I use almond milk in all the sweets recipes that call for milk… so that’s freeing. The thing I miss the most is cheese though.

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24.July.2012

Don’t feel bad, Dana! I was 12 when I learned I was lactose intolerant…on vacation. I had never had a problem with dairy, and every time we ate (I almost always had some sort of dairy in my meal), I would be sick within 20 minutes. My poor mom thought I had an eating disorder. Ironically, when I would complain that my stomach hurt, my parents would give me milk to settle my stomach. When we got back from vacation we went to the doctor and they suggested it might be a dairy allergy. Come to find out, it was. Sometimes we don’t think of the seemingly simplest, most obvious things because they just don’t cross our minds. I’m glad you figured it out, though!

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24.July.2012

My now 13 year old daughter showed similar signs when she was a baby, however, dairy was not the reason – nuts were! She had really bad eczema and general fussiness. I wish I had not eaten any nuts while nursing her as I often blame myself for her now life-threatening allergy. Of course, she is almost 14 so she still experiences ‘general fussiness’ but for different reasons! Girls……they can be tough! Your little one is adorable!

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24.July.2012

Dana, I don’t know if anyone has mentioned this yet or not because I only had time to read through the first half of the responses, but this is the BEST alternative to ice cream: let a big bunch of bananas get decently ripe, peel them and place them in freezer for a few days (in a bag or freezer container), then blend them in a food processor until smooth and creamy. You really won’t know you’re eating only bananas. It tastes better than ice cream. You can top it with some honey and chopped walnuts or shredded coconut and even the kids will love it! I’m glad you found out what was bothering her. She’s such a cutie!

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24.July.2012

Congrats on your discovery!! Just FYI, I have a jar of Trader Joe’s mayo in my fridge right now that is dairy free. I know items differ from store to store and we’re not even in the same state, but DO ask a Trader Joe’s employee if you don’t see it next time you’re there. I’ve always found the folks who work there to be helpful.

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24.July.2012

Dana,

I just tried a recipe (link below) that was delicious served with a side of asparagus. It does call for 1 tbsp. of butter, but I am sure you could substitute that. Not sure what your cooking prowess is like, but I made this after my baby was in bed for the night just so I didn’t have to worry about her being under foot. Maybe this might be a better weekend meal when HH is around to help? I just get overwhelmed easily while cooking. Ha! Anyways, I just thought I would share.

Braised Chicken with Lemon and Capers
http://theurbanspork.com/2009/09/braised-chicken-with-lemon-and-capers/

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24.July.2012

A tip: Trader Joe’s dairy free mayo (aka veganaise) is REALLY good!

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24.July.2012

Here are some yummy vegan recipes that are of course dairy and meat free. you could always add meat to them if you’d like.
http://pinterest.com/jbaertsch/vegan-recipes/

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24.July.2012

Good luck! I had the same issue breastfeeding. She had MANY allergies and has almost outgrown them all. There is hope! Love the dairy free ice creams. Visit your local health food store if you haven’t already. They were very helpful to me. If you feel like you need baked goods, make A LOT of a diary free recipe and freeze some. You can pop a frozen muffin or a cookie in the microwave and be set on the craving.

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24.July.2012

My 3rd was allergic to bananas. The easiest quickest new mom snack around. The crying and mucous-y spit up stopped when I stopped. So if it isn’t one of the obvious allergens it is worth looking at what else you are eating.

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24.July.2012

i add a little flavored hummus (trader joe’s tomato hummus is grand) instead of mayo or mustard to sandwiches, helps as a cheese stand-in.

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24.July.2012

My son was diagnosed as milk and soy protein intolerant (MSPI) when he was 9 wks old. He was very fussy, had to be held all the time, tested positive for blood in his stool before I eliminated foods from my diet, and also had reflux. It’s fairly common in Nebraska where I live. I breastfed and eliminated all milk and soy protein products from my diet for a full year. I had to read a lot of food labels but once I knew what foods were safe it really wasn’t all that terrible. The hardest part was going out to eat, getting take out, or eating foods that others prepared. In some ways I think it helped me eat healthier too. There are online articles from my pediatrician’s office that might help but the spam filter won’t let me send them. Google Complete Childrens Health.

There is also a great breastfeeding resource center called MilkWorks here in Lincoln, NE. They have an email support group for mothers of babies and kids with food intolerances. It was a very good resource for me for recipe and dining options. Here’s the link for info:
http://milkworks dot org/breastfeeding/virtual-support
I’ll list some of my favorite foods that were safe to eat. Keep in mind ingredients might change so check labels. It’s been a year and a half since I had to eliminate so ingredients might have changed.
Ghiradelli chocolate chips and some of their brownie mixes
almond and coconut milk ice cream is good, but I did not care for rice milk ice cream
Near East Taboule mix; I would add cucumber, garbanzos, sub canned tomato for fresh
some Prego and Target Market Pantry pasta sauces
Target Market Pantry honey graham crackers
Fiber One and Orowheat whole wheat breads
Chipotle was the easiest place for me to get fast food
I hope this helps! Good luck and feel free to contact me if you have any questions!

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24.July.2012

I too was eating a ton of Greek yogurt and drinking quite a bit of milk when we realized that our daughter was sensitive to dairy. I cut out all dairy, but slowly began bringing back some as the weeks went by (a little milk chocolate, etc.). I’m still not at the point where I think it’s safe to eat yogurt or milk (I use vanilla coconut milk in my cereal), but now that my baby is six months old, I’ve begun eating a little pizza, a little cheese– and she’s responding alright to it.

On a side note, eliminating dairy helped me lose those last 5 pounds of pregnancy weight!

