- Dr. Liz Homan
Total Elimination Diet- Our journey with food sensitivities.
Oh what a year it has been. I can not believe that on Saturday (May 2), Jane will be ONE!!! I am not sure where the year has gone, but it has had some rough patches but has been filled with so many blessings!
This led to much more spit up over the next few months and a journey that I now know was for a reason but at the time was not fun…
At first, we thought it was a latch issue with nursing that was causing the spit up. She had a very shallow latch and was getting quite a bit of air in. We thought that her latch issue may have been caused by her lip and tongue tie but after we had her lip and tongue tie revised, we didn’t see much improvement with the amount of spit up.
We then went to our wonderful lactation consultant who helped with suck retraining exercises and told us that based off of how Jane sounded while nursing and also some of her tendencies, she may have had a slow to develop larynx. This led to us working with Jane before every feeding to help strengthen her suck reflex and positioning her in certain ways while nursing. This all seemed to help a bit, but she was still spitting up several times a day.
And of course, through all of this, she was getting evaluated by me for subluxations in her spine and was adjusted as needed. This was one of the hardest parts about this whole journey because I see babies in the office every week who have reflux and with a few chiropractic adjustments their symptoms completely disappear. Why couldn’t that happen for my baby? Why did she have to continue to spit up to the point that we were going through 3-4 burp clothes a day? Well, now I understand, it was so that I could go on the journey I am about to tell you about so that I can be a resource to others.
I was feeling overwhelmed as we had tried so many things and I clearly remember one day where she was spitting up so much that I questioned if I was hurting her by breastfeeding… not a great feeling as a mom. Thankfully, I have an amazingly supportive husband and friends who were there for me to vent to when needed.
At this point, I had started eliminating certain things from my diet- it started out “easy” with getting rid of dairy, eggs and corn. We noticed some improvement with her, but she was still spitting up a mucus like substance and not trying to be too disturbing, but her poop was very unhealthy looking.
I could tell that she had a lot of inflammation in her gut and I wanted to figure out what was causing it and to try to heal her body. After a few weeks of no dairy, eggs, or corn, we then went on to eliminate all grains, nuts, chocolate and any additives/preservatives. Basically, I was eating whole food only, and honestly I started to feel very good. But Jane continued to spit up.
So, at the end of a January, after talking to a mom at the office who also had kids with food sensitivities, I started what is known as a Total Elimination Diet (TED). I started eating only oatmeal, chicken, brown rice, sweet potato, broccoli, carrots and apples. I did this for several weeks, and she continued to spit up and have unhealthy poops, so I cut more out. I eliminated oatmeal and raw carrots and all of a sudden, she stopped spitting up.
Once we got to what is considered baseline- so not spitting up any mucus and having healthy poops, it was time to try adding things back into our diet to see how she responded. Talk about anxiety! I honestly didn’t want to add foods back in as we had just gotten to such a good point. We started slowly with avocado and she did well with it but then we tried pure almond butter and she began spitting up again.
After that we tried several foods and she failed them all. I was feeling very overwhelmed and we took a little break from adding foods back in.
And then just about 2 weeks ago we decided to try adding eggs in, and she passed! And she has continued to pass foods that she had previously failed! We are in a very exciting time as our diet is finally starting to expand and she continues to have healthy poops and very minimal spit up!
Through all of this, I want you to understand that when you know that there is something going on with your child, listen to your own intuition! I was told by many people to not worry about it and that she will be fine and may just need to live with allergies, or maybe she will grow out of it. But I could not. I could not just deal with the mucus filled spit up and nasty diapers knowing that it was not normal. And who knows, maybe she did just outgrow it, or maybe we let her gut heal by not putting in any inflammatory foods for that time… no one will ever know.
If you feel that your child may have food sensitivities, or that something is just not right and want more information on what may be a good next step for you, please let me know! I am here to serve you and your family so that you can be healthy and express life infinitely!