And Mabrey sure is a cutie ;)

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24.July.2012

My 3rd child had protein intollerances (no dairy or soy). After 2 weeks of dairy-free, I stopped breastfeeding. We had to use a hypoallergenic formula (liquid gold), but he was able to sleep for more than 3 hours at a stretch. After 8 weeks of feeding an unhappy baby every 2-3 hours, I was exhausted. We had a new baby- he was happy, and not in pain! I think that I might have been more successful with the dairy/soy free diet if more things had been readily available 8 years ago like they are today. Ironically, I now cannot tollerate dairy, so I am dairy-free (and wheat-free) and I haven’t had a difficult time with the transition.
You are doing a wonderful thing for your baby. Keep it up!

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25.July.2012

Did I miss something? I thought mayo was eggs and oil. Does it have dairy in it too?

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replied on July 25th, 2012

Sorry. I forgot to mention that I’m staying away from eggs for these first few weeks as well as they can be big culprits too and I was eating a lot of them before. I’ll try re-introducing them in a few to see if Mabrey has a negative reaction. So, for now, no mayo.

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Hey Dana,

Here’s my advice food-wise:

1. Try sheep’s milk cheeses and goat’s milk cheeses/yogurt/ice cream/etc. Animal milk varies widely and it’s likely that she’s only allergic to cow’s milk.

2. Real mayo is dairy-free – it’s made of egg yolks and oil, no milk or butter to be found. There’s also a vegan mayo called veganaise that’s super delicious.

3. Baked good substitutions for milk/cream are super easy. Soymilk can be curdled with a bit of cider vinegar to make “buttermilk”, and I use soy or almond milk cup-for-cup instead of milk. Cream gets replaced by coconut milk or almond milk depending on how rich I need a recipe to be.

4. My favorite non-dairy butter is Earth Balance “Soy Free” Spread – the original and whipped are fine, but the soy free is really good.

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I’m happy for you that you’ve seen such improvement! I can only imagine how hard that stretch was!

I did the dairy free thing for a couple of months with my first son, and it did seem to help, although I don’t think he was as sensitive as Mabrey. I was able to slowly add milk back into my diet after a few months without trouble. Here’s to hoping the same for you! Good luck!

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25.July.2012

Long time reader, 1st time commenter. I’ve been dairy, egg, gluten, strawberry and peanut free for 6 months (the agony) for my own little guy. Coconut milk, creamer and ice cream are godsends. I’m sure you might also like “Enjoy Life” chocolate chips or bars if you need a “fix” as well too. They use cocoa butter instead of milk. It’s all worth it in the end. Just ask if you have any q’s.

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25.July.2012

No kids of my own, but I’ve been eating a paleo diet (70-80% at this point) for the past couple months. So Delicious Coconut Milk ice cream is pretty divine if you are looking for something sweet. I’ve seen several suggestions for using coconut milk in a can. The main thing you’ll want to be careful with there is how the cans are lined (http://chriskresser.com/3-reasons-why-coconut-milk-may-not-be-your-friend). Also, if you’re concerned about too many nuts in your diet via the almond milk, So Delicious also makes an unsweetened coconut milk that’s fairly tasty. I use it a lot to make smoothies.

Otherwise, Daiya makes a dairy-free/soy-free cheese if you can find it in a store near you. The cheddar is pretty great on eggs and my vegan friends swear by their mozzarella for pizzas.

Best of luck with your daughter!

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25.July.2012

I am more dairy free by choice and I love it. So many of your “hidden calories” are in dairy-based items. It’s a great way to stay healthy w/o much effort in a diet.

Although I do eat greek yogurt and ice cream ;)

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I find I’m sorta sensitive to dairy sometimes too. We drink vanilla almond milk at home (actually don’t like the TJs version). I highly recommend certain flavors of SoDelicious ice cream (not chocolate) like caramel swirl something. Cuties ice cream bars are great too!

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25.July.2012

My oldest daughter is allergic to milk. They say about 80% of kids who have the allergy young will grow out of it by age 5. It’s been a rough road, but now that she is five she is within reach of the “normal” range for milk which means we’ve been able to start giving her foods with that contain milk or milk proteins without issues. You will become a great label reader and once you get the hang of staying away from those foods that contain milk it isn’t so bad. Good luck!

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The same thing happened with two of my neighbors who just had babies. Now they are both are dairy free diets and they said the baby is doing so much better. This will be good to remember for the future.

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25.July.2012

For baking, you can substitute Crisco or apple sauce for butter-that way you can still have some sweets! Pillsbury sugar cookies are dairy free (go for the cookie dough pre-made cookies that you can just stick in the oven). Another sub for butter is from Smart Balance-check to make sure it’s the one without ‘whey’ in it. :) Enjoy!

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25.July.2012

I too am dairy free because of a baby who sounds much like yours. I use a lot of canned coconut milk for shakes and smoothies (great way to get your chocolate fix!). Check out the blog http://www.chocolatecoveredkatie.com…she has great dairy free recipes!

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25.July.2012

My daughter was much the same as a baby, turns out she cannot have dairy or wheat. I use vegan margarine in place of butter. We drink almond milk but use coconut milk in cooking. My favorite shockingly dairy free has to be pimento-cashew sauce (readily available via google). It is a pasta sauce that tastes like a rose sauce. I serve it to people with no allergy issues and get compliments! We also have started to eat a lot of ethnic Many people with dairy allergies develop soy sensitivities so try not t use too much soy!

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25.July.2012

Okay where do I start? First, I suggest researching the terrible effects of dairy consumption! Also recommend the documentaries “Hungry for Change” and “Forks Over Knives.”

As far as consuming your favorite dairy items, there is a long list of substitutes out there. My favorites are: Follow Your Heart Vegannaise (better than mayo!), So Delicious Coconut Milk Ice Cream (hands down best ice cream I’ve ever had!!), Earth Balance and almond milk or coconut milk. I love avocado for its creaminess and richness, and you can use silken tofu, cashew cream or avocado for puddings and other recipes. Nutritional yeast has a cheesy flavor to it – I’ve made cheesy garlic breadsticks with it before.

There are so many vegan recipes out there that you can use for your family! I have found that I ate better food and cooked tons more (I love cooking though) when I gave up meat and dairy. These are websites I LOVE:

http://www.findingvegan.com – all kinds of vegan recipes – this is how I discovered many many vegan blogs!
lunch box brunch blog – vegan and amazing recipes!
http://www.peasandthankyou.com – family blog (2 young daughters) and a banana bread recipe to die for
Oh She Glows
Post Punk Kitchen
Happy Cow – provides map of vegetarian and vegan friendly restaurants
Hol-Fit – she has two young daughters as well!
Crazy Sexy Life – Kris Carr’s website, has many good links and recipes on it

I also love the cookbook Veganomicon! Luna bars are vegan and very easy to make your own at home. I don’t tell anyone how to eat, but dairy is so bad for you & I love cooking without dairy – I find more inventive recipes and I actually make new recipes!

Good luck and above all so glad that you have made progress with Mabrey! I don’t have kids of my own but have surrogate nieces and nephews and I can only imagine how hard that would be!

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25.July.2012

Good for you! Figuring out baby allergies can be so hard. My aunt went through a very similar situation with her second child who was sensitive or allergic to dairy, peanuts and beef protein. Luckily he out grew all of his food allergies by the time he was 3 years old.

As a lactose intolerant baker I thought I would send you a bit of chocolate cake hope! The link below is my favorite VEGAN CHOCOLATE CAKE recipe it is sooo good, moist and fluffy and chocolaty. And you don’t have to worry about dairy in the chocolate because cocoa powder is lactose free. :)

If you don’t like chocolate feel free to ignore me! ;)

If you are interested go to Joy the Bakers website here: http://joythebaker.com/2010/02/sweetheart-rose-cupcakes/ (the frosting recipe is NOT dairy free)

Since frosting is an issue (butter) you can go with the, not awesome, option of using a crisco based frosting with confectioners sugar and add cocoa if you want chocolate frosting. Or you can under bake it (no eggs to worry about) and dust it with confectioners sugar, totally yummy! Another option is making a quick nut frosting with almond or peanut butter mixed with a bit of confectioners sugar more or less depending on consistency and sweetness you want.

Now I’m craving these! So good. I would love to hear back if you make these! :D

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25.July.2012

That pic of Mabrey in the pink polka dotted onesie is super adorable. Also – have you tired no-milk banana ice cream? You cut up bananas, freeze them, and then process them in your food processor. Put in a pan, re-freeze and serve! It’s seriously so so so good, and it’s just bananas, or you can add things like cocoa powder or peanut butter if you want to get crazy. =) Good luck with being dairy free!

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25.July.2012

I’m SO GLAD y’all figured out what was going on!! I can only imagine how spent you were at the end of those 5-6 weeks.
:)

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25.July.2012

It’s amazing how many areas of one’s life can be effected by allergies. My oldest son (now five) has severe allergies to milk, eggs, beef, and pineapple. He also had a soy allergy when he was a baby so he had to use a special, very expensive, formula. During my subsequent pregnancies I stayed away from milk and eggs in hopes of preventing my other two children from having the same allergies. Our allergist recommended slowly adding those foods back into my diet while I was nursing to hopefully prevent those allergies in my other kids (which has worked so far). But my son is still very allergic and has incredibly severe reactions (vomiting, hives, difficulty breathing). Since his allergies include milk, eggs, and beef it has been really helpful to check out different vegan recipes (I like the recipes on the whole foods iPhone app) and other kid-friendly vegan websites. He does eat other meats on occasion but it’s just been easier to avoid them for the most part. It’s amazing how many foods contain these ingredients – or how many are made in a facility that processes other foods that have these ingredients (he is sensitive to trace amounts). We’ve found that coconut and almond milk are just as delicious as soy – we got a little sick of soy everything after awhile. And many of the soy yogurts and soy or coconut ice creams are pretty tasty as well. Oh – and there is an egg replacer by EnerG that you can find at most health food stores that works in baked goods. My son had his first “real” cookies about a year ago after we found that and he was ecstatic. Good luck with everything!!

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25.July.2012

I’ve been having some of the same issues with my 5 month old daughter. I made this last night and it was SO GOOD. I substituted grapeseed oil for olive oil for the dressing and added some quinoa and black beans too. My two and half year old couldn’t get enough of it! Good luck with the diet change :) http://smittenkitchen.com/2012/06/chopped-salad-with-feta-lime-and-mint/#more-8702

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25.July.2012

Beautiful baby!

Just yesterday I read a recipe for Banana Ice Cream. http://www.elsiemarley.com/summer-journal-banana-ice-cream.html

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25.July.2012

Oh yeah, BTDT, and thanks for both both publicising it (so more sufferring parents/babies get diagnosed) and mentioning that it’s not the end of the world for you. So many people pretend like it’s some srt of mummy-martyr sacrifice to alter your diet for your baby.

Whole foods has dairy free milk chocolate, and you can also cook chocoatey things with high ccoa chcolate (lindt does a great one) or cocoa. I loved coconut milk based curries for creaminess.

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Your story sounds identical to my story with our daughter Molly. She was so so fussy, so clingy, not sleeping well, crying ALL THE TIME…I was losing it! Then one day after doing some research we switched off dairy and woh! New baby after the first feeding. Like completely new baby.

I felt bad for a long time for not realizing it and putting her in so much pain. She is now almost 9 months old and is the happiest baby! So glad you guys figured it out, such a game changer!

We have also been able to introduce dairy back now and she is not having any problems. : )

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25.July.2012

Hey Dana
My daughter (my only child) came out of the womb wanting her mama to hold her. I gave into her every cry and I held her almost 24/7. I was miserable…not that I didn’t love cuddling and bonding with my baby…but like you…my back and arms were killing me…and some days I just needed to take a break. She would cry when anyone else held her. I was unable to breast feed. She was lactose intolerant. I started her on lactose free formula and it helped. I held her until about 3 months and my ped said that I really needed to break this cycle so she could learn to fall asleep on her own. It was brutal!!! She cried for about 1 week every time I put her down…but by week 3 she was sleeping in her crib and learning to go back to sleep on her own if she woke up. I can totally relate to where you are coming from!

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25.July.2012

My husband and I like to joke that we live in a parallel universe with you – as we have been renovating our own underdog with a lot of similarities to yours. But this just pushed me over the edge…been there, done that. Same story with my own little one, I had to get off dairy completely and it was SUPER hard at first. No fear baked goods are totally within your reach – crisco. I know, I know…but desperation will take hold and you will find some serious comfort in cookies! Gingersnaps were my fav, but there were some good oatmeal recipes I found. Good luck!

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25.July.2012

That pic of Mabrey on her pink and green blanket is ADORABLE!!!!

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25.July.2012

Milk/Egg/Peanut allergic child in this house. She is 7 and finally showing signs of outgrowing the milk and egg. Onto the goods…the best butter to buy is Earth Balance Soy Free in the Red/white container. Kitchen Basics for Beef Broth/Veggie/Chicken Broths. Toffuti makes the best cream cheese and sour cream. Veganaise for mayo and of course you are already doing Almond milk – our favorite. I don’t know how you feel about eating peanut butter while breastfeeding, but I didn’t with my second. She has no food allergies. Instead we use Sunbutter (the natural with the oil floating on top is the best tasting.) Lastly, Enjoy Life makes awesome chocolate chips and candy bars. Not sure where you live, but here in GA our Kroger has all of the items listed and of course – Whole Foods will have it all. It sucks to hear what you can’t eat! All I wanted to say to the doc was, “Now tell me what I CAN eat and where to get it!” I have a pdf cook book of milk/egg/peanut free cookbook I can email you if you’d like – there is an amazing chocolate cookie recipe that even fooled my picky father-in-law. I do a lot of ‘tweaking’ in the recipes to suit our taste. :) Good luck!

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25.July.2012

So glad you found the solution. Being dairy free is not that difficult and I agree focus on the good food you can have. not what you cant. I have been following the Paleo diet for a couple of months and there are ways around the dairy without feeling deprived. Make your own Mayo with olive oil and egg. really easy and good. 1 egg room temperature, 1/4 cup olive oil, or avacado oil, two tablespoons of lemon juice, combine and let sit in blender for a couple of hours. Then blend well and with the blender in motion, add 1 cup of oil drizzle very slowly taking 3 minutes add, the slower you go the creamier the mayo. If the raw egg concerns you use pasturized egg whites. My suggestion for recipes is to search for “Paleo” lots of information and great recipes out there. Good Luck to you and so glad you have a happier baby…. Alison

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replied on July 25th, 2012

I forgot to mention, coconut milk. Try substituting it for cows milk in baked goods. and coconut oil for butter.

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25.July.2012

Please don’t feel like you should have known! My oldest daughter had dairy, soy and egg allergies and when I had my youngest, it didn’t immediately occur to me that she has dairy issues too. That being said, neither of them now has any food allergies-I am still breastfeeding my youngest and she has outgrown them in a relatively short period of time. Maybe someone has already suggested this but often times a dairy and soy allergy go hand in hand-I definitely found this to be true for us. I would try to be careful about eating many healthy fats and just eating as often as possible-I’m a vegetarian and ended up losing too much weight when I couldn’t eat dairy/eggs etc. What helped was going to my library and checking out vegan cookbooks-some are more fussy than others with a lot of ingredients etc-and then adapting them to your needs. I found the mothering.com forums helpful too with recipes and suggestions. Some of my staples were food processor pizza crust with sauce and Daiya cheese, smoothies, avacado,tomato and hummus sandwiches, vegan cookies.You are such a good mama!

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25.July.2012

first I will say it in a sophisticated way “utter relief” but it also occurs to me to say “udder relief” . Gosh you must be thrilled with this relief. Congratulations on being an observant and caring mother!

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25.July.2012

I myself am dairy free, and there are a few things that have helped the transition. Coconut milk and Coconut oil are amazing baking substitutes. I can still eat pizza without the cheese, just extra sauce and toppings.Also, I make my own coconut milk ice cream, and it totally hits the spot. Generally we just eat a lot of fruits and vegetables, but I still get the cravings for dairy based things. Additionally, most mayo does not contain dairy, just make sure you check the bottle. Putting chipotle mayo on things totally replaces cheese.

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25.July.2012

It looks like several people have already suggested looking up Paleo recipes (though eggs are heavily used in most Paleo diets), but I thought I’d suggest this specific recipe for a quick link for you! While chocolate, it’s unsweetened cocoa powder, so I thought you might be able to get a chocolate fix without the dairy or eggs! Hope you and that precious girl enjoy it! http://paleomg.com/cinnamon-caramel-brownie-fruit-dip/

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25.July.2012

You may want to consult your doctor before reintroducing any dairy. My son has a dairy intolerance which we discovered after he started having blood in his stool. The GI doctor he has seen is very confident that it is just an intolerance and not a true allergy however, we can not introduce any dairy until he is at least one years old.
I have been dairy free now for 7 months and at this point I forget why I loved dairy foods so much! The longer you go without it the easier it gets. Hang in there and congrats on figuring this out on your own!

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I had a similar issue with my newborn. Her reaction wasn’t as bad as Mabrey’s, but she was gassy and had bowel cramps and was very fussy (and now I think of it, also refused to be put down so maybe that was also caused by this!) I cut out all dairy proteins, switched to oat milk and she was much better. By 6 months she was over it and now can’t get enough dairy stuff herself. As you said it’s the proteins not lactose so maybe Mabrey will grow out of it in time.

Well done for working it out, and good luck :-)

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25.July.2012

There are lots of milk substitutes for drinking and cereal eating, but I have found So Delicious Coconut Creamer to be my favorite milk sub for cooking and baking, especially when the flavor of the milk sub might be tasted in the final outcome. I often dilute this creamer with water 1:1 and even 2:1 to make it stretch, and it still works. (In fact, when it is diluted, it reminds me a lot of cow’s milk flavor.) I’ve used it in cakes and candy, etc., and also successfully made a traditional white sauce with it. Also, coconut oil makes a great butter substitute. I find Spectrum Expeller Pressed has great neutral flavor (not coconutty). Some of the other varieties of coconut oil taste like coconut, which works for some things, but not on a baked potato! ;) There are lots of great recipes online, but I find it most encouraging when I can find an allergy-friendly way to prepare foods I used to make before allergies. Hope this helps.

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25.July.2012

Gosh I was going to comment on one of your posts to say that your daughter’s symptoms sounded very similar to my son’s but I ended up deleting the message because I thought it might be too much. My second born start to develop a horrible rash only a few weeks old, the doctor said it was baby acne but I was insistent that it wasn’t. It kept getting worse and his poo was a horrible mucusy green, screamed the entire time he was in the car seat, then the final tipping point was when we started to find actual droplets of blood in his bowel movements…poor little guy!! I felt horrible our doctor sent him to a gastrologist and I started an elimination diet and found out that dairy, soy and beef all caused blood (we could never understand the beef). It was really hard but I found some great blogs, great recipes and totally made it through the year. He is now a year old and eats yogurt all the time and just started to drink milk (but he is not so into it). I was told that if you can stick to a very strict diet the first year then the odds are better that your child will come out of it fine. So I made almost all my food and learned to ask everything if I went out to eat. Panera (if it is around you) has a book that shows what is the allergens that are in their food so ask to borrow it to check through. Trader Joe had some great products, like dairy free/soy free brownies, candies, amazing coconut ice cream, soy free tortilla chips. I relied heavily on earth balance soy free spread, I actually still use it and will never use anything else we love it. I also use coconut oil, almond milk, coconut milk in everything…tons of power shakes, power cookies, great coconut milk curry soup, pumpkin pancakes, popovers. I was never without or had craving because I found a way to satisfy my creamy cravings. Oh and whole foods has an amazing organic dark chocolate…so crazy good!! If you want some recipes I have some great ones pinned on pinterest (it is not all dairy free but most is and I have tried most of them…101cookbooks.com is my favorite site). http://pinterest.com/baydinlik/recipes/
Good luck, if anything is a real eye opener about all the horrible things that they put into processed food. Oh an stay away from Geber, from some reason they use vegetable oil (soybean) in their baby food…NO CLUE WHY (the gastrologist told me this)!?!?!

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26.July.2012

I have a 6 month old little boy. He is also cow milk protein sensitive (I hate to use the term allergic even though the GI doc does). I have been dairy free, soy free, egg free for months now. It isn’t that bad once you get used to it. It becomes a way of life. We had to do a total elimination diet and slowly add stuff back in to find the culprit. Glad she is feeling well and you figured it out! Is it just dairy or soy also?

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replied on July 30th, 2012

Seems to be just dairy. I haven’t had her tested…she has her 4-month checkup next week and I’ll discuss my findings with her pediatrician then. Many babies who are allergic to dairy are also allergic to soy, so it’s definitely a possibility!

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26.July.2012

Awe, that’s tough – been there done that! Glad to hear things are improving. I’ve always loved milk, but had to leave it out of my diet when nursing my son as I found it caused him to spit up more. That’s when I discovered almond milk. I didn’t like the taste at first, but it grew on me, and now I love it! (I still like cow’s milk best with oreos though!).

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26.July.2012

My mom found out that I had a dairy-intolerance when I was the same age as Mabrey. This was in the 80s before dairy-free food was commonly marked and sold in stores. My poor mother was changing my sheets 3 times a night because of how sick I’d get. My mother took me to my pediatrician who said I may grow out of it, but, to this day, I am still highly intolerant of dairy (Lactaid pills will do nothing but make me more sick).

However, there are tons of food that have recently come on to the market that I LOVE. Almond milk is my favorite thing, and since you mention liking coconut milk desserts, I wonder if you’ve tried Almond Dream’s Chocolate Ice Cream. The almond milk adds a great nutty flavor to the chocolate and even my dairy-loving fiance prefers it to real chocolate ice cream. All of our recipes are strictly dairy-free and sub almond milk for real milk (this works well in cooking – esp. potatoes – but not so great for baking…or pudding). Another sub I’ve seen work great in traditionally dairy-filled recipes is silken (firm tofu – see here http://chocolatecoveredkatie.com/2011/09/06/the-ultimate-chocolate-fudge-pie/).

Watch out for Whey protein. It appears in everything and will leave little Mabrey sick and irritable for days (it certainly does me). Many pre-packaged pastas and soups sneak it in there.

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26.July.2012

I’m glad little Mabrey is feeling better. I’ve been vegan for 20+ years so I know all the dairy substitute tricks, but Oh She Glows has some great ideas, especially the creamy avocado pasta. She has some amazing desserts too!
http://ohsheglows.com/2011/01/31/15-minute-creamy-avocado-pasta/

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26.July.2012

alternative milks are simple to make at home, even with baby! most of them are made by soaking the nuts or grains overnight, straining then blending in the blender or food processor. my favourite is oatmilk made with organic oat groats. you can add hemp or sunflower seeds to increase the nutrient content (or you can add chia and or flax the morning before blending). it’s delicious. i find the oat milk the most creamy and love the flavour.
be sure to read the ingredient lists on alternative milks. avoid them if they contain carrageenan (many of them do) as it can cause a host of problems. http://raypeat.com/articles/nutrition/carrageenan.shtml

some great cookbooks to look at for incredibly delicious dairy-free recipe inspiration:
http://www.amazon.ca/The-Millennium-Cookbook-Extraordinary-Vegetarian/dp/0898158990
http://rebar.cookthebook.ca/

all the best!

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A friend of mine is lactose intolerant and runs a website called Dairy Freed. You might find some great recipes on it that you can enjoy. Best of luck! http://www.dairyfreed.com/

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26.July.2012

My daughter is now lactose intolerant but when she was born she had a double whammy she was allergic to proteins and lactose intolerant. We went through a very hard time to. As soon as your doctor will allow it I would have her tested for allergy (I’m guessing she is not allergic to proteins unless you also don’t eat beef but she could be) we had to wait until she was 1, but found out she had outgrown her allergy and we could now give her whey and casein (found in lots of baked goods). Some life savers for us is most Kraft cheese is lactose free it will say it on the package, hard cheeses like Parmesan are lactose free, and Duncan Hinze cake mixes are dairy free (important for that first birthday) Oreos are also dairy free. No matter what I feel for you, we’ve had a real problem with people giving her food since she started eating solids (she will be 3 in Sept) that she can’t have she still gets very bad gas and screams when she has unapproved dairy. Family members who should know better.

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26.July.2012

I had an extreme dairy sensitivity for many years, and wound up going full-vegan to completely avoid dairy – it sneaks into so many foods!

Anyway, here are some of my favorite dairy-free foods:

Bean and “Cheese” Enchiladas: http://vegweb.com/recipes/cheesy-bean-and-cheese-enchiladas
Vegan Manicotti: http://lazygourmet.wordpress.com/2007/11/16/not-yo-mommas-manicotti/
Cookies’n’Cream Vegan Cupcakes: http://www.chow.com/recipes/10794-basic-vegan-chocolate-cupcake

VegWeb.com has a lot of very good, well-reviewed vegan recipes, especially for baking. The Post-Punk Kitchen (and their published cookbooks, including The Veganomicon) are a great resource for recipes and basic food ideas. I also have a great dessert cookbook, “Sinfully Vegan”, that has a ton of great vegan dessert recipes that are real crowd-pleasers.

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26.July.2012

Your daughter is beautiful and I loooove that blanket shes laying on – wondering where you got that. I would love to get one for my two month old daughter.

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Good for you! We have been completely dairy free for a long time now, and it’s one of the best decisions we’ve ever made. Watching Forks Over Knives was a big wake up call. It really reinforced what we already knew to be true. Best of luck with everything. :) I enjoy reading your blog.

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26.July.2012

I totally feel your pain and I have such a heart for mom’s that go through this with their babies. You are exactly where I was with my first born. Cow’s milk protein allergies are the worst! He was a mess and just as you described Mabrey, although trade blood in the stools for diarrhea. I would be exhausted at the end of the day because I was literally holding him or wearing him ALL DAY LONG. Not to mention that he would only sleep in 45 minute to hour and a half increments day or night. I literally almost went crazy his first five months of life trying to get him some relief. He was a formula baby, due to his prematurity and some supply issues I had related to that and the Pre-e and HELLP, I developed with him. It took two different kinds of prescription formula and a great pediatric GI doctor before we found the cure, but it really helped tremendously. He is still on soy milk at 3 years of age, but he can tolerate some dairy. It just depends. I am so glad you have found some relief!

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26.July.2012

You mentioned green stool. Just a thought – since your nursing. Too much fore milk caused green stool in infants. If your producing a lot of milk, she may be getting too much fore milk. Hind milk is where all the protein and fat is. You can try pumping a few minutes before you feed until you have let down and then feed. See if her poop turns back to the mustardy yellow of a breastfeed baby instead of green. Sorry so graphic but you know….

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26.July.2012

I suggest that you visit the Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network (foodallergy.org) for recipes, for help reading labels for hidden sources of cow’s milk protein, and information about food allergies in general. There are also a ton of blogs and websites with recipes. You can always take The Joy of Cooking to bed with you and bookmark new recipes with no milk. :-) That’s what I did, and I found some great ones!

My daughter had all of the same issues as Mabrey from birth. I have been cooking dairy-free for her for 13 years now. I had to drop milk and all milk products when I was nursing, too, and while it was difficult, her comfort and health was more important. She is SEVERELY allergic, as in anaphylactic reaction to milk in any form. She is NOT lactose intolerant, which is a completely different thing, as you know.

Just want to reiterate: Lactose intolerance is NOT the same as being allergic to milk. Please, those with lactose intolerance versus a true allergy, be careful when offering advice here. Allergics cannot ingest ANY of the offending food without severe repercussions.

Also, please seek the assistance of a qualified pediatric allergist in dealing with food allergies in children. They are your best sources of the latest research and data on treating food allergies and will help with managing your child’s diet and dealing with reactions.

Lastly, reintroducing foods to “test” an allergy is SO dangerous! I was just interviewed by KABC7 here in LA about this very subject. I guess some parents are knowingly feeding their kids foods they are allergic to try to “build tolerance”. No no no no no no….omg no…. Only if you are participating in a monitored study should you even consider this. You can do more harm than good with this practice. You cannot get “food allergy shots” like you can with environmental allergies. Totally different beast.

Sorry. Soapboxy moment. Just looking at that happy baby face on Mabrey reminds me so much of my own daughter after we changed her diet.

Good luck, Dana & Mabrey!

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Sullivan had so many issues with breast milk, even after cutting my diet to almost nothing so he was on soy formula and probiotics to help his fussy belly. I cannot stress my love of probiotics enough. He’s 18 months and we still give them to him if he’s sick or after a round of antibiotics. Good luck!

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replied on July 27th, 2012

Yes! Love the Culturelle granule packets.

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27.July.2012

For delicious recipe ideas with mostly gluten and dairy free recipes:

http://www.thehealthychef.com/

All the best

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27.July.2012

I totally just stalked your instagram. Convinced HH stands for HANDSOME Hubby! What a beautiful family BTW!

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replied on July 27th, 2012

He is pretty handsome, isn’t he?

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27.July.2012

Feeling for you! I had to give up dairy (and now gluten) a few years ago. I’m seriously allergic to the proteins casein and whey, and my reaction has been getting more and more sever since childhood (my eyes swell shut, my cheeks swell, and I get hives). I wish someone had suggested a sensitivity early on. Good on you for being proactive and taking care of your sweet little one!

Just saw this recipe via DesignMom for a dairy free alfredo, using avocado: http://www.glowkitchen.com/2012/03/vegan-alfredo/
The things I miss the most are the decadent creamy dishes like this! Best of luck.

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27.July.2012

I was catching up on your blog posts at 3am when I was having a difficult night with my two week. Things had been really easy until then and I wasn’t sure what changed. However, I noticed he was having several of the symptoms you referenced with Mabrey. Your experienced helped us quickly narrow it down to something I’d eaten earlier in the day. I don’t think I would have come to that conclusion for weeks had you not shared your experience. Thank you!! Your daughter is growing so quickly! She is absolutely adorable!!!

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28.July.2012

Hi, I have a son with a peanut allergy and he used to be allergic to other nuts and eggs. There is an organization called FAAN (food allergy and anaphylaxis network). They put out a monthly newsletter and it always has recipes for people with allergies. It may also be good for information as she gets older if she’s that sensitive. Good luck, so glad you figured it out.

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28.July.2012

Check out this blog. Both of her kids have allergies- worse than Mabry’s- but she has recipes and tips. http://www.namastebyday.com/

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28.July.2012

Someone above may have said this already, but Whole Foods has grocery lists that accommodate various allergies. My best friend’s baby is unfortunately very allergic (bloody diapers) to both dairy and soy (soy is in everything!!) and I pointed to her Whole Foods, and she’s been very grateful.

Here are some of her favorite products (keeping in mind that a lot of this also concerns soy):
– Vanilla almond milk
– Earth balance soy-free spread
– Whole Foods brand frozen butternut squash ravioli (it’s dairy and soy free!)
– Chocoluv dark chocolate
– So Delicious coconut milk ice creams
– Enjoy Life chocolate chips
– I think Van’s waffles were dairy/soy free
– Some flavors of Nature’s Path granola bars
– Regular cheerios + almond milk for breakfast
– Dairy-free instant oatmeal + almond milk
– Cheese-free pizza will help with a pizza craving. It’s better than fake cheese, trust me on this.
– Most packaged/sliced bread has dairy in it EXCEPT the ones at Whole Foods.
– I found a couple of Annie’s organic meals that were dairy/soy free.
– Annie’s “California burgers” are dairy and soy free, which is very hard to find in a veggie burger.

Good luck!

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replied on July 30th, 2012

Trader Joe’s does, as well.

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28.July.2012

My oldest son also has a dairy allergy that we found out in the same way you did with your little Mabrey. Extreme fussiness and no sleeping and I went off dairy and had a different baby. He slept and his rashes cleared. He is now four and his allergy got increasing worse. He has anaphylaxis tiak out. I pray it does not get to that with your little one! A couple of food tips for you
Nature’s Own bread 100% whole wheat is dairy free and you can get it at most major grocery stores
Coconut Milk yogurt is delicious and you can get it at Sprouts ( I don’t know if you have that where you are, but its a great resource)
Coconut Milk is great. I find it just tastes better than almond or soy milk. Silk brand.
Duncan Hines Butter Golden cake mix is dairy free ( ironic I know)
Oreos are too
Nuqoa margarine contains no milk and I found is the best alternative for cooking and baking.
In our home we eat a lot of meat and vegetable meals. Pork tenderloin, grilled chicken, tilapia. you get the picture.
Coconut milk icecream is so good and doesn’t leave a weird taste in your mouth.
A great substitute for whipped topping is canned coconut milk. Put it in the fridge for a couple of days. The cream separates from the water. scoop out the cream and add 1 tsp of vanilla and 1/3 cup of sugar. Whip it up and refridgerate. Its tastes so good and I’m big on not compromising on taste. Can you tell we like coconut? :) I hope you do too!
Thats just a few tips off the top of my head. Good Luck! I just had my second son so I’m off dairy completely too because I’m breastfeeding and never want to go through what I did with my first son ever again. ( When I stopped breastfeeding my first son, my husband and I would eat dairy at resturants on dates.) Its hard and I never fully stop craving it.

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28.July.2012

You had mentioned posting about your routine/schedule in one post. I suppose that will change now that Mabrey is less fussy, but I’d love to hear how naps and feedings go for you. We just had #3 in May (Miles) and moved from WI to SC in June, so things have been nuts! He is a big boy and does well at night, but I can’t get him over the 45 minute nap hump. Had the same problem with the other 2, but I can’t remember if I solved it or if they just don’t take longer naps until they are older. Anyway, if you have time, I’d love to hear what’s working for you.

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29.July.2012

I had the same problem with my daughter and noticed a difference within a day of going dairy free. Once she reached about six months or so, I was able to start re-introducing dairy into my diet and the sensitivity seemed to have gone away.

As far as recipes, one thing I really missed was pizza (I couldn’t have dairy or tomato) so I started making pizza using pesto for the sauce, goat cheese, chicken and orange pepper. Delicious! Even now that I am back on dairy, my husband still requests this.

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replied on July 30th, 2012

I am really missing pizza. Thanks for the recipe. I’ll have to try it! Sounds great. I find myself eating a lot more pesto nowadays too. Not a bad thing.

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29.July.2012

If you are craving dessert- I highly recommend macadamia cream or cashew cream. Throw some macadamias or cashews (or both) in the blender, add some pitted dates for sweetness, add a little bit of soy or almond milk (I use unsweetened vanilla almond milk) and blend until your desired consistency. I like it thick like pudding so I don’t add too much liquid. If I want chocolate I add unsweetend chocolate powder, and maybe some vanilla extract, serve over fruit and enjoy! This is seriously so good, you won’t miss dairy at all. Glad you both are feeling better.

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30.July.2012

This might be something you’d be interested in! :)

http://www.thedailymeal.com/storebought-cookies-you-didnt-know-were-vegan

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30.July.2012

I tried to post this last Friday, but my internet crapped out!

I had severe dairy sensitivity for many years, and developed a love of vegan baking as a result.

“Sinfully Vegan” is the best dairy-free dessert cookbook I’ve found. The cheesecakes are time-consuming but worth it. There are also dairy-free “pudding” recipes using silken tofu – they are very quick to make, and super-delicious. I still make the tofu pudding now, even though I can eat dairy again! One tip when using silken tofu in raw desserts – boil the tofu for 3 minutes, then drain and let cool. This takes away some of the “beany” taste to the tofu.

Vegweb.com has some amazing vegan recipes, and I found it to be a great resource for dairy-free cookie recipes, too. The “Cheesy Bean and Cheese Enchiladas” are super-delicious, easy to make, and have always been a big hit with the meat-eaters in my family.

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30.July.2012

The American diet is so heavily dependent on wheat and dairy; I had a huge wake-up call when I eliminated gluten, and I’m also lactose intolerant…good times. I highly recommend searching for whole food vegan blogs. If she’s allergic or sensitive to the dairy protein (casein?), be careful about processed soy cheese and the like. I was very upset to find that Galaxy foods soy cheese has milk protein in it.

Goat and sheep cheese are a godsend, and I just tried goat’s milk for the first time. It’s not bad, though a little tangy for my tastes at this point. I’d recommend limiting your soy intake overall, as it’s so easy to go overboard when you get dairy replacements. A lot of people with one allergy or sensitivity tend to have reactions to multiple things, soy being one of them.

I really love replacing mayo with avocado; I just made a chicken salad with avocado, leftover chicken, salt, and tomatoes. I will also chime in with the coconut love; coconut oil is my go-to for almost all cooking these days. It gives everything a rich flavor. The coconut milk yogurt isn’t bad, either, though gets expensive pretty quick. If you can find goat’s milk yogurt, it’s worth a try.

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30.July.2012

I can not get enough of that little girl and her hair!!! I have an equally adorable newborn who is as bald as a cue ball! I’m awaitin so I can do all sorts of fun fancy stuff with it.

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31.July.2012

Check out Happy Herbivore blog and cookbooks! Great recipes!

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31.July.2012

Your story is identical to ours. It is hard at first- I promise it gets easier (i nursed fir 18 months on a dairy/soy/ nut free diet) my little girl is now three and is still allergic to dairy, but has outgrown her soy allergy which gives us hope! Those smiles make it all worth it.

So delicious product are our favorites! Coconut yogurt, ice cream, milk etc.
Daiya cheese is great- its especially delish on pizzas, calzones, even grilled cheese!

Earths balance makes the best vegan butter.

Enjoy life makes amazing chocolate (rice) bars. You can not tell the difference!
I have LOADS of tips and recipes to share with you. All part of out daily allergy life! Email if you are interested.

Let me know- I’d love to help out. It took lots of trial and error on my part and if I can make it easier on someone else id love to!
Xo
Amy

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31.July.2012

Hi there! I saw that someone else mentioned a NAET Practitioner and wanted to second that. My husband and 2nd son (who is now 2yrs old) both had serious allergies (food and environmental) that we saw a NAET practitioner for. I have to say – it seems a little hooky but we’ve seen serious results with minimal change in our lives. My husband has minimal problems and my son no longer has rashes, runny stool or sores (!! so sad!!) in his diapers. We had the appointment, came home and my son was a different person. He eats just about anything he wants and if he has a “flare up” we simply have a 1/2hr appointment and he’s good again.
Ours isn’t covered by our insurance but he charges a flat $30 for a children’s visit. Here’s the website to find one in your area.

http://www.naet.com/subscribers/drnamerica.html

Good luck!!! I’m so glad that what you are doing is working for her and you are able to enjoy your baby again :-)
~ Debbie

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20.January.2013

I was reading a book on autism the other day. The book had a segment on food allergies and one of them was dairy. According to a case study in the book; one woman had a son diagnosed with autism. She also discovered that he had a dairy allergy. When she cut dairy out all of his symptoms went away! The thing that I found completely surprising, though, was that dairy can actually cause a brain damaging toxin to build in the brain of certain people!!! It really made me reconsider if any of us should be consuming so much dairy if it can have such an adverse affect in some people.

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31.January.2013

I’m wondering if Mabrey has outgrown any of her diet sensitivities? I have a little one approaching 9 months, and I’m trying to figure out when and how to slowly add dairy back in. Very interested in your experience.

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replied on January 31st, 2013

Our pediatrician said we could try dairy again at nine months and see what happens. So, about a month ago, we tried some dairy. It didn’t go over so well. She had vomiting and diarrhea and wasn’t happy. We’ll be waiting until she’s at least one year old to try any dairy again.

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27.January.2014

[…] takes a bottle. (Per our pediatrician’s recommendation, I give her coconut milk due to an issue with dairy.) She refuses to drink milk from anything but her bottle. I’m not worried but I think […]




